Argyll Colliery – Grand Dance and Challenge Match

These announcements from Campbeltown Courier, which date back to 19th of March 1953, give us an insight into the important role that Argyll Colliery, Machrihanish, once played in everyday Campbeltown life. Miners contributed hugely to the community in the 1950’s and 1960’s and here we see how they organised children’s Gala Days each year for not just miners’ but for all local children. Dances were held at the Miners’ Welfare Hall in Bolgam Street (formerly the Old Courthouse), at the Victoria Hall, The White Hart Hotel and the Templar Hall.  Football matches, like this one, where the Argyll Colliery team played against Shotts Bon Accord, Lanarkshire, were used as opportunities to raise funds for local good causes, in this instance for the Cottage Hospital  TