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Cardross, Argyll

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Cardross (Scottish Gaelic: Càrdainn Ros) is a large village with a population of 2,193 (2011) in Scotland, on the north side of the Firth of Clyde, situated halfway between Dumbarton and Helensburgh. Cardross is in the historic geographical county of Dunbartonshire but the modern political local authority of Argyll and Bute. Cardross is also the name of an historic parish where King Robert the Bruce once lived. The Parish area stretched from the west side of Dumbarton to Camus Eskan (near Helensburgh) and even as far as Loch Long and also included the village of Renton in the Vale of Leven.


Map of Cardross, Dumbarton, UK


The settlement of Cardross developed around a 17th century church. Today no remains of the original church can be found but the Graveyard is still in use and contains several 17th century gravestones.

Robert the Bruce purchased the portions of lands of Pillanflatt from the Earl of Lennox, lying in the parish of Cardross in 1326. In 1329, he died at his manorial house that he built there. A field called the Mains of Cardross is thought to have been the location of his royal manor, none of which remains today.

Natural History

2 km north-west of Cardross is a peninsula called Ardmore Point. This privately owned area of land has a nature trail and is considered a Regionally Important Geographical Site (RIGS) due to unique rock formations including an exposed sea cliff. It is a popular fishing and bird-spotting area and grey seals can also be seen here.


There are a number of shops, including a post office, newsagents, pharmacy, plumber's merchant and a restaurant. Ardardan Estate is a working farm with a farm shop, plant nursery and tea room and is situated just outside Cardross near Ardmore Point.


The town possesses a golf course, bowling, tennis and football clubs. Paul Lawrie won the Scottish Professional Golf Championship which was held at Cardross Golf Course in 1992.


Cardross has its own pre-school and primary school.


Cardross railway station has direct links to both Glasgow Queen Street and Edinburgh Waverley stations on the North Clyde Line; the station is operated by Abellio ScotRail.

A bus service is provided by First Glasgow.

Tourist attractions

Geilston Garden, a National Trust for Scotland property, is located to the north west of the village. There is also a ruined church, which was bombed in May 1942 during World War 2. The reason for Cardross being targeted by German bombers remains unclear, locals have speculated buildings in the village might have been mistaken as a shipyard or an oil storage facility.


The village has two places of worship: Cardross Parish Church (Church of Scotland) and a Roman Catholic Church dedicated to Saint Mahew. The original parish church was bombed during the Second World War and its ruins are located next to the former Church of Scotland manse.

Listed Buildings/Structures

There are nearly fifty listed buildings/structures in Cardross, two of which are category A.

Some structures of note:

  • The 14th century St. Mahew's Chapel. Most recently restored in the 1950s as a Catholic church which remains in use.
  • The former St. Peter's Seminary, designed by Gillespie, Kidd & Coia, is situated to the north of the village; it is closed to the public. Abandoned in the late 1980s, it is in a state of dilapidation, particularly internally. In early 2015 the site was handed over to artist Angus Farquhar, with the intention that part of it will become an arts venue.
  • The ruined 15th-century Kilmahew Castle that was built by the Napier Clan is situated just north of the village.
  • The main road through the village goes over Moore's Bridge(1688).
  • Famous residents

  • A. J. Cronin, the celebrated doctor and writer, was born in Cardross in 1896.
  • The BBC sports presenter Hazel Irvine lived in Cardross and attended Hermitage Academy in nearby Helensburgh.
  • Rev Adam Mitchell Hunter was minister of the parish church from 1897 to 1922.
  • References

    Cardross, Argyll Wikipedia

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