Shandon Hydro Hotel and great kindness

Dear blog reader

This week’s blog post is a tribute to the great kindness of Dominic Skeet who this week sent me a duplex postcard book of views of and around the Shandon Hydropathic Hotel.

I shall share below each postcard in the album (only one postcard was actually sent, that showing the terrace) and then what I actually find most fascinating in the album, the tariff list for the Shandon Hydro Hotel. Having said that, I do enjoy seeing the rooms where the subjects of so many of my blog posts actually took place.

The front cover:

Front cover

The 1st lounge:

1st lounge

The 2nd lounge:

2nd lounge

Part of dining room:

Dining room

The fishing pond:

Fishing pond





The golf course:

Golf course



If you were to have stayed at the Shandon Hydro Hotel when this album was published, here’s what you would have been charged:


The inclusive terms are as follows:

April to September – from 18\- per day

October to March – from 15\- per day

And these terms include – bedroom, attendance, lights, breakfast, luncheon, afternoon tea, dinner – also the enjoyment of baths (private or swimming in baths department), putting green, tennis on covered or open-air hard courts, bowls, croquet, dancing in the hotel ballroom, concerts, entertainments.

Apart from the inclusive terms quoted above, the general tariff is as under –

Apartments – single bedroom 8/6 to 15/-, double 18/- to 26/-, sitting room per day 21/-

Breakfasts – plain 2/6, Table d’Hote 4/-

Luncheon – Table d’Hote 4/-

Teas – afternoon, in lounge 1/6

Dinners – Table d’Hote 7/6

Dinner and dance – 11/6

Meals in bedroom – extra per meal, 1/- per head

Visitors’ servants – 15/- per day, apartments and board

Garage – per week from 12/6 to 17/6; per day 2/- to 3/-; 2 hours or less, 1/-, motor cycles and side cars 2/- per day, private lock up per week £1\2\6; per day 3/6, washing cars 2/6 to 5/-, use of hose for washing cars 1/-.

Steamer sunk



On Friday night, about eight o’clock, the river steamers Duchess of Argyll and Emperor came into collision upon the Gairloch, by which both vessels sustained very serious damage, and are so disabled that some time must elapse before they are fit to resume their usual stations.

From what we have learnt of the catastrophe, it would appear that the Duchess left the Broomielaw at five o’clock on Friday afternoon, and had proceeded as far on her passage to the head of the Gairloch as Shandon, when she was run into, or came in violent contact with the steamer Emperor, by which the last-mentioned vessel was so much damaged that she sunk in deep water, and now lies a little way below Shandon toll-house completely covered with water almost up to the top of the funnel.

The Duchess, after the collision, seems not to have been so much disabled, as she had evidently been put about and run ashore. She lies close on the beach, but her stern quarter is also covered with water. It was quite dark when the accident took place, and it is said to have been caused by one of the vessels not exhibiting the usual signal lamps. The passengers of the Duchess, we believe, made their escape by means of the small boats attached to the vessel, and it is gratifying to be enabled to state that although the loss and damage to the property by this extraordinary collision are considerable , no person has been injured in the slightest.

In the meantime of course it is impossible to say who is to blame for the accident, but we doubt not a searching enquiry will be made into the whole facts of the case by the proper authorities.

Broomfield House part 2

Dear blog-reader

This blog post is related to last week’s blog post and details what happened to Broomfield House 20 years later.

I hope you find it interesting.





The Broomfield Convalescent Home for Mothers at Shandon has been presented to the Glasgow Royal Maternity and Women’s Hospital by Sir Harold Yarrow, and will be known in future as the Eda Yarrow Convalescent Home.

The late Lady Yarrow over 20 years ago became interested in the welfare of mothers and their babies and opened the Broomfield Convalescent Home. The home has been continuously in use since its inception, and has done inestimable good.

As Sir Harold Yarrow may, in his discretion, make use of the trust funds for any charitable object which he may select, he has offered to the Maternity Hospital Broomfield House and its grounds, together with the trust funds, which have a present market value of about £10,000.

The only provision made by Sir Harold Yarrow is that the home should in future be known as the Eda Yarrow Convalescent Home.

Lady Yarrow was closely associated with the maternity hospital as a director and member of the Ladies’ Committee for many years.

