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The Invergordon Archive

Invergordon Harbour
The Invergordon Archive
Invergordon Harbour

A scene at the Harbour. In the foreground, whelk fishermen from Avoch tying up sacks on Invergordon Quay.
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Picture added on 12 May 2004
This picture must be dated a lot later than 1900. picture #179 shows the harbour area in a different perspective, the shop shown at the bottom of King Street is where Rhinds Store was and Bernards of Harwich is also visible to a high degree. I remember them both well and I would date this picture as mid to late '50s.
Added by Duncan Murray on 17 October 2009
Hi Duncan, I remember Bernards shop and the shops in front of the houses in the picture but they were empty in my memory. When was Rhinds there, I always remember it on Bank Street?
Added by Liz Taylor nee Askew on 21 October 2009
Yes Liz, this is where Rhinds Shop was before they moved to Bank Street. Can't be sure of the date but I'd guess around 1952 sort of time. Later a boat builder used that building as a workshop - his name was George ? and was related to the Macgreggors who turned the YMCA into the "Grange". His brother-in-law also had Joe Angelo's Garage in Ross Street for a time.
Added by Duncan Murray on 22 October 2009
Thanks Duncan, didn't know that. The boatbuilder was Thompson and his brother-in-law was Rob Roy Macgregor. I think he went to Australia.
Added by Liz Taylor nee Askew on 23 October 2009
The doorway on the extreme left was the entrance to MacBean and Bensons Offices - they dealt with coal and building material before being taken over by MacGruther and Marshall. The doorway can still be seen today "blocked up" but visible and is part of J.P. Knight's Shipping Office.
Added by Duncan Murray on 06 November 2009
The picture of the "Basin" dates from 1920 or earlier. The boats have dipping-lug rig which were gradually phased out around that time when the boats were fitted with engines, largely Kelvin "Poppets".
The building on the left was the office of the coal merchants, Bremner, Rose and Benson, which later became McBean and Benson, then MacGruther and Marshall. Sam Rose, one of the partners of the firm, lived in "Auldfern" on the High Street and was a worthy citizen of the town. He died in 1954.
David Ross (Davy Coon) lived for a time on the top floor of this building, access to which was via an external wooden stair.
Round the corner from Bernard's was another naval outfitter, Gieves of London. These firms were presumably attracted to the town around time of the 1914-18 war, as Invergordon was then a major naval base. After the 1939-45 war, these shops opened only when the fleet was in port and became very dilapidated, before eventually closing down.
In the 1940s the piers were called, the "RAF" pier, the "Middle" pier and the "Dockyard" pier. The RAF tenders and rescue craft for the Sunderland Fleet were kept in the basin. The shed on the RAF pier housed various stores pertaining to the aircraft. One door was marked "Ablutions" which puzzled me for some time. There were facilities for servicing and repairing the small "boats" which carried the lights for the flare path for the Sunderlands. These were beautifully made of varnished wood and were fitted with banks of batteries to power the lights. There was a railway which ran from the station sidings beside the slaughter house, across the West end of the High Street, and along Shore Road to the dockyard, with a branch going on to the middle pier. An ancient steam crane could be seen there in the 1940s.
Added by Gordon Legge on 07 November 2009
Hi Gordon, a lot of interesting information there. Was Sam Rose the father of Vina and grandfather of Jimmy Dinwoodie?
Added by Liz Taylor nee Askew on 07 November 2009
Yes Gordon, agree with the date of picture, I don't recall any whelk boats in the '50s. I was going to say '30-'40s. The large version (thanks Malcolm) shows vehicles of that vintage in King Street.
Added by Harry O'Neill on 07 November 2009
Sorry, Liz, I have no information on Sam Rose's family, other than that he had a son, Samuel, who died at the age of 48 in 1962.
Added by Gordon Legge on 08 November 2009
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