Just another WordPress weblog Mon, 02 Nov 2009 09:43:53 +0000 en hourly 1 Lifetime Achievement community Award for Les McCammont Mon, 02 Nov 2009 09:43:53 +0000 admin Saltcoats’ very own Leslie McCammont received a lifetime achievement award at the West Sound and West FM Community Awards.

He was presented with his award by Alastiar Crabb of Scotia Double Glazing (the sponsors of the event) at a gala awards ceremony held at Ayr Racecourse. He had been nominated by his local community for his work with the local Air Training Corps, for which he has been working for over 45 years.

Les is currently the Commanding Officer of 1138 (Ardrossan) Squadron and holds the rank of Flight Lieutenant. He works everyday to encourage and inspire young people of the community to get off the streets and develop their interests and skills in sports, discipline, aviation, in order to build self-respect for themselves and do something for the benefit of the community.

His contribution to his community can perhaps be best judged from this glowing tribute that one of his nominations gave him:

“Over the years Les has not only juggled his time working for the Air Training Corps but has also served our community as a Fire Fighter, Special Constable and more recently the Chieftain of the Ardrossan Highland Games jointly with his twin brother, Tom. Within the cadets, Les has given youngsters a chance to be something when others may have thought they were not worth bothering about. He has an ability to see the good and potential in others and to push them into being all they can be… Les should have retired from service within the Air cadets nearly five years ago but has continued to extend his service, despite ill health, to further serve both the Air Training Corps and our local community. Without a doubt, if Les had not participated as fully within our community, many young people would not have gained the experience, knowledge and confidence to reach their goals.”

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Local author weaves a spell with tales of Wee Cumbrae Thu, 01 Oct 2009 08:56:17 +0000 admin The meeting of Ardrossan and Saltcoat’s Rotary Club was chaired by Vice President Archie Macintyre due to the absence of President Bob Sharpe. The chief guests were John Steele, local author and speaker for the evening and Greta Murray, visiting rotarian from Canada from a Toronto club, Forest Hill.

John Steele, introduced by Donnie Shedden, is hardly a stranger to the club, having spoken here on at least two previous occasions. Today, the subject of his talk was Wee Cumbrae, an island in the Firth of Clyde, which his most recently published book is all about, detailing the island’s history.

The island of Wee Cumbrae is a beautiful place which first came to prominence in the 7th century when it was settled by an Irish saint and missionary. It subsequently became a place of pilgrimage which rivaled even Iona in its heydays. It was also extremely popular with royalty, particularly of the kings Richard I and II.

Since the island was located in the Firth of Clyde, many ships ran aground in storms or foggy weather in the 17th and 18th centuties, which led to the erection of a lighthouse on the island- a round tower with a coal-fired brazier on top which had to be lit and tended by the keepers. Unfortunately, there was no way to keep the brazier burning through heavy rains and storms, when ships were most likely to run aground, so it was eventually replaced by a proper light- at present, an automated beacon does the job.

The island has not been well known for a long time, since the owners never encouraged visitors, but it has recently been acquired by an Indian lady who plans to develop it into a holiday resort and connect it by ferry to Largs.

Mr. Steel also passed on copies of his book to several club members who took this opportunity to purchase them.

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Getting To Know The Three Towns Sun, 23 Aug 2009 15:20:15 +0000 admin The Three Towns known as Saltcoats, Stevenson and Ardrossan, are situated around the beautiful, beachy bay of Brodick. They are found just to the North West of the area of Kilwinning. Each town offer up an array of historic landmarks, shopping strips and lots of things to do and see and they are all conveniently located close to the Isle of Arran.

Each town is known specifically for its contribution to the community. Ardrossan is geared more towards a relaxed and laid back feel for its townspeople and visitors. The Saltcoats area is more shopping and tourism oriented and Stevenson is more about the growth of business and the importance of living healthy. All have areas and places to attribute to the old world charm and feel, but also have the lure of modern day conveniences and townships.

