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THE residents of Helensburgh were fortunate to escape more or less unscathed from the aerial bombardment in 1940-41, although there were anti-aircraft gun sites on the Blackhill above the town, and at Cardross and Kilcreggan, co-operating with nearby searchlight batteries.

Andrew Jeffrey in his book “This Time of Crisis”, published by Mainstream Publishing Ltd., records that the burgh was on the route of the first German bomber to drop bombs on the West of Scotland, four falling on Mull, near Salen and Torosay, at midnight on Tuesday July 11 1940.

IN May 1939 a census presented to the Town Council showed that 3,500 children could be accommodated in Helensburgh, mainly from Glasgow but also from areas between the burgh and the city.

Should the order be given they could arrive within two hours. Churches would be used as an initial processing point.

crew_picA HELENSBURGH airman who died when his plane was shot down over France during the Second World War is commemorated on the war memorial in Hermitage Park.

Much is known about the last two months of the life of Sergeant (Air Gunner) Campbell Lowrie, who was born in 1912, the son of John Lowrie and his second wife, Jessie.

Behrendt-11-wTHREE prisoner-of-war camps on Garelochside were an important feature of life in Helensburgh and Garelochside during World War Two.

Camp no.582 was at Blairvadach, more or less on the site of the existing outdoor centre but south of the existing road — although it was north of the original shore road. Not far away was another camp at Stuckenduff, and there was a third at Whistlefield.

Capt-Thomson-2-wA HELENSBURGH man was a World War One flying ace and won two medals for gallantry . . . at the age of only 20.

But Captain George Edwin Thomson lost his life in a flying accident in England just a few weeks later.

A REAR gunner from Helensburgh, Drew Gibson, died on active service, in February 1941.

His nephew, the late Councillor Ronnie Kinloch, chairman of the Helensburgh and Lomond Area Committee of Argyll and Bute Council, recalled: “Drew's home was in East Clyde Street, near Craighelen Tennis Club, and his eldest daughter, Donella Smith, still lives in the town.

Arado-Admiral-Hipper-wAN eagerly waited seaplane landed on the Gareloch in 1940 . . . then tipped over and sank.

It was a captured World War Two Arado 196a floatplane, which was being brought to the Marine Aircraft Experimental Establishment at Helensburgh and Rhu.

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