Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Ardrossan Shipbuilding Co

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The firm of Barr and Shearer was established in 1842 at Ardrossan, North Ayrshire, Scotland, and changed its name in the 1870s to become the Ardrossan Shipbuilding Co.

1842 The firm of Barr and Shearer was established in 1842 at Ardrossan, North Ayrshire by John Barr and James Shearer

1870s Changed its name in the 1870s to become the Ardrossan Shipbuilding Co

1889 See 1889 Shipbuilding Statistics for detail of the tonnage produced

1889 Twin-screw yacht 'Ormea'

1891 it acquired limited liability, as Ardrossan Dockyard Ltd, but was dissolved eight years later, at which time a successor company, the Ardrossan Dry Dock & Shipbuilding Co Ltd was incorporated.

1899 the name was changed to the Ardrossan Dry Dock and Shipbuilding Co. The yard was also expanded up to five berths in 1916 and the number of employees was 2,300.

WWI During the First World War the new south yard was constructed and from 1919, Harland and Wolff managed the yard on behalf of the Royal Mail Group. During the war the yards made minesweepers, small warships. two standard type "H" colliers, and a standard coaster.

1925 a new company, Ardrossan Dockyard Ltd, was incorporated. This company was later placed under the control of Coast Lines Ltd (a member of the Royal Mail Group) and John G. Kincaid and Co, marine engineers, Greenock, Inverclyde, Scotland.

1930, the south yard was purchased and closed by National Shipbuilders Security, London

WWII The company made eight coasters for Coast Lines and a number of others for the Government. The yard also built trawlers and boom defence vessels for the Admiralty.

1950s In the late 40s and 50s the yard built mini-cargo liners for Spanish and European companies along with a Clyde ferry

1960s The yard was sold to ship repairers and the North yard and dry dock closed in 1969.

1962 Archibald D. Kelly acquired the remaining yard and attempted to modernise

1969 The company closed

See Also

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Sources of Information

  • [1] Glasgow University Archives
  • [2] Archives Hub
  • British Shipbuilding Yards. 3 vols by Norman L. Middlemiss
  • The Engineer of 12th April 1889 p322