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IN the late summer of 1971 a young German girl arrived on Loch Lomondside on a hiking holiday — and disappeared. What followed turned out to be one of the most fascinating yarns from the early days of my career in journalism. This is what I wrote for the Helensburgh Advertiser of September 17 that year . . .

Frauke-KissenkotterTHE RAIN lashed down in buckets. The midges were out in force. The road curved on for seemingly endless mile after mile. It was cold, wet and miserable — and the mystery of Frauke Kissenkotter was about to begin.

Uncle-George-in-Ypres-w

Journalist Colin Donald tells the story of his great uncle, Cardross man George Chrystal, who died in one of the first World War One gas attacks at Ypres in 1915.

george chrystal

WHAT do we know of great uncle George Chrystal?

Wren-Marion-Reilly-wSTORIES from World War Two usually feature bravery or tragedy, but for an unemployed Helensburgh girl enlisting was to result in romance.

Marion Reilly, who died in September 2016, spent her later years in Cambridge with her daughter Linda. She treasured memories of her wartime work on degaussing at Helensburgh pier, through which she met the man who was to become her husband.

McLellan-pageQueen-Maud-McLellan

The late Miss Maud L.MacLellan, OBE, TD, of Auchenault, Helensburgh, tells of the period during her wartime service with the Auxiliary Training Service when she commanded a centre where the then Princess, now Queen Elizabeth, learnt to drive.

This article, believed to have been written by Walter W.Blackie about 1943, was originally published in the Scottish Art Review XI, No.4, 1968, by permission of Miss Agnes A.C.Blackie who found it among her father’s papers. It is published here by kind permission of two of the author's grand-daughters, Kathleen A.Salzberg and Ruth Currie, who kindly supplied the images from the family collection.

Walter-W.Blackie-a-wIN the early spring of 1902 my wife and I, having decided to leave Dunblane where we had lived for some seven years, were fortunate enough to happen on the site at the crown of the hill in Upper Helensburgh where ‘The Hill House’ now stands. We took the feu, and decided to build.

Press-Barons-wCHRISTMAS often includes large slices of nostalgia, but looking back can serve to remind that many things do not change very much with the passage of time. 

That thought kept recurring when I visited Helensburgh Library on Friday December 23 2011 to have a look at the Helensburgh Advertiser of 50 years ago.

Sergeant-James-RestonA 14 year-old boy endured a night of horror when World War Two bombs fell on Cardross. 

This is how James Retson recalled the evening of March 14 1941, the second night of the Clydebank Blitz . . .

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