From Our Files, March 25 2022

In 1997: Local treasure hunters Jeff McDaniel, 11, and Ross Angus, 10, found an 1862 Queen Victoria Halfpenny. It was discovered by the intrepid explorers as they were digging a den in the garden of the old Witchburn Hospital. The coin would be worth around £600 if it was in mint condition. However, due to its degraded condition, this one is not quite so valuable, but even so the duo still have no intention of selling it.

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TEN YEARS AGO
Friday March 23, 2012

Work on all-weather pitch starts next week

Work will begin next week on Campbeltown’s long-awaited all-weather sports pitch.

The final confirmation of the project at Kinloch Green next to Aqualibrium has been
hailed by local sports figures as the start of a renaissance for sport in the area.

Specialist contractors AP Thompson based in Oxfordshire will move its workers in on
March 26 to begin preparing the ground.

After 10 years of campaigning, the start of the work would be a proud moment for
everyone who has worked hard on the campaign through South Kintyre Sports
Council, a spokesman said.

He added: ‘After a dignified campaign by the community over the last 10 years, it’s
still hard to believe it is actually happening.

‘We look forward to working with the council to maximise use for our local sports
clubs and casual users.’

Last weekend’s Pupils game was called off, and club secretary Campbell Robertson
said having the all-weather pitch as an alternative venue would be a huge boost.

He said: ‘At the moment the boys have to travel up to Tarbert over winter to train.
The younger boys don’t know what it’s like to have good facilities.’

Alex McKinven, chairman of the Campbeltown Community Football Group, said:
‘What we are looking for is a renaissance of the game at youth level.

‘It’s going to give kids an opportunity to play the game at any time of day, on a proper
surface.’

TWENTY FIVE YEARS AGO
Friday March 28, 1997

In 1997: Simon Rochford at the opening of Campbeltown Pottery, which is now in
premises on Bolgam Street.

Pottery opens in Campbeltown

The problem of looking for that more unusual, yet special, gift could be a thing of the
past with the opening of a new pottery in Campbeltown.

Campbeltown Pottery, based at Hazelburn Business Park, not only sells genuine
handmade pottery featuring a sophisticated unique design but also produces tableware
with a difference.

Campbeltown Pottery is owned and run by a potter with more than 13 years’ experience in the trade. Simon Rochford moved to the town earlier this year after working in the pottery on Mull for over a decade.

After deciding to set up business on his own and scouring Scotland for the ideal
location, Simon, his wife and two sons settled on Campbeltown.

Since arriving in the town, Simon has been busy producing items for sale ready for
the official launch and opening of his pottery this week.

To mark the launch of his sophisticated designs, much of which are based on themes
relating to the sea, his work will be on show during an exhibition in the Oystercatcher,
Campbeltown, this coming Sunday.

Simon’s work will also be on sale in the Oystercatcher after the launch along with
other locations including Talbot.

Alternatively for a chance to see Simon’s beautiful designs, the pottery workshop at
Hazelburn is open to anyone wanting to browse.

FIFTY YEARS AGO
Thursday March 23, 1972

Orangemen at big Glasgow rally

A coach load of Campbeltown Orangemen from LOL district number 53 joined the
massive Scottish and Ulster Orangemen’s rally in Glasgow at the weekend.

An estimated 40,000 marchers including 30 bands took part in the parade from
Blythswood Square to Queen’s Park, where the rally took place. Speakers highlighted
the present Northern Ireland crisis.

The Campbeltown contingent received a special welcome and was thanked for making the long journey.

Many members were pleased to meet up with a Campbeltonian who has gone to the
top in the Orange order, Mrs Annie Ranachan.

Mrs Ranachan, who has visited ‘the wee toon’ with city deputations in past years, is a
former Grand Mistress.

SEVENTY YEARS AGO
Thursday March 20, 1952

Saddell Social Club

Mr Dugald Semple gave a lantern lecture on ‘With Camp, Caravan and Camera’ last
Thursday in the school hall.

There was a large attendance of members and visitors from other districts. Mr CK Brown of Ifferdale presided.

Before showing his slides, Mr Semple spoke about his open-air experiences in a bell
tent and old Paisley bus at Lynnwood Moss.

Thousands of people came to see the supposed hermit, who at that time was working as a draughtsman in an engineering shop.

He later moved to Bridge of Weir where he lived in a caravan for nine years, giving
lectures on the simple life during his tours in summer.

Afterwards he went to London to lecture on food economy at the Imperial Exhibitions in the People’s Palace.

Returning to Kilmacolm he acted as lecturer to the Scottish Food League, and also
became nature corresponded to the Glasgow Bulletin.

Mr Semple told also about his various experiences as a land worker at his hill croft
near Beith and contended that the solution to most of our present social problems was
to live closer to nature.

Over 80 beautiful slides were shown on the screen, depicting camp life, a trip to the
Trossachs, and nature studies of birds et cetera.

Mr R Lamont MA proposed a hearty vote of thanks to the lecturer and also to Mr JR
Morrison of Campbeltown for his efficiency as lantern operator.