Broomfield Home


In the unavoidable absence of the Countess of Eglinton and Winton, Mrs M Pearce Campbell opened the new Broomfield Convalescent Home for mothers and infants at Shandon on Saturday afternoon. Mrs Harold E Yarrow received the guests and the ceremony was performed on the grounds.

The Home has been founded and will be endowed by Mr A F Yarrow, and presented to his daughter-in-law, Mrs Harold E Yarrow. It is for the treatment of recently confined women and their infants.

Situated upon the shores of the Gareloch, at Shandon, the Home commands a fine view of both the loch and hills beyond. The six acres of ground are beautifully laid out. Six mothers and infants are to accommodated, and each mother is to have a room to herself and child.

The Home will be under the care of Dr Robert Jardine who will have associated with him Dr Leonard Findlay, physician to the Glasgow Royal Hospital for Sick Children, and Dr Arthur D Downes, of Helensburgh, will be the visiting physician. Preference will be given to patients from the Glasgow Royal Maternity and Women’s Hospital and to the wives of the workmen of Messrs Yarrow, but other deserving patients will also be received. Miss Gow is the matron.

Dr Gourlay presided, and after prayer the Rev H Miller, of Shandon, Dr Jardine explained that he had received a letter from the Countess of Eglinton and Winton expressing her regret that owing to illness she was not able to be present. The Countess, however, stated that she expected to visit the Home on an early date, in the work of which she took a very great interest.

Mrs Pearce Campbell formally declared the home opened, and congratulated Mrs Yarrow upon the good work she was in a position to carry out. The Home would be of great benefit to the women in restoring them to health again.

Mr M Pearce Campbell moved a vote of thanks and also offered his congratulations to Mrs Yarrow and those associated with her in the work of the Home, which he felt certain would have a useful career.

Shandon Valuation Roll 1885

Dear blog reader

Welcome to the fourth part in a series, a list of the people, with house names where known, who were connected with Shandon in 1885.

In 1885 Shandon had 74 households, a huge increase from 1875 when Shandon had 32 households. The 1875 number was the exact same number as the 32 households in 1865 which had been a growth of 4 households from the 28 households in 1855.

Hopefully those of you with ancestors from Shandon will find this list useful.


John M Allan – Oakbank
George Archibald – Shandon Lodge
John Barr – Garemount
Henry Bell – Summerhill
Mrs John Bell – Summerhill
Henry Bell – Woodside Cottage
Christopher H Braid – Croy Lodge
William Lochore Brown – Linnburn
John Brown – Ardgare
Donald Cameron – Summerhill Lodge
Archibald Carsewell – Ardchapel Lodge
Archibald Crichton – Blairvaddick
John Ralston Cunningham – Broomfield
Daniel Currie
Joseph Davidson – Lagbine [Lagbuie?]
John Donaldson – West Lodge [West Shandon Lodge?]
James Donaldson – Woodside Cottage
Robert Finlay – Croy
William Forgie – Greenhill
John Gartshore – Linnburn Lodge
Henry Gibb – Letrualt
William Glen – Hillhead
Andrew Graham – Shandon
Archibald Graham – Croy
Mrs Hanagan – East Lodge
David Harrison – Broomfield
Mrs Fanny Chisholm Hartley – Letrualt
George Harvey – Hillhead
Andrew Charles Henderson – Shandon
Joseph Innes – Summerhill
Mrs Janet P Johnstone – Croy
Walter Keir – Ardgare
Duncan Keith – Hillhead
John James Kerr – Ardgare
John Kirkpatrick – Lagbirie [Lagbuie?]
Andrew J Kirkpatrick – Lagbirie [Lagbuie?]
John Kirkpatrick – Oakbank
Robert Lindsay – Shandon Bank
John MacCormack – Glenfenlan [Glenfeulan?]
Roderick MacDonald – Craigmore
Mrs MacDonald – Hillhead
Mrs MacDonald – Shore Ground
Alexander MacKellar – Linnburn
Duncan MacKinlay – Hillhead
Duncan MacKinlay – Woodbank
Duncan MacKinlay – Woodburn Cottage
James MacLean – East Lodge
Mrs MacLean
Walter MacLellan – Blairvaddick
Professor George H B MacLeod – Finnary [Fuinary?]
James MacRae – Blairvaddick
John Mauchan – Berriedale
John Miller – Finnary [Fuinary?]
Reverend High Miller – Manse
Archibald Noble – Broomfield
John Gibson Patrick – Greenhill
James Playfair – Broomfield
William Priestley – West Shandon
Francis Reid – Craigmore
James Reid – Berriedale
George Ruthven – Ardgare Lodge
John Shearer
Daniel Sinclair -Linnburn
Miss Small – shop
Hugh Snodgrass – Balornock
Professor William Swan – Ardchapel
Miss Joanna T Taylor – Stuckenduff
Hugh Thomas – Garemount
Thomas Thomson – Woodbank
Thomas Vallance – Balornock
Robert Vallance – Ardgare
William James Walker – Woodburn
Mrs Jane Walker – Garemount
John Watt – West Lodge

