DUMBARTON HARBOUR HOUSING, Dumbarton
ACCESS : Easy access on foot from Dumbarton High Street near Riverside Parish Church or the Riverside Walk. (No vehicles except for residents).
https://w3w.co/drum.wants.nurse from High Street.
https://w3w.co/driver.heats.bridge From the Riverside Walk.
Including a piece on a modern housing project is somewhat different to the other features on this website, but this deserves some attenton. The site is part of a larger swathe of land that stood rather desolate for many years, but has strong connotations of the history and identity of Dumbarton.
While the site may have been almost empty during this preceding period, it remained dominated by the tall brick tower of the distillery. See index.asp?pageid=715663 for more details. And before that it was the epicentre of shipbuilding. See index.asp?pageid=716273. These two past features have left their legacy on this residential area. Add to that the role that this location had and has under the watchful eye of Dumbarton Castle, alongside the River Leven and right up against the Toen Centre. It has always been integral within Dumbarton itself.
All this is reflected in the brickwork, the artwork and its contribution to the Dumbarton Waterfront Path. See index.asp?pageid=715736 To this end the developers have emphasised its sinificance through road names such as to the author A.J. Cronin. See index.asp?pageid=716392 One should not be surprised to see a Hatter's Lane here. Castle. Housing. Trades no longer viable here. The river. Get it?
The housing association who have redeveloped this site, Dunbritton Housing Association, have erected a monument facing Dumbarton Castle that immediately emphasises the interconnectiveness. As DHA said at the time, The development looks to address the growing need for affordable housing within the town, whilst looking to link in with the culture and heritage of the location. With funding from the National Heritage lottery, DHA is currently working closely with Rigarts (socially engaged arts and film charity) and West Dunbartonshire Council to ensure that the open areas provide cultural regeneration with the provision of benches, a viewing platform, artistic paving slabs and commemorative door plaques.
Another significant aspect of the design is the way the layout links physically and visually between the High Street, St Augustine's Church, Riverside Parish Church, the river and the Castle. In other words, it has created vistas that tie the area together.
A through vista towards St Agustine's Church.
The relationship between the housing and the River Leven is dramatic.
The monument "viewer" focusing on Dumbarton Castle.
Some barrel seats alude to an earlier era as a distillery.
As to those geese....
....they celebrate the SCOTCH GUARD, the geese that were used by Ballantines to guard the premises.
As Ballantines themselves say: "In true spy style, you need to defend the Ballantine’s whisky stocks, but how? If your instant response was geese, you’re perfect Ballantine’s material.
That’s exactly what Ballantine’s did back in the day. Louder than guard dogs, one honk from the goose squad and the entire distillery would know about an intruder. When you have your own coat of arms, as Ballantines do – awarded by Lord Lyon back in 1938 – only the finest security system will do when it comes to Ballantine’s scotch whisky.
That’s right, the warehouses were guarded by a gang of white feathery wardens, known as the “Scotch Watch”, until 2012 when CCTV took over and these mighty birds were able to kick back and relax. And that’s how it panned out for these lucky birds: the last members of the gaggle lived a well-earned life of luxury over at Glasgow Green".
DUMBARTON HARBOUR HERITAGE PROJECT : https://www.rigarts.org/dumbarton-harbour-heritage-project/
SCOTTISH CONSTRUCTION NOW : https://www.scottishconstructionnow.com/articles/dumbarton-harbour-housing-development-officially-opened