The town of Ardrossan is home to the Ardrossan Castle. Today, the castle lies in ruins and pretty much all of it is gone, save for a part of the North Tower. It has given up many of its masonry stones to Oliver Cromwell, which in turn was used to aid in the building of a citadel. The town of Ardrossan is located inn an area of land that boasts of incredible natural beauty and awe-inspiring scenery and views.

Both the Saltcoats and Stevenson areas offer up their heritage and communities dedicated to preserving their towns past and also welcoming guests and visitors to their growing future. Museums and churches dot the areas of Saltcoats and Stevenson, as well as shopping complexes and entertainment that is found in many seafronts of today. One can easily find entertainment galore for any age in both areas. Saltcoats, is known mainly for it’s Town Trail that takes visitors and locals alike, on a trek throughout the town. A dynamite factory, built by Alfred Nobel, is also located in the town.

Saltcoats is an area that is permeated with historic and old world values. The heritage of this town is one steeped rich with contraband smugglers of years long past. The many landmarks found here, as well as the town’s streets and homes, present visitors with the feeling of stepping back in time. All three towns have much to offer to its permanent residents and guests.

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The Famous Eglington Country Park Sun, 23 Aug 2009 15:11:10 +0000 admin Just east of Saltcoats, on the outskirts of the picturesque town of Kilwinning, is the enchanting world that surrounds you when you enter Eglinton Country Park. Trails for horses, bicycles and pedestrians wind through the property. These trails take you through woodlands, along rivers and streams, and fields exposing you to a wide variety of flora and fauna. Changing seasons bring new delights to the environment and you may never tire of visiting this delightful park.

Eglinton Country Park is a spectacular place located on the old Eglinton Castle estate. The park occupies a huge parcel of land totaling 988 acre. Close to two hundred acres alone is prime woodland and provides a great area for bird and wildlife watching. In the heart of the park is the old Eglinton Castle and estate that once belonged to the Eglinton family.

Nestled among its acreage, is the gorgeous Clement Wilson Gardens. These gardens are an ideal spot to have an intimate picnic or leisurely stroll with the family. There are children designated play areas and no one is at a loss for parking. If you are wondering where everything is located within the park, you can easily find it by visiting the visitor center. At the visitor center you will also find an exhibit that tells the story of Eglinton Country Park’s history. For those wishing to buy a souvenir to remember their visit to the park by or other novelty items, the park houses a gift shop that should meet your needs.

A restaurant, the Tournament Cafe, is located on site and allows you to purchase, food, drinks and any other supplies that may be needed. Eglinton Country Park and its facilities are handicapped equipped and loans out wheelchairs and other items that may be needed for handicap individuals. For anyone wishing to extend the visit beyond a day trip, there is also a cottage that can be rented any time of the year. Campsites with overnight facilities can be rented for a small fee.

The ranger service offers guided treks through the park and last anywhere from one to two hours. Throughout the year, Eglinton Country Park is home to many events and celebrations. Although the park is fully functional all year round, the visitor center is only open from the beginning of Easter until late October. Many groups and school children visit the park annual as a field trip and to gather a learning experience. If the weather turns inclement, there are covered shelters for visitors to seek refuge in. In addition to the outside play areas for children, there are also inside play areas so children can be occupied if they are forced inside by the weather.

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What To See When Walking The Saltcoats Town Trail Sun, 23 Aug 2009 15:05:30 +0000 admin The Saltcoats Town Trail is truly a wonder unto itself. Letting you see many historical landmarks as well as modern day buildings and businesses, the trail is a loop that one can walk around the main part of the town area. Walking the trail will take you back in time and let you experience the laid back attitude that many Saltcoats inhabitants enjoyed and pretty much still do.

Most start their trek on the Saltcoats Town Trail at the Saltcoats Railway Station. Immediately you will start to see such historic buildings as the Town House, which was built in 1826. There are many old houses you will come across as you steadily make your way down the street. You will soon find yourself at the house of the famous Captain Betsy Miller, who was a note-worthy sea captain. She passed away in the year 1864 and it was said that she might have been the only woman sea captain that actually sailed.

