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Cardwell Bay

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Pier remains, 2007
Pier remains 2007

Cardwell Bay lies within the larger Gourock Bay in Inverclyde, next to Battery Park in West Greenock, approximately half a mile south east of Gourock.

Admiralty pier

Shore patrol hut, 2008
Shore patrol hut
© Zak

The derelict L-shaped pier in Cardwell Bay does not appear on maps produced prior to World War II, indicating that it was purpose built by the Admiralty to service warships at anchor in the Firth of Clyde. After the war, it was used as an overnight mooring place for Admiralty boats, and as a terminal for liberty boats from the US submarine base in the Holy Loch. A concrete building on the west corner of the pier served as the station for the Gourock section of the USN shore patrol, responsible for ensuring those on liberty did not become too rowdy. Adjacent to the station, a line of bus-type shelters ran along the pier, protecting the sailors from the Scottish weather while they waited to return to their base. The metal frame of one shelter still stands to the east of the shore patrol building, and can be seen in the photographs. A wooden hut, painted grey, stood on the concrete jetty leading to the pier, and was the office of the MoD police responsible for pier security, and can be seen in the photographs.

Disappearing L-section

The bay, 2006
The pier in 2006
© Richard Webb
Attach:Cardwell Pier, 1956, Fox
Pier as seen in 1956

The L-section appears to have been lost from the pier at some time prior to this image being recorded in 1956, and having been restored in the 1960s, when the pier was re-used as a terminal for the submarine base. The picture shows the only the straight section of the pier, emerging into the from the jetty.

Abandoned by the Admiralty in the late 1980s, the absence of any care and maintenance has seen the pier has fall into serious disrepair, with the link section to the jetty becoming little more than a line of posts in the water.

Taggart connection

The slipway to the east of the jetty was used as the boatyard in an episode of Taggart titled "Falling in Love", which first aired on Wednesday, January 10, 2001. The pier features in the background of many of the scenes shot at the fictional Keel Club, a project aimed at keeping teenagers out of trouble by allowing them to work on boats and engines, rather than turning to crime for amusement. The Shore Patrol building and shelter frame can be seen, as can the decaying pier link. While most of the wooden piles were still visible, no decking remained on the link.


Decaying pier link
Decaying pier link
Cardwell Bay jetty
Cardwell Bay jetty
Pier remains at low tide, 2010, Fox
Pier remains at low tide
Bay and pier beneath Lyle Hill, 2011, Fox
Bay and pier beneath Lyle Hill
Brodick and Empire Ada, 1967, Fox
Brodick and Empire Ada 1967

External links

Aerial views



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