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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.

lucy_ashton188A month-long exhibition at Helensburgh Library in West King Street in February and March 2008 was dedicated to one of the Clyde’s best loved paddle steamers.

It was organised by Marion Gillies, vice-chairman of Helensburgh Community Council, and was inspired by the opening of the new Hermitage Academy building at Colgrain in February 2008.

sn1549onet"Prompt at 3.30pm the siren blew and within a short time Helensburgh Fire Engine arrived at the pier, for a demonstration. The firemaster and a 10 man crew performed successfully." — it was reported in the Helensburgh and Gareloch Times in December 1920.

So, Helensburgh now had its first motorised fire engine. SN1549 was a Dennis 'N' Type fire engine. This fire engine left the factory in December 1920 for Helensburgh. The lamps and bell were solid brass and the tyres were solid too.

rest-and-be-thankful-wOFFICIALLY it is the A83 Trunk Road. For centuries however travellers have known it as the Rest and Be Thankful.

At the top they have welcomed the chance to draw their breath and enjoy the view as they crossed the summit at 860 feet on the road that leads from Loch Long to Loch Awe via Glen Croe and past the picturesque Butterbridge into Glen Kinglas.

aquitania

AN important anniversary in both Gareloch and shipping history comes each year on February 21.

On that day in 1950, the famous old liner Aquitania completed her 443rd voyage after passing through Rhu Narrows (right) to reach the Shipbreaking Industries yard at Faslane.

ambulance_tDURING 1925 there were calls in Helensburgh for a motorised ambulance. Letters were continually letters sent to and published in the Helensburgh and Gareloch Times asking for a new ambulance.

At a meeting in March 1925, Town Council representatives, along with members of the Infirmary board, decided that ". . . there were not enough accidents to warrant a motor ambulance."

Helensburgh-UpperIT HAS been reported — and subsequently denied — that Network Rail is considering closing Helensburgh Upper Station.

The station has been named as 'at risk' in a route utilisation strategy which sets out a vision of the future for rail passengers and Scotland's thousands of miles of track and railway stations.

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