Such places as The Grange Hotel and The Windy-ha are both aging, fine hotels and can be seen on the trail. The Saltcoats Free Church can be seen close by and it served as the Free Church Academy for students. Sights such as The Braes, which is located by the shipbuilding yards and Saltpans, can be seen. There is also a creek nearby that many smugglers used many years ago when smuggling in their tobacco, whiskey rum and other contraband. You will have no problem envisioning a time, as the atmosphere hangs heavy, when illegal wares were smuggled and pedaled through the streets.

On the trail you will find North Aryshire Museum, which house many relics of years past and times almost forgotten. Your trek along the Saltcoats Town Trail will end at Landsborough and Trinity Church and will put you back where you began. The streets are colorfully lined and dotted with gorgeous planting of flowers and perfectly manicured lawns and yards. As you explore the Saltcoats Town Trail, the quaint old world feel grabs you. There are many new buildings and businesses that have taken up residence and offer a dose of modern day as well.

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Auchenharvie Golf Course and Club Sun, 23 Aug 2009 15:00:05 +0000 admin The Auchenharvie Golf Course is located in the middle of Stevenson and Saltcoats. This beautiful golf course has only nine holes, but can be played as if it were a regular 18-hole golf course. Although this course in its appearance looks to be relatively easy, it is found to be harder to play than thought. Two holes on the course are accented by water. A public course, it also has a driving range. The entire course is played around a lake and the ruins of a castle.

Auchenharvie Golf Course has long par three holes and some of the narrowest playing greens that are around. The course offers some of the best holes to be played by both beginners and experienced golfers. It has really great amenities, club facilities and services and is a great value for anyone wanting to play a round. Beautifully manicured and well kept, the course has a great overall rating. Golf course staff are very friendly and enjoy giving advice, and pointers, to anyone who is interested in improving their game. They are also very customer oriented and will help whenever they can and when asked.

Laid out over gentle rolling hills, the golf course offers up astounding breath-taking views as you play. Designed by a man named James Braid, Auchenharvie Golf Course first opened its doors in the year 1914. The club is housed on the premises and sports a lounge and a bar, which is open from March until late October. There are appropriate facilities for both men and women to change into golf play attire.

The Auchenharvie Golf Course has a well-stocked golf shop that can supply all your golfing needs. They also offer assistance with golfing lessons and guidance if needed. The food in the clubhouse is superb and Scottish hospitality wins over any visitor or player.

To find out further information on the course, its club and fees, you should contact the course directly. You can call for information for tournaments as well.

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The History of Saltcoats Scotland Fri, 21 Aug 2009 01:13:55 +0000 admin The history of Saltcoats in Scotland is one of an ancient small town, settling its inhabitants as they all try to make their way with various livelihoods. The area known as Saltcoats is a sea-faring port. Around 170 years or so ago, the town had few settlers and the ones that were there started the name Salt-cots. This was due to their humble, small cots or cottages in which they lived and worked, salt making in kettles. The salt was made for a various number of reasons, one was it was used to cure and preserve fish that had been caught.

The people who live there, then and now, have always been a trade-laden town. Whether it was salt, coal or weaving then, or todays importing timber and exporting coal, trades seem to be what has predominantly been dealt with. There are a great number of people who work as weavers though agents and there are also dairy and agriculture farmers as well. The production of dairy products, wheat, oats and potatoes are considered quite a valuable commodity.

The town of Saltcoats is one that is alive with inhabitants that have been living there a very long time. Ancient streets lay claim to some of the oldest homes and buildings that have seen their share of many transitions and even tobacco, rum and whiskey smugglers. The streets are lined with old shops, office, churches and such. A great relaxing, lazy day of strolling around the small and meek town makes for an enjoyable, and educational, experience. Discoveries lie around every corner and there is much to be learned of the town’s past and people. Walking around Saltcoats you will notice that much of the concrete has different color variations, this is due to the salt crystals

Churches are abundant and line the streets, very much a part of Saltcoats past. Catholic churches and parishes are found quite frequently throughout the small sea-faring town. One church has even opened its doors today as a museum. It houses many local relics of the past. There were also a variety of craftsman within the small town such as blacksmiths, boot and shoemakers, makers of fine linen, wool and stonemasons. Watch and clock makers inhabit Saltcoats as well.

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West Scotland Stagecoach and Travel Fri, 21 Aug 2009 01:06:24 +0000 admin Stagecoach West Scotland has bus services that reach a large area of Scotland. They operate regularly throughout West Scotland. The buses are well recognized, emblazoned with their vivid colors of blue, red, white and orange. This transit system got its start in 1997 and has continued its reign as the main transit bus system of the area. Throughout West Scotland, the main bus station depots are located in nine different locations.

They have made great amounts of upgrades to their buses and transit system and they now possess the most modernized fleet of Scotland. Many of their buses are equipped for easy access with entry and exit ramps that have few/no steps to climb or descend. Wheelchairs can easily roll onto and off the buses, with very little effort. Some of the company’s buses are built with top-notch, modern double-decker bus seating and are constructed for maximum passenger safety.

One can easily go online or call by phone to find out all the times and services that are offered by the Stagecoach West Scotland transit system. It is a very economical way to see landmarks and travel around while on vacation or if you live there. They offer bargain ticketing and have many different tickets for travel that you can purchase. These tickets allow you access to the system and many other bonuses as well. The system has staff ready to assist you with your journey travel and plans.

If you are shopping while you are traveling, many of the Stagecoach’s buses have specially designated areas where your shopping buggies and the like can be parked while you ride. Whether you are a frequent traveler or just travel occasionally, the bus system is an ideal way to travel. It helps save on money as well. Do inquire about special group discounted rates and offers if you are traveling in groups,. Remember, you want to save as much money as you possibly can while traveling.

Stagecoach West Scotland is also embarking on some pretty interesting endeavors to keep their transit system on a continued road of modern day success. They are asking the younger generation to help come up with ideas to make the system better and more appealing to all age groups. It looks like the company is well on its way to many years of success and service.

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Sandylands Holiday Park And Resort Fri, 21 Aug 2009 00:59:49 +0000 admin The Sandylands Holiday Park and Resort are nestled conveniently in the Saltcoats, Ayrshire area. Everyone in the family, no matter their age, will enjoy and love the park and what it holds. It is purposely set on the beautiful Ayrshire coast, very close to some of the most beautiful sandy beaches. You have the best of both worlds when staying at the park. On one hand you have the salty, gorgeous ocean and on the other hand you have the clean, chlorinated, heated, warm pools. Some of the best golf courses known around the globe are located nearby.

This family park and resort has so much to offer, such as the Buccaneers Family Showbar. You can order up a round of refreshing drinks for the whole family and also partake of some shows and dancing. Sandylands Holiday Park and Resort offers different accommodation packages and the longer you stay the more money you can save. What with the awe-inspiring views of Arran, the park and resort does offer you the most you can turn out of a holiday with the family.

While you are there, you can find a fishing area not far from Sandylands Park and the resort offers up sport programs to participate in as well. Specially designated areas for the smaller children to enjoy in water areas and playgrounds are also located within the resort. They have shops and some of the best entertainment for families around. Some the shows are aimed specifically towards the very young, so there is indeed something here for everyone.

Sandylands Holiday Park and Resort are easily reached and accessible by ferry trips to and from the isles. It is a haven for golf enthusiasts and individuals who love to take scenic walks around the area. Gorgeous mountains and glens are all waiting to be explored and viewed at your leisure. There are caravans that you may rent or you can even consider buying one. The staff of Sandylands Park and Resort will gladly help you with any information or questions you may have about the grounds and facilities. If you are contemplating a vacation home here, then you will not be disappointed.

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