Arrochar Tarbet and Ardlui Heritage Group




                     Front Part - 2 > John Henry Carson CBE 1902 - 1982                                                                                   | Cemetery |


The inscription reads: -



John Henry Carson of Arrochar

In Memory Of Our Father

John H Carson C.B.E.

1902 - 1982

Who Lived In & Loved Arrochar





John H Carsen CBE




This is a commemorative plaque located at the front of the cemetery - between the road and the cemetery boundary hedge. It is places in a circular flower bed with small trees.












John Henry Carson  C.B.E.  1902-1982

By   Elizabeth Findley

Born into a Glasgow Highland working class family,  my father John Carson came to Arrochar in 1925 to work as a labourer at the Torpedo Range. For the interview he wore a bowler hat and spats ,which always amused us. He was an electrician to trade, but jobs were scarce after the First War  and he returned to his trade in time.

Johnny H Carson
Johnny second from the left on the front row. Taken on the steps of the Single Quarters at the Range in the late 1920’s


Johnny, as he was known  in Arrochar was a keen football player and a champion swimmer and diver. He loved dancing and motorbikes and amateur dramatics in the days when Arrochar put on an annual Gilbert and Sullivan production in the parish hall.

In 1934, he married Elizabeth Rennie a domestic servant from Glasgow who worked for the Hendry family at Fascadail and they moved into 2c Admiralty Cottages. They were to have three children Joan ,Elizabeth and Iain. Joan died of meningitis in 1942


John H Carson CBE 1952

John H Carson CBE 1952

John H Carson CBE 1952

John H Carson CBE 1952


In 1936 my father joined the Labour Party and became politically active. He stood against John Galbraith the sitting county councillor for Arrochar,  Tarbet and Ardlui in 1940 and was defeated.  The reactions to a young man from his background ,challenging the status quo in a rural parish one may only imagine.

The war years changed perceptions in Britain and Arrochar returned a Labour County Councillor in 1946. John Carson believed passionately in education for all children as far as their abilities would take them.

It was an education he himself was denied through family poverty.

Rural housing was another of his causes at a time when so many families lived in tied farm cottages with few amenities. Then as now ,there was a serious shortage of council housing.

Johnny H Carson and Arrochar Football team
Johnny in his football days - centre of the front row.


Johnny H Carson in Arrochar Village Hall pantomime
Johnny second from the right in the front row, in one of the many ‘stage productions’ he helped organize in the old village hall.


The parish hall was at the centre of village life and the Hall Committee was one of the busiest on which he served On a wider scene, my father served on the Education Committee for West Dunbartonshire and after the setting up of the Health Service in 1948, he was a member and later chairman of the Dunbartonshire National Health Executive Committee. Nationally he served on the Rent Tribunal for Scotland and was active in his Trade Union the ETU.

But it was his own parish and its people that my father loved best. A tolerant man with no time for religious bigotry, he wanted a united community without social  class and religious divisions To this end, there was always slipperene to be bought for the next dance in the hall or posters to be lettered for a whist drive or some old person needing a visit. He felt that social events of all kinds bound a community together . Had he made a fortune, he always said he would have left it to Arrochar for a new parish hall.


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