Missing POW



The occupant of a lower bunk in a two-tier bed at an Italian POW camp at Blairvaddich, Shandon, Dumbartonshire, was wakened early yesterday morning by the sound of gurgling coming from the bunk above.

Blood began to trickle down on top of him and when he got up to see what was wrong he found the man in the top bunk with his throat cut. The man was unconscious and died very soon afterwards.

A blood-stained clasp knife was found near the bed.

It was later discovered that one of the occupants of the hut was missing, and late last night he had not been found.

Character of a Shandon Minister


The Rev Neil Brodie, of Pollokshaws Free Church, who died the other day, was succeeded in Shandon Free Church by three or four ministers who all held the fort for very short periods.

Mr Brodie’s immediate successor was of an extremely irritable temperament, and immediately after his settlement he began to quarrel with his elders. One of these gentlemen owned a large estate in the latitude in which arrowroot is grown, and thinking that a small barrel of the season’s first fruits might mollify the minister and be accepted by him as a peace offering, an olive branch, or any other symbol of amity, he straightway put his deign into execution.

The minister, spying the elder approaching, answered the door himself. On being politely and modestly requested to accept the gift, he gruffly bade the elder to put his offerings in the church plate, and, turning on his heel, slammed the door in the good man’s face.

Fatal accident at Shandon


On the evening of New Year’s Day, Alexander Davidson, gardener with George Martin, Esq., Greenhill, was drowned by the upsetting of the ferry-boat.

Davidson, who was not only a total abstainer, but a thoroughly consistent Christian man, attended the prayer meeting in Shandon Free Church in New Year’s Day, and afterwards the meeting of the Sabbath and week-day school children, and at six o’clock went to the ferry to meet a sister-in-law, who was expected by the steamer. He went out in the boat along with the ferryman, when (whether through the fault of the ferryman, or those in the steamer Gem, or both, remains to be cleared up) the ferry-boat came into contact with the steamer’s paddles, and was upset.

MacKinlay, the ferryman, rose to the surface and was saved, but Davidson never appeared above water. On Sabbath the body was recovered. The death of Alexander Davidson is a loss not only to his widow and child, but to the whole Shandon district. An intelligent, active and energetic man, he was ready to every good word and work; he was a devoted Sabbath-school teacher, and took an active part in the Mutual Improvement Society. During the time he has been at Shandon he has earned the esteem of poor and rich.

William Priestley leaves Shandon Hydro



Mr William Priestley, who has just been appointed to the post of manager of the Waverley Hydropathic Establishment, was recently presented with a pair of gold eye-glasses and a purse of forty sovereigns, on the occasion of him leaving the Shandon Hydropathic Establishment.

The Rev. Hugh Miller, of Shandon Free Church, who presided at the presentation, testified to the readiness with which Mr Priestley had given his services in times of sickness, and also to his good work in connection with the Free Church, especially in the young men’s association, of which he had been an office-bearer from the beginning.

He had also been associated from its start with the penny savings bank, and it was largely due to his attention and enthusiasm that it has been such a marked success.

Shandon Hydro Amateur Games



On Saturday the usually quiet village of Shandon, on the Gareloch, was the scene of some excitement, resulting in from the occurrence of the amateur games and aquatic sports in connection with the Shandon Hydropathic Establishment. The land sports were conducted in a field within the grounds north of the establishment, and the aquatic sports in the Gareloch below. These events brought together a large number of ladies and gentlemen from the surrounding district, and what with the residents of the Hydropathic Establishment, numbering over 200 at present, and the resident population, the games were very largely attended. The directors of the establishment had kindly arranged that the extensive grounds would be thrown open to visitors, which was largely taken advantage of.

