Photo book takes a look at Old Carradale

Old Carradale by Iain Wright.
Old Carradale by Iain Wright.

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A man with Carradale connections dating back to 1952 has published a book of photographs focusing on the village’s famous herring fishing heritage.

Old Carradale is a softback book containing 60 images, each with its own fully descriptive caption, by Iain Wright, a long-standing visitor to Carradale, who now has a holiday home in the village.

Carradale was famous for herring fishing in the Firth of Clyde for hundreds of years but the herring are unfortunately no more in the Loch Fyne waters and fishing boats now trawl for shellfish and prawns.

Since the early 19th century, the village was an attractive port for the Clyde steamers, when regular annual visitors came as tourists. Visitors nowadays are more likely to travel to the village for its challenging golf course, walking routes and various hotels, bars and restaurants.

The photographs in Iain’s book are from the 19th and early 20th centuries, and include the early steamers, skiffs and herring boats at the piers, as well as images of Paterson’s Bakery, Airds cottages, Carradale Hotel, Waterfoot and Port Righ Bay.

‘The book is dedicated to Archie Paterson, on whose herring boat, Harvest Queen, my brother and I spent many happy days and nights,’ Iain told the Courier.

Iain’s family first came to stay in the ‘big bay’ in a caravan, which failed to negotiate the Grogport hill and had to go back via the A83 long route. In later years the family stayed in Bayview, then Lochpark, and eventually in the Carradale Hotel, run then by Jim McDougall and his wife, and until recently by Marcus and Morag Adams and now the Erskine family.

‘In summer 1960 I was one of a party of Kelvinside schoolboys who camped for a fortnight beside the golf course at Port Righ Bay – shown on page 40 in the book,’ Iain said. ‘Over the years I have grown up with residents of the village, many of whom have helped me with the captions in the book.

‘My wife Helen and I now have a holiday home in Carradale, where we continue to enjoy village life.’

The book is being produced by Stenlake Publishing in Ayrshire, who have previously been responsible for Old Kintyre and Old Campbeltown and Machrihanish, among many others in past years.

It is available to buy in Carradale, from the village shop, the Glen Bar and Restaurant, and the Ashbank and Carradale hotels, and can also be ordered directly from Stenlake at 01290 551122.