Ardrossan - On This Day In History

Published stories from each town's past.
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GLASGOW HERALD
20 FEBRUARY 1878

BODY FOUND

Yesterday, the body of a man in an advanced state of decomposition was washed ashore at Burnfoot, Ardrossan.

The only articles of clothing on deceased were checked tweed trousers, oilskin trousers, blucher boots, and stockings.

The body was removed to the dead-house at the hospital.

A seaman named HUGH BUCHANAN, of the steamer AFTON, went amissing on 21st ultimo, and his friends have been communicated with a view to the identification of the remains.
Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it.
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GLASGOW HERALD
20 FEBRUARY 1948

DEATH

BARR: at 79 Main Street, Baillieston, on 19th February, 1948, Ann White, dealy loved wife of David M. Barr. Funeral (Private) on Monday, 23rd instant, to Ardrossan Cemetery.
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GLASGOW HERALD
20 FEBRUARY 1948

DEATH

Mr S. M. Turnbull, Managing Director of the Greenock Dockyard Company Limited, Greenock, and a director of the Clan Line Steamers Limited, died yesterday at his home, Dunirwin, Newark Street, Greenock. He was 63.

A native of Irvine, Mr Turnbull, after working in Canada for a time, returned to this country and became associated with Ardrossan Dockyard Company.
Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it.
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Re: Ardrossan - On This Day In History

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GLASGOW HERALD
21 FEBRUARY 1863

THE STRANDED BARQUE JAMES RIDDLE

This vessel, which was bound from Alexandria to Glasgow, with a cargo of wheat, sailed from Falmouth, where she had called for orders, on the 15th of January, but was caught in the gale of the 19th, when in the South Channel, and was driven ashore at Clanyard, Port Nessock, on the east side of the Mull of Galloway. She lay there until Monday last, when the powerful steam-tug FLYING METEOR, reached her with materials for a platform, and a number of carpenters in charge of Mr James Anderson, managing shipwright to Messrs Barr & Shearer, Ardrossan.

The platform, having been erected, the steamer was successful in taking her off, and towing her to Ardrossan, where she was left for the necessary repairs on Wednesday evening last.

The prompt and expeditious manner in which this has been managed is creditable to Messrs Barr & Shearer, and those in their employment.
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Kilmarnock Herald and Ayrshire Gazette
February 28, 1947

Ardrossan Man Loses Leg

Mr J. E. Hopperton, of 8 The Crescent, Ardrossan, was seriously injured on Sunday last at West Kilbride Quarry when a crane toppled over and crushed one of his legs so badly it has since had to be amputated above the knee.

We are pleased to report that according to latest advice there is some improvement in Mr Hopperton's condition - Mr Hopperton is managing director of Metlox, Ltd.
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Kilmarnock Herald and Ayrshire Gazette
March 6, 1942

An Orphan's Death

Teddy Peckham was a lad who worked at the Lyric Picture House. also with the railway carrier. He was a kindly lad, but did not get the pleasure out of life like other lads his age. He was an orphan as his mother died some years ago and then his father was killed in a 'bus accident. The lad struggled along and through it all was happy. His health gave way and within a short period he died. A few Ardrossan people had a kind thought for the lad, so they made a collection and buried him, and now we learn with the money left over from the collection the sponsors are going to erect a head-stone on his grave. But for the kind thought of a few people this lad might have been forgotten, but as it turned out he was honoured by some who knew him, and by others who knew him not. Such acts make real men and women.
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Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald
March 18, 1882

Alexander Brodie

OLD ALECK in dead! it was rumoured throughout the town and harbour districts on Monday last; and persons who knew him well said that the aged form of the old pilot would be much missed. He was a general favourite with all who frequented the pilot house. His genial, open countenance, obliging disposition, and friendly counsel gained him many friends. A native of Saltcoats, he sailed foreign from that port when Ardrossan was a port of less note than it is now: then he settled here, and for some time kept the dock the dock gates.

Thereafter he removed to the Pilot-house, where for well nigh 20 year he has acted as head pilot; and his voice and general deportment fitted him to command. We question those on board incoming or outgoing vessels over received their orders in a more clear or command tone of voice at any other shipping port. It's tones pierced the thick fog, and were heard amid the howling storm with remarkable distinctness; but now it is hushed, and has become for ever silent! Visited by sickness about three weeks ago the shock drove him prostrate, and he continued in a sinking condition up till Monday, when death broached him too. It found him in the quiet serenity of a beautiful spring morning in the evening of life, lying at anchor.
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Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald
March 18, 1910

Sundry Improvements

Bailie Flinn suggested the improvement of the paths on the Castlehill by raising the crown of them a little.

The Cave On The Hill.
Bailie McKellar moved that it be remitted to the Works Committee to open up the cave in the hill and get it put into sanitary condition with a view to making an attraction of it. The Council was an enterprising body in the meantime, and this was one thing which he thought they ought to attend to. He thought they could get a revenue out of it. There were two chambers in the cave, and the passage which was said to lead to Montfod had been built up, although he thought it ought to be opened again. The place was built in the twelfth century by the Normans, and the Normans, he understood, never made a passage without an opening at both ends. He had no doubt there had been a communication with Montfod Castle.

Mr Harvey thought this matter should be remitted to the Works Committee. The place ought never to have been closed up. It could be made to pay; at least it could be made to pay for its upkeep.
Mr Inglis said it was no use examining the place until it had been cleared out. There was certainly a well in the cave.
It was agreed to remit to Works Committee.
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Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald
March 23, 1951

Extension of Bus Service

At a meeting with the magistrates of Ardrossan last week representatives of the A.1 Bus Service stated that they had now I prepared their proposals for extending the local bus service from Beggs Terrace to Dalry Road via Centenary Place and Stanley Road, the proposal being that from Mondays to Fridays inclusive there should be a quarter hour service to 4 p.m. and a twenty minutes service thereafter; on Saturdays a quarter hour service to twelve noon and a twenty minutes service thereafter, and on Sundays a bus leaving Dalry Road at 9.15 a.m., next one 10.52 a.m. and hourly thereafter to 9.52 p.m. and a return service at suit. able times to link up.

It was explained that the above times were tentative and might require some adjustment. The Clerks were instructed to supply the bus service with a letter addressed to the Traffic Commissioners requesting the above service to be lodged with their application
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Kilmarnock Herald and Ayrshire Gazette
March 27, 1942

What Hugo Says

On Thursday night of last week great interest was taken in three policemen who were searching around the railway, Castle Hill and Winton Park in Ardrossan along with others. Some time later one policeman was observed carrying a seed bag and it seemed to be heavy. Later we learned that it was rifle bullets that were in the bag.

It seems that four boys got hold of one pom-pom gun, one rifle, hundreds of rounds of rifle ammunition and a hand grenade. The police had to search for hours and so carefully did they do their job that they had all the bullets and other stolen articles under their care.

We learn the story will reveal some amazing statements as to how and where the boys got the stolen articles. But for the quick action of the police, life might have been lost.
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Kilmarnock Herald and Ayrshire Gazette
March 28, 1952

A Year's Work At The Harbour

During the year 1951, 1,995 vessels arrived at the Port of Ardrossan, of which 167 were foreign going. Imports were 672,744 tons comprising oils, ores, scrap and miscellaneous goods and exports were 260,770 tons composed of oils, coal, steel and miscellaneous goods principally for coastwise destination.

These figures are taken from the Ardrossan burgh surveyor's annual report.
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Kilmarnock Herald and Ayrshire Gazette
April 1, 1949

Passing Of Provost Cunningham

It was with feelings of shocked incredulity that the folks of Ardrossan learned of the sudden, tragic end of Provost James Alexander Cunningham, who collapsed and died in Stevenston High Kirk last Sunday evening. after having delivered an address to the united congregation of the Stevenston Churches.

Earlier on that day he had piloted a newly completed ship from Ardrossan to Gourock and travelled back by bus to make ready for what was to prove his final public service. And that day was typical of his full active life in every phase of which he played the part to the manner born. In his workaday life no more typically nautical figure was ever seen on the bridge. Bedecked in official robes on ceremonial occasions he fulfilled his high office with splendid civic dignity. Justice, salutary and merciful, he dealt from the magisterial bench. Holders of more famous names envied his powerful oratory from the political platform where his vibrant voice and gift of quick repartee were precious assets,

November, 1935, saw the newly elected Councillor Cunningham take his place at the Council table. Two years later he became junior bailie and in a further year, senior bailie. In 1940 he was appointed a judge of police and in November, 1946, he attained the honoured position of Provost of the Burgh. In the three years preceding his accession to the Provostship he represented the burgh on the County Council, serving also on the School Management Committee for No. 9 Area and as convener of Ardrossan Academy.

Always politically active, he once owned allegiance to Scottish Nationalism but gravitated to the Conservative Party of which he was latterly chairman and guiding influence. The Rotary Club, Literary and Debating Society and many other organisations contributed to a life of which it was never more truly said, he lived to the full

His opinions many admired, many denounced, but the personality of James Cunningham was such as commanded the respect of all with whom it came in contact. Such a personality must inevitably be greatly missed.

The 'Kilmarnock Herald and Ayrshire Gazette joins in the deep, general sympathy which is felt for Mrs Cunningham and family on their great personal loss.
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