A grand stand was erected in the field, draped with crimson, and among the occupants were:- Mrs Dennistoun of Golfhill and party, Mrs C Jones Parry of Row and party, Mrs Morrison, Ashcraig and party; Mrs Wm Orr Ewing, Rhu Lodge, and party; Mrs Wm Clark, Golfhill, and party; Mrs Couper, Dalmore, and party.

The day’s amusement commenced with the land sports, and, as the weather was favourable, passed off without a hitch. On no previous occasion was the number of visitors at the establishment so large, and the management of Mr Stockdale was thoroughly satisfactory. The judges were:- Lawn tennis – James Muir, Glasgow, and F L Morrison, Glasgow. Field sports – F L Morrison and A Donaldson, Edinburgh, Croquet – Mr Child, London. Bowling – A Morrison, Glasgow. Aquatics – Mr Priestly, of the establishment, starter; and Mr A Donaldson, judge.

The prizes were awarded as follows:-

Croquet (open to the establishment) – Ladies’ prize, Miss Forrest, Dublin; girls’ prize, Miss Muir, Glasgow; boys’ prize, Master Boswell Donaldson, Edinburgh.

Bowling (open to the establishment) – 1st, Mr McLean, gardener, Shandon; 2nd, Mr Mollison, Glasgow.

Flat race, 100 yards, boys under 15 (open to Helensburgh and the Gareloch) – 1st, Donald Donaldson; 2nd, Stanley Priestley and P W Torrance, equal. Flat race, quarter mile (open to Helensburgh and the Gareloch) – 1st, Wm McKinlay, Helensburgh; 2nd, T Vallance, Shandon. Flat race – 100 yards – boys under 15 (open to the establishment) – 1st, Dugid Milne, Aberdeen; 2nd, Stanley Priestly. Sack race (open to the establishment) – 1st, J Blair, Shandon, 2nd, B Donaldson, Edinburgh. Flat race – half-mile (open to Helensburgh and the Gareloch) – 1st, W McKinlay, 2nd, J Johnston. Wheelbarrow race (open to the establishment) – 1st, J Sloan, 2nd, J Dempster. Hop, step and jump (open to Helensburgh and the Gareloch) – W McKinlay. Pitcher race (open to the establishment) – George McKenzie. Ladies’ race (open to Helensburgh and the Gareloch) – Miss Helen Allan. Trousers race (open to the establishment) – G McKenzie and A Porter. Tug-of -war (open to the establishment) – House v Gardeners – Gardeners won. Band race – quarter-mile – senior – 1st, Daniel McPherson, 2nd, Samuel Smith. Junior – 1st, Wm Cox, 2nd, Alfred George Carter. Girls’ race (confined to the establishment) – 1st Annie Eadie, 2nd, Grace Muir. Boys’ race (confined to the establishment) – 1st H Brand, 2nd G Muir.

Four-oared jollyboat race (open to the Gareloch) – 1st, Helensburgh crew – Wm McKinlay, Wm Ireland, David McCall, 2nd, Row – Peter Farquhar, Donald McLeod, Angus McLeod, Robert Rodger. Two-oared jollyboat race for ladies (open to the establishment) – The Misses Horsburgh, Edinburgh. Jollyboat race (open to the Cumberland boys) – Crew of No 4 gig. Punt race – 1st, J Ingram, 2nd, McKellar. Swimming – boys’ race (open to Helensburgh and the Gareloch) – 1st, Stanley Priestly, Shandon, 2nd, J Elborn, Shandon. Swimming handicap, 100 yards (open to Helensburgh and the Gareloch) – 1st, A McKinlay, Helensburgh, 2nd, W Dick. Duck hunt – After an exciting chase the duck was caught.

At the close Mrs Dennistoun presented the prizes to the successful competitors in front of the establishment, where a temporary platform was erected. The Chairman of the Board of Directors (Bailie Morrison, of Glasgow) proposed a vote of thanks to Mrs Dennistoun, which was heartily given. Three cheers were also called for Mr Gardiner, the chairman of the Sports Committee, which was warmly accorded, and the large party afterwards dispersed.