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Bishop's Glen Rifle Ranges

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Target lifts, 2008, Fox
Target lifts

Two rifle ranges have been identified in the area of Bishop's Glen, west of Dunoon on the Cowal peninsula.

Visible on the Ordnance Survey map of 1924, the west range does not appear on later, or online, versions. The construction date of this range is unknown, but is assumed to date from around World War I since the earliest maps depicting its existence date from the 1920s. The east range is depicted on maps dating from 1899 to 1946.

West range

The range to the west is believed to have been in use at least until the late 1950s. The 49th edition of the Queen Victoria School [1] magazine refers to a camp at Ardhallow with local activities, "the use of the rifle range at Dunoon has been obtained".[2] Queen Victoria School is a co-educational boarding school in Dunblane, which caters for children of Scottish Service personnel, or of personnel who are serving or have served in Scotland.

Site visit

A site visit carried out during 2008 found the target area to be in poor condition, with the remains of the earth banking, four target lifters, and parts of the brick walls of the range hut still extant.

A small firing step was found about 10 yards southeast of the targets, presumably used as a pistol range. The remains of the rifle firing steps were found further down the hill, in an area which has remained relatively clear of undergrowth, but is becoming covered with scrub. The area surrounding the range is heavily forested, precluding the opportunity for an aerial view.

East range

The targets of the east range were situated around 55° 56' 49.1"N 4° 56' 39.3"W, and were associated with a flagpole to show a red flag when the range was in use. A firing position at 200 yards was situated around 55° 56' 54.6"N 4° 56' 39.3"W, with another at 400 yards around 55° 56' 59.2"N 4° 56' 40.4"W. The targets are believed to have been destroyed when a new forestry road was driven through the site in the 1960s, although this is still to be confirmed. The firing positions may survive although the 400 yard one is in the midst of dense forestation.


Target lifts from northeast, 2008, Fox
Target lifts from northeast
Target lifts, 2008, Fox
Target lifts
Pistol range step, 2008, Fox
Pistol range step

  • Lower Range Target 55 56 49.1N 4 56 39.3W 55.9469722 -4.9442500
  • 200yds firing position 55 56 54.6N 4 56 39.9W 55.9485000 -4.9444167
  • 400yds firing position 55 56 59.2N 4 56 40.4W 55.9497778 -4.9445556
  • Direction of fire North South


1 Queen Victoria School

2 The Victorian, No 50, 1958

External links

Aerial views


West range

East range


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