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Historical Notes on Glenfinart
Forestry Memories
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No: 4272   Contributor: Norman Davidson   Year: 1955
Historical Notes on Glenfinart

The document is courtesy of Glenbranter Forest office staff with particular thanks to Ian Adams who has stored these old files for many years.

This is an incomplete history of Glenfinart Forest and is in fact more of history of Glenfinart Estate possibly written up around the late 1950s by an unknown author. The narrative runs quickly over the early owners the Earls of Dunsmore and the breakup of the once very extensive estate. There are notes on roads, rivers, ferries and farms within the forest. The latter named as Craighoyle Farm, Ardnahein Farm, Ardentinny Farm and Baranachaber Farm.

The past timber production and harvesting systems in the woodlands dating back to 1800-1862 gets a mention with a reference to clog sole making, faggots for steel smelting, bark for tanning and much of the timber handled by a merchant named Stalker based in Drynain. In later years wood merchant names that crop up are Halliday, Methven, Wilson of Troon and Murray of Larbert all having sawmills in the woods.

In the building section it states the destruction or ruin of most of the former building and even of the mansion house. There is however mention of a Ministry of Labour camp being erected in the 1930s on an areas known locally as the Grotto at the west end of Finart Bay. This served as the shore based HMS Armadillo in WWII and afterwards passed to the Forestry Commission and was used as a base for a Forest Worker training scheme. Some of it was dismantled thereafter but three huts were converted into 6 temporary worker dwellings and one hut used as a Children’s club.

See attached PDF for full details.
Picture added on 09 October 2018 at 20:34
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