THE TIGHNABRUAICH PIER ASSOCIATION IN 2010
Once again it is hoped that certain building works will be done this year on the Pier and that there will not be the frustrations arising from unrealised expectations.
Local Authorities are almost universally aiming to balance budgets with quite limited resources and Argyll and Bute Council, owner of the pier’s structure, is certainly in that category. Steps have now been taken, (we believe successfully), to eradicate the damp penetrating the entrance hall and side rooms which hitherto has prevented any extension of the Pier Association’s activities. The waiting room is being restored and should be open in time for PS ‘Waverleys’ first visit on 26th June, 2010.
Perhaps of even greater significance is the durability of the pier head which has to sustain the twice weekly impact of the Waverley berthing during her ten week summer season. When the pier was rebuilt in the 1870s, it was, as the Council puts it, ’over engineered’, using very heavy timbers, some of Greenheart, and these have enabled it to stand up to regular calls by many steamers, also annual abuse from fierce winter storms. Despite that some rather alarming movement of the south easterly corner of the pier head was spotted last summer by the Chairman of Waverley Excursions and it is hoped that the Council will place a contract to execute such work as is necessary.
Meanwhile, the Pier Association will oversee a summer programme of activities similar to 2009. The annual Gala Day will be held on Saturday, 3rd July, supported by local businesses supplemented by others from elsewhere. Traders’ stalls, which were well attended last year, will be open from about 1-00 pm and as soon as steamer passengers have disembarked there will again be a Short Cruise by PS ‘Waverley’, commencing at about 2.30pm and taking overall not more than an hour. This is a great opportunity to sight-see, to savour the particular summer pleasures of a traditional Clyde steamer and to support the Pier Association – all for the very modest fare of £7-00! Under 18 £3-00. Primary school children free of charge. Customary notices will appear throughout the village in due course.
In addition, Pier Association merchandise will be offered for sale on Saturday afternoons when the ‘Waverley’ calls. An interesting innovation this summer is a DVD running in the Heritage Room showing, (courtesy of The National Film Archive), footage relating to old Clyde steamers etc. There is also a new permanent display board showing some of the wildlife to be seen in our waters.
And then, of course, the Pier will be the venue for the
RNLI MINI-MARKET on 24TH July, 2010
an established fund-raising event held every Summer in Tighnabruaich. The format will again be similar to previous years with many stalls open from mid morning and in the early afternoon the ever-popular Raft Race will again be held from the RNLI Station to the Pier. The Chairman of the RNLI Fund Raising Branch is Mrs G Willoughby, Woodend Cottage, Kames, PA21 2AF, (01700 811 597) and the Secretary is David Pirie, 7, Kyles of Bute Lodges, Kames, Argyll, PA21 2AB, (01700 811095).
Other TPA news
Since the Pier Association is a Company Limited by Guarantee it is registered with Companies House and has, of course, to comply with laws relating to all such Companies. Statutory notice is given in the Autumn of the AGM which is normally held in November.
Some years ago the water supply to the pier was restored and despite gloomy assertions that the installation would either be damaged by winter weather or ripped out by vandals neither has yet happened(!) and various yachtsmen have appreciated the use of the tap and hose which has now been lengthened by one satisfied boat owner.
Until further rooms become available, depending on the progress of building works, the former Pier Master’s Office remains as testimony to the Pier Association’s efforts and it was gratifying to see how many tourists and Waverley passengers appreciated last year the permanent exhibition collection of views of Old Tighnabruaich.