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DVD Memories of the Vale of Leven, Alexandria Part 3 1955-1975

 “Oh, where is the land that can boast aught so fair. As the Queen of Scotch lakes, ‘midst our pure mountain air? Tis not the Rhine Valley that any could even to the beautiful scenes of the Vale of Leven.” James Shanks


From our private film archives we are able to share with you this rare and unique look back into the places, events and scenes in and around The Vale of Leven, Bonhill, Renton and Balloch between the mid 1950’s and late 1970’s.

The 1950’s sees us arriving by steam train for example at Renton Station to revisit the “Roxy Picture House”, Tontine, Veterans and Renton Bowling Clubs, join Bonhill Pipe Band as they lead a parade through Renton to Renton Parish Church. Strathleven Industrial estates where Westclox, Burroughs and Wiseman’s are some of the key local employers. We witness later in this journey some of the subsequent redevelopment of Renton including the demolition and replacement of Renton Public School and the demolition of the Cordale housing estate. We continue our journey back in time visiting Bonhill’s then newly built “pre-Fab” houses, Dillichip Terrace and Bonhill Parish Church. Some of the local businesses we visit along the way may jog some happy memories, Biaji’s Fish and Chips, Busby Wood’s Cosy Corner and MacLeans the newsagent . Bank Street Alexandria still boasts The Strand and Hall Cinemas and we have the chance to catch sight of the steam train from Glasgow leaving the Vale station where its next stop is Jamestown and Jamestown Parish Church. Here catch the 137 Bus at Jamestown heading up Cook Road where we visit Haldane School and Haldane Community and Shopping Centre.

The late 1950’s see us at arriving by steam train at Drumkinnon Bay Balloch to catch a cruise on the Paddle Steamer “Maid of the Loch” where we climb aboard for our scenic sail to Balmaha, Rowerdennnan, Inversnaid and Tarbert where the large crowds await the Maid’s arrival to take them back to Balloch.

These are but a few samples of the nostalgic and precious memories and scenes from this unique account of part of the history of The Vale of Leven.

Whether you once lived or continue to live in or around “The Beautiful Valley” of The Vale of Leven, Alexandria you are sure to find something here to stir and rekindle fond and happy memories of the Vale of Leven as it was during this period in this rare archive and fascinating account of the local area.


Narrated by Mark Gray Running time 55mins