Arran Banner 20 years ago – week 05

Elizabeth Faulkner replying on behalf of the lassies at Shiskine Hall Burns Supper.

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Saturday February 5, 2000

Arran beer

Arran first ever brewery is about to produce its first beer. It was in August last year the Banner first reported on this new venture being undertaken by Richard and Elizabeth Roberts at Cladach. Originally from High Wycome in Buckinghamshire, Richard had been a sculptor and Elizabeth a social worker, but they had decided six years ago, during a holiday here, that what Arran really needed was a brewery.


At 11am on Wednesday morning the first bags of malted barley were tipped into the mash tun and mixed with hot water. This was it; the beginning of the first Arran pint. There was no fanfare, just a clear sense of relief from Richard his project was finally underway.

There will be three beers, Arran Ale, Arran Dark and Arran Blonde which are still brewing, but the Banner has been involved back for the first tasting in a couple of weeks. That could be an assignment that requires more than one member of staff!

Master plan

A master plan for Market Road in Brodick has been prepared by North Ayrshire Council. The need is due to the very poor condition of the road, the incremental development which has been taking place there, and the slummy appearance of the area – which is also the first thing people arrive on the ferry actually see.


The intention is to set up an environmental improvement trust to implement the plan. The trust would gather funds from agencies and from private landowners and, over a period of time, use them to make improvements.

These are envisaged to be a good quality road, a site for sewage treatment works, quality areas for business users, better boundaries and landscaping of the whole area.

New terminal

Work on a new ferry terminal at Ardrossan will begin in about two months time and should be completed by the end of the summer. This will give passengers a more comfortable waiting area, covered access to the ferry, plus all the facilities normally now expected, like baby changing areas and a coffee bar.

Arran plays host to more and more Burns Suppers throughout January and February. Here we see Elizabeth Faulkner replying on behalf of the lassies at Shiskine Hall and Bill McLaughlin addressing the haggis at Lochranza distillery. 01_B05twe01 and 01_B05twe02

Richard Roberts outside his new brewery holding bottles which will soon contain his Arran Ale and Arran Blonde. 01_B05twe03

Youth rugby is alive and well on Arran despite the senior team being moribund for the time being and this week David McClelland of Balmichael Visitor Centre (far left) presented the Arran mini and midi rugby section a cheque to go towards buying new equipment. 01_B05twe04

Major engineering works are ongoing at the Iron Bride on the Ross Road, which is closed to traffic at the moment. The burn itself has been re-routed and these enormous pipes are being placed in the original course of the burn. It seems likely that the roue will have a slightly different route from previously, when it reopens. 01_B05twe05