Search This Blog

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Ailsa Craig

AILSA CRAIG, an island rock at the mouth of the Firth of Clyde.
You can see the brief outline of the Craig from as far away as Largs and as you drive through Ayrshire it changes shape and size , but its not until you arrive at Girvan that you really marvel at this lump of volcanic plug.

From Girvan the craig is only 10 miles offshore,and indeed Girvan has claimed it self to be the home of Ailsa Craig,at the moment a visitor centre is being built in Girvan were you will be able to watch the sea birds via cameras on the island itself.

In the summer of 1818, John Keats and a friend named Brown undertook a pedestrian tour through Scotland. They travelled along the Ayrshire coast from Ballantrae northwards, Ailsa Rock being constantly in their view.

At the King's Arms Inn in Girvan, Keats wrote his fine sonnet on Ailsa Craig.

Hearken, thou craggy ocean-pyramid!

Give answer from thy voice-the sea-fowls' screams!

When were thy shoulders mantled in huge streams?

When from the sun was thy broad forehead hid?

flow long is 't since the Mighty Power bid

Thee heave from airy sleep, from fathom dreams?

Sleep in the lap of thunder, or sunbeams,

Or when grey clouds are thy cold coverlid?

Thou answerest not, for thou art dead asleep!

Thy life is but two dead eternities-

The last in air, the former in the deep-

First with the whales, last in the eagle-skies,

Drowned wert thou till an earthquake made thee steep;

Another cannot wake thy giant size.

-John Keats.

As well as being famous for its puffins and other sea birds ,its probably more famous throughout the world for its rock, which is made into some of the best quality curling stones in the world. The stones are popularly known as "Ailsas" or "Ailsa Craigs."

MV Saturn

MV Saturn arriving at Gourock


A small tanker being manoeuvred into Rothsey Dock today.


Aasfjord today making her way up to Glasgow.


Aasfjord passing Rothsey dock.

Monday, 26 May 2008

Loch Shira

Loch Shira approaching Millport.

Loch Shira is the Largs to Millport ferry,a short crossing of ten minutes.

Sunday, 25 May 2008


Departing Greenock ocean terminal yesterday was Deutschland , as the name would suggest she is a German cruise ship,built in 1994 for Peter Deilmann Cruises.

The ship received a lot of indirect publicity in late July 2000 with the crash of the Concorde supersonic jet liner. All of the passengers on the ill-fated Concorde that crashed just outside Paris were on a Peter Deilmann charter on their way to New York. They had planned to embark on a cruise on the Deutschland.

These photographs are especially for the charming lady I met on Lyle Hill,who was on holiday from Wales.

Saturday, 24 May 2008


A small coaster sailing through Largs bay on her journey to Glasgow.

Ocean Light

Ocean light discharging her cargo of animal feed at Shieldhall .

Friday, 23 May 2008



Seabus is a small passenger only ferry which sails from Gourock to Kilcreggan and Helensburgh .
The ferry is popular with tourists in the summer months,Kilcreggan offers enjoyable walks and superb views of Loch Long and the Firth of Clyde.

The ferry is also a vital link for people who work for the Ministry of Defence at Coulport,without the ferry they would face an arduous journey round the Rosneath Peninsula.