Saltcoats are two Towns next to
each other in Ayrshire, southwest
Scotland. The Town of Stevenston on the
south side has now merged as well,
referred to as The Three Towns.
The Towns are popular for the Beaches
and Ferries to the
Isle of Arran . Map
The image top is of Ardrossan Harbour
from the Arran Ferry showing it has been
recently redeveloped with modern
There is a large Car Park at the
Harbour for day trippers to Arran. The
run from about 07.00 to 19.00, taking
about 55 minutes. Prices are about £8 per
passenger, £33 per car per return. About
700,000 passengers use these Ferries each
The third image is of Arran Place on
the road south of Ardrossan Harbour,
leading to the beach. The Church here is
the Barony St. John’s Church, now used as
an Education Centre. This is a nice walk
or drive alongside the shore front for
about one and a half miles.
The fourth image is of Ardrossan
Castle from the beach area. The modern
Church here is the Saint Peter
in Chains completed in 1937.
The first Castle was built on that
spot in the 1100s. It was severely
damaged during the Wars of Scottish
Ardrossan Promenade and Beach Park is
by the Ardrossan South Beach.
Ardrossan South Beach is a popular
large Beach on warm days. This is the
area where Ardrossan and Saltcoats merge.
The Beach is often referred to as
The image below is of the Apollo
Leisure Centre at Saltcoats shore front.
There is a cinema, indoor kids play, bar
diner / restaurant and an outdoor kids
Saltcoats main street for Shopping is
named Dockhead Street, the main shopping
area in The Three Towns.
Saltcoats Railway Station is next to
Dockhead Street, with links to Saltcoats,
Ardossan and Glasgow Central Train
The Church along from the Railway
Station is the Kirkgate Parish
Church, with the North Ayrshire
Heritage Centre situated just behind the
The North Ayrshire Heritage Centre is
in the former Parish Church of Saltcoats,
built in 1776.
The bottom image is of the interior of
the Heritage Centre. The collection has a
Stone Sarcophagus, said to be one of the
finest examples from the Scottish
medieval period. The Museum also covers
archaeology, social, domestic, military
and natural history. The Centre provides
resources for local and family history
Ardrossan is thought to have been
built around the first Castle built on
Castle Hill, by the present day harbour
for Simon de Morville.
The first Castle is thought to have
been built in the early 1100s. Ardrossan
Castle was enlarged over the following
centuries, with the most work carried out
The Castle fell into disrepair in the
late 1500s, then was looted for its stone
by Cromwell's army in 1654, with them
using the stone to help built their vast
Citadel at Ayr.
The town of Saltcoats on the south
side of Ardrossan grew from the 1200s
through Coal Mining, and using the coal
to evaporate seawater to produce
The Port at Ardrossan was built up
during the 1700s and 1800s exporting Coal
and Pig Iron to Europe and North
The main structure of the Harbour was
completed to what can be seen today in
1864. Hugh, Earl of Eglinton had began
the extensive work in 1806.
Ardrossan has three Train Stations,
with the first opened in 1831, linking
the town to Glasgow. One is at the
Harbour, one in the Town centre close to
the Harbour, and the main Station is
about one mile south of the Harbour named
Ardrossan South Beach.
Ferries between Ardrossan and Brodick
on the Isle of Arran began in 1834. A
service to Belfast in Northern Ireland
began in 1884, and a service to the Isle
of Man in 1892.
Ardrossan had a number of Shipbuilders
with the first opening in the 1840s, with
the last closing in the 1990s. The
Shipyards built fishing boats and small
The Belfast and Isle of Man ferry
services stopped in the 1970s.
The Clyde Marina was
built at Ardrossan Harbour around 1997,
with many Apartments built around the
A Ferry service between Ardrossan and
Cambpeltown on the Mull of Kintyre began