In November we were approached by the grandson of the former owner of the Glasgow ship breaking company of W. H. Arnott Young. Graced with the same name as his grandfather, W. Sloan Smith, he has unearthed an old company photo album which records some of the work undertaken by the company from the early 1940’s to the latter part of the 1950’s. Sloan also worked with the company in late 1970’s during summer holidays.
The album is a fascinating read. It catalogues the companies work at their main operational sites at Dalmuir and Troon, and a small yard at Port Bannatyne on the Isle of Bute. It’s clear work was readily available, especially in the years through WW2 and the decade following. Some large vessels met their fate here including the battleship HMS Queen Elizabeth, liners such as the Empress of France, freighters, naval ships and submarines all passed through the ship breaking process.
During this period, visits were obviously made to some of the many vessels wrecked off the west coast, most probably as potential work for the yard. Leafing through the album, some names from my old dive logs appear such as – Mobeka, Aska, Floristan and Rothesay Castle. They are all recorded with small collections of black & white photos. Others were later visited by Arnott Young to be dismantled in-situ such as the SS Colonial near Campbeltown and liberty ship Samuel Dexter on Barra.