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                        Memories Of The Arrochar Youth Club 1945 -1952  > 


 by Arthur Ross

During the Second World War the Royal Navy were billeted in the Ross Hotel. They erected nissen huts on what is now known as the car park, some of these huts were used for recreation purposes. One hut was used as a picture house and was open to the local people. The youth of the village made good use of it. At the end of hostelries the Navy were withdrawn from Arrochar and the Hotel returned to its owners. This left the youth of the village with nowhere to meet.


Mr Hutton, a supervisor based at the Torpedo Range, and Davy Leishman, seeing this situation, started a Youth Club which was very well attended by the young.


Originally the meeting place was the Church Hall but ‘not everyone’ was made welcome, so Mr Hutton, with thanks to Mrs. Henry of Glenloin, moved it to the Oratory which was situated at the rear of Glenloin House.


Arrochar Youth Club in front of Glen Loin House

Billy Dawson, Alistair Bell, Gus Campbell, ? ,Tommy (Midge) Campbell
Nancy Campbell, Hester Hutton, Erin McDonald.
On the front lawn at Glenloin House.


Good use was made of these premises with sing songs, games, also the odd game of cards, playing for matches. There was also a cross-country race with the winner being rewarded with a cup. Kenny Bell had made this cup in the Torpedo Range from brass parts recovered from old torpedoes. The names of the winners were engraved on the cup, the last known winner being Jim Bishard. No knowledge of the cup still being in existence is known. (If you know where it is please call or EMAIL us!)


The photo to the right was taken at the back door of the church of the boys waiting to start the Cross Country Race.

L-R Back Row
Gus Campbell, Arthur Ross, Jim Bichard.

L-R Front Row
Peter McCall, Sandy Rhind, Donnie Nicolson, Archie Campbell, Billy McRae, John Grieve.

Arrochar Youth Club at the Arrochar Church back door


As time passed the club, which had grown in size, required larger premises, the Wee School at Tighness was available having been made redundant in 1947 when transport was made available to take the younger children from Arrochar to the school in Tarbet.

The Wee School building proved to be ideal premises with plenty of room to set up games tables and have the wee dance to Davy Leishman on the accordion. The heating for the building was provided by a stove…………the fuel came by the courtesy of Gus Campbell, Sandy Rhind and Tom Hamilton gathering the coal from the railway line that had fallen off the steam engines on to the side of the railway tracts. This was ideal for the winter months. The stove was also used for making tablet, the cooking pot and all ingredients being supplied by Mr. Hutton. Everyone got a turn at stirring the pot, but when the tablet was set and ready for consumption it went ‘like snow off a dyke’.

As mentioned previously Davy Leishman was a good accordion player and he tried to encourage some of the boys to form a band. My brother Alistair also played the accordion and someone produced a set of drums, however sadly nothing actually came of this.

Arrochar Youth Club Outing


Coach trips were organised by Mr. Hutton (by now he was affectionately known as Daddy Hutton) to various places in the summer months. The coaches were hired from the local garage owners Jimmy and Alex Cameron, whose garage was next to the old toilets now the site of the Pit Stop Restaurant.

Places such as Butlin's in Ayr, Melrose Abby, Ayr Race Course and North Berwick were some of the places visited while I was a youth club member.

The Youth continued to grow and eventually moved to the Village Hall where there was a badminton court. Thich developed the competitive skills with every one being very keen to win or become better at the game.






Arthur Ross, Tommy Lindsey, Robin Scott, on one of the Youth Club outings.


Arrochar Youth Club Cycling Outing

Cycle tour round Scotland. First day out. Sandy Rhind, Arthur Ross, Archie Campbell, Alistair Ross




Arrochar Youth Club Cycling Outing

Cycle tour somewhere between Aberdeen & Arbroath. Alistair Ross, Arthur Ross, Archie Campbell, Sandy Rhind.



Dances were run to raise funds for the club, at which local men provided the music on their accordions, fiddles and the piano.

The kitchen in the hall would be put to good use as half way through the dance tea and sandwiches would be handed out all courtesy of the women of the village.

Daddy Hutton moved away from the area in the mid fifties maybe unaware of the valuable service he had provided for the youth of Arrochar & Tarbet. To this day some of the older residents talk of their evenings at the Youth Club run by Daddy Hutton. 


 Photo opposite,

Billy Dawson and Midge Campbell taken in the field in front of the Village Hall

Arrochar Youth Club by the old Village Hall







Below is a photo of the whole ‘gang’ with Daddy Hutton on one of their many trips. If anyone can identify the people in the photo please let the Heritage Group know. Click here to EMAIL US.

Arrochar Youth Club and Daddy Hutton

Arrochar & Tarbet Youth Club Outing.

Will 'Daddy' Hutton and May Hutton

Will and May Hutton


In the 1940's there was an annual run organised by the youth club. The last time this was held was 1947. A cup that was presented to the winner annually. Recently the winner of the 1947 run contacted the heritage group. He still has in his possession the very cup that was presented to him in 1947. He has offered to return the cup to the village. We are pleased to announce that we are hoping to resurrect the Cross Country Running Cup once again in 2016. Plans are underway to organise the event and the current holder and winner from 1947 has offered to come up to Arrochar and present the cup to the winner. The provisional date for this event is Saturday 4th June 2016. It will be organised as a fun community event hopefully involving many of the local groups from the area.

If you are interested in taking part, marshalling or sponsoring the event please contact Dawn Gourlay -

Watch this space for further details!