Pladda Lighthouse

Pladda-Front ______ Pladda-scenic 2007

Taken from Kildonnan

Copyright-Unknown_________________Copyright - Richard Bishop-Miller

31st.July 1973
I caught a ferry to Isle of Arran,Taxi to Kildonnan Hotel.The boatman was not expected for a couple of hours so there was time for a pint of beer,which was just as well as it was to be the last one for a month.

Pladda Island is about one mile south of Isle of Arran just opposite the Kildonnan Hotel.The boatman eventually arrived,just as well I'd packed some wellingtons as it was a scrabble over rocks to the waters edge,a fairly small boat and over to Pladda where at least there was a proper pier to land at,then tractor and trailer to the lighthouse.

Luck of the draw I was on watch so the PLK gave me a quick tour. A paraffin light with clockwork mechanism and Kelvin engines driving compressors for the fog siren.

The new to me equipment was a Radio Beacon which every six minutes transmitted (for Pladda) the morse code for DA a few times followed by a continuous tone allowing the radio operator on the ship to align his aerial and find his bearing from Pladda.

Communication with the outside world was by radio to Corsewell lighthouse who could then connect us to the telephone network. A couple of months later I was at Corsewell and seeing this from the other end.

Pladda originally had a high and low light in two seperate lightrooms,only the high light was in use when I was there,one of the keepers used the lower lightroom for growing tomatoes.

Pladda was originally an Island station so there was plenty of accommodation,though washing facilities were not exactly modern,we had a so called portable shower,a containor filled with water and hand pumped to pressurise it and feed a hand held water dispensor - absolutely useless.
The old washroom had an old gas fired copper (boiler used for laundry) so you could heat a reasonable amount of water and splash it about when having a stand-up bath.
So I honed up my cooking skills?as well as getting in practise at running fog horns etc.and a month passed away.

Off ashore,taxi to the ferry and back to civilisation.

I never did take photographs as I travelled around as a supernumerary,if you have photographs you have taken I would be pleased to add them to the site all copyright acknowledged.