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Drunk set fire to signal box

ONE of the more unusual aspects of Helensburgh and district railway history was a fire that destroyed the signal box at Cardross on the evening of April 26 1971.

A very drunk passenger missed his stop, disembarked at Cardross and proceeded to cause mayhem. The signalman, Jack Vickers, fled the box, whereupon the drunk set fire to it.

Last Updated ( Sunday, 05 December 2010 10:10 )


Henry Bell and the Comet

HELENSBURGH'S first Provost, steamship pioneer Henry Bell (1767-1830), came to live in the burgh in 1806.

Already a successful businessman, engineer and architect, he built the Baths Hotel (later the Queen’s Hotel) in East Clyde Street to run with his wife Margaret as a spa near the marine villas of the wealthy Glasgow merchants who either lived in the town or kept a mansion as a summer holiday home.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 29 April 2010 15:17 )

Celebrating Henry Bell

ON August 6 2012 it will be the bicentenary of the first commercial sailing of Henry Bell’s Comet steamship.

Will celebrations be organised, if so by whom, and what will they consist of? The 100th and 150th anniversary celebrations set a high standard to be followed.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 29 April 2010 15:21 )

Clyde Celebration: Comet to Waverley

THIS exhibition took place from September 13-16 1997 in the Pillar Hall, Victoria Halls, Helensburgh, and was a celebration of the Clyde and all that the river meant to the people of Helensburgh.

A fine working model of the Comet was displayed along with maps, photographs and text tracing the history of the development of the burgh with the coming of steam navigation.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 29 April 2010 15:22 )

Helensburgh's steamship tragedy

ONE of the Clyde’s worst ever tragedies took place only yards away from Helensburgh pier on Monday March 21 1842, when 20 people died after the steamship Telegraph exploded.

Much of the detail about the tragedy was unearthed by a Bishopbriggs man, Craig Boyd, the great grandson of William Ewing, the Telegraph’s captain and one of the fatalities.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 29 April 2010 15:22 )

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First 2016 Open Meeting

r.b.cunninghame-graham-wThe first Open Meeting of 2016 is on January 27 at Helensburgh Tennis Club at 7.30pm, when Lachie Munro will describe 'The Many Lives of Robert Bontine Cunningham Graham — the Uncrowned King of Scotland'.

Winter Talks 2015-16

  • Wednesday September 30 2015 — Melissa Simpson: Hermitage Park: past, present and future
  • Wednesday October 28 — AGM at 7pm; Fraser Noble of McGruers: My family has been building boats since the 11th Century
  • Wednesday November 25 — Sir Malcolm Colquhoun and James Pearson: The Clan Colquhoun and the History of Helensburgh

  • Wednesday January 27 2016 — Lachie Munro: The Many Lives of Robert Bontine Cunningham Graham — the Uncrowned King of Scotland
  • Wednesday February 24 — Sue Furness, Fiona Jackson: Hidden Heritage of a Landscape — Vengeful Vikings and Reckless Rustlers
  • Wednesday March 30 — Fiona Baker: Boutcher's Banks — the Genesis of Helensburgh?

Meetings are normally in the upstairs room at Helensburgh Tennis Club, Suffolk Street, at 7.30pm.

Charity Number

Scottish Charity