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                       How the Villages Grew  >    

How the villages grew - a timeline - hover your mouse over a date below the arrow to reveal what was happening....

 Arrochar,Ttarbet and Ardlui village TIMELINE
1733 1767 1777    1800   1844 1847 1850   1885 1890      1910-1915   1920  1928    1940   1960    1976  2006

How the villages grew: -


Information so far.




The first Church was built by the MacFarlanes. Remains of which stand in the old part of the Arrochar graveyard.




The first Statistical report states that there are 466 inhabitants.




Evidence of School being in existence.




Loch Long road built by the Duke of Argyll.




Statistical report states that the population had fallen to 379.

Under 10 years old 105

Over 10 years old 274



Pre 1800

There were large houses built some of which are still occupied today.

Ardgartan House – demolished.

Succoth Farm – still occupied.

Stronafyne – still occupied.

Glenloin House – still occupied.

New Tarbet - Invereoch seat of the Clan MacFarlanes, renamed Arrochar House by the Colquhouns of Luss. Renamed again to the Cobbler Hotel and now the Claymore Hotel.


1st Tarbet House – demolished.

Ben Cruach Lodge

Stuckgowan House

Plus Ardlui farms (info to follow soon)




Up until now houses and farms were largely in the hands of one individual. By this date farms were being split up into smaller farms and this seen an increase in population to 560 (half of what it is at the present day)




Arrochar Church Manse




From the statistical report services in the villages consisted of :-

14 Farms
3 Grocers
7 Public Houses
6 Shoemakers
3 Smiths
1 Master Wright
2 wrights
23 individuals employed in the herring fishing. 


Ballyhennan Free Church built / Free Church Manse.




Arrochar Parish Church built



1850 –1900

Some of today’s larger houses were built in the later half of the nineteenth century:-

Invereoch, Daildarroch, Mansefield, Oakbank, Ravenswood, High Bellevue.



1880 –1890

Towards the end of the nineteenth century 1880 –1890 with the construction of the West Highland Railway small cottages started to appear along the line from Morelaggan to Ardlui. Also, Luss Estates were building cottages for workers resulting in Tigh na Gare, Chestnut, Rose Hawthorn and Mayfield cottages in Arrochar and Tighloan at Tarbet. It is also thought that a Glasgow family round about this time built High Kirkfield. (It has the style of a tenement building)




Arrochar Parish Hall was built with the costs being met mainly by public subscription collected locally by the Rev James Dewar.




Arrochar Hotel was destroyed by fire.



1910 – 1915

With the coming of the Torpedo range saw the Glebe Cottages (Admiralty Cottages) being built at Tighness and at the range Weir Cottages and the Range Houses



1922 –1925

Early in the 1920’s the three Steel Houses were built at Succoth for Forestry Commission workers.




The sea wall at Arrochar was built running from Tighness to the Village.




The housing reform act was passed requiring Councils to provide housing.  Kirkfield Place was built; this was the first non ‘tied’ houses in the village.  Because Labour Government passed the housing act the houses were known locally as ‘The Red Square’ or the ‘Kremlin’.



1939 –1945

The War Years. Work was plentiful in the village mostly connected to the Range, which was used for loading submarines, and Loch Long being used as a safe harbour for surface ships. A shortage in accommodation for uniformed Staff resulted in all the local hotels, The Ross, The Arrochar and The Loch Long being taken over by the Armed Forces and used for this purposes.  Tarbet Hotel was used by Kelvinside Academy as a school. Arrochar & Tarbet Station was very busy with troops, Canadian, American and British embarking here on route to Inveraray training camps. Canteens for ensure these troops had a hot meal were set up at the Station and in the village of Arrochar at the ‘Crazy House’. 

1945 –1953

As the war ended the villages again seen an influx of workers as the Loch Sloy Hydro Electric Dam was under construction and the Forestry Commission was putting their heavy restocking programme of timber in place.  The requirement for housing resulted in Cobbler View (LA), Succoth (FC) and Ballyhennan Crescent being built.




The Loch Long Hotel at Tighness burnt to the ground with the loss of four lives.




Bemmerside (HE) and MacKenzie Avenue (LA) were built as still houses were needed for Hydro board employees and the workers involved in the creation of the Glen Douglas depot. Towards the end of the 1960s MacFarlane Drive and MacFarlane Place were built. The creation of the ‘New’ Loch Lomond road provide more work and also the opportunity for people to be resident in the villages and commute to the town for work




Beechwood was built by a housing association on the site of the Beech wood on the Back Road.




Glencroe School closed.



19th December the Range closed



The Orchard, a private development, was built on the site of the orchard of Arrochar House were once pears, apples, plums, damsons, vegetables and flowers grew in abundance.




Sadly to make way for the years of great expansion small cottages have been abandoned and left to ruin, with their memories in the mists of time.


Arrochar, Tarbet & Ardlui.

The name of the parish of Arrochar has been a matter of some dispute.  It has sometimes been derived from the Gaelic “Ard tir,” the high land; or from a Gaelic word indicating “the land on the east” – a name which would have been given by the Gaelic-speaking folks of Argyll on the west side of Loch Long.  Probably a clue to the true meaning of the word Arrochar is found in a Latin deed of A.D. 1225, by which the then Earl of Lennox bequeaths “the upper Arrochar of Luss” to his son Gilbert; and the word would seem to be an ancient name for a portion of land, it has also been connected with the Latin word for plough, making the term Arrochar mean “plough land”. You may choose whichever derivation you see fit, for the origin of the name, like the origin of the inhabitants, is lost in the mist of ages.

The land surrounding the villages in days gone past was the homeland of the Clan MacFarlane. They were noted cattle thieves and the moon was called “MacFarlane’s Lantern”. Their slogan and battle cry was “Loch Sloy” then an almost inaccessible loch among the mountains to which they drove the stolen cattle.  Their castle was on Inveruglas Isle on Loch Lomond, this was destroyed by Cromwell’s troops and after that the MacFarlanes lived at Tarbet.

Dorothy Wordsworth in her travels remembers Arrochar as a place where it always rains, where the mountains are grand and people are simple. Robbie Burns writes of Arrochar as a “land of savage hills, swept by savage rains, peopled by savage sheep, tended by savage people.

However much truth there may be in all these descriptions, none of them tell anything of the really interesting Arrochar, the wild romantic Arrochar of long ago. If one were to seek to advertise this romantic Arrochar, he would tell of the grey days when the clouds hang their veils of mystery along the mountain tops, and the mists throw their fringes deep into the valleys; he would speak of the moonlight nights when Loch Lomond lies black and eerie among the shadows, when the Cobbler sees himself reflected from the fairy world which sleeps in the silvery depths of Loch long, when the owl hoots and the heron screams, and when the ghosts of the wild MacFarlanes look out from the shadows of the rocks, or move noiseless among the black firs on the hill side. He would mention Tighvechtan and Ballyhennan, and Tomnacroich and Tomnahianish, and all the other barbarous-like places which say so little to the stranger but which mean so much.  For this is the true Arrochar, the romantic Arrochar, which any one may see and hear and feel if they listen to the old folks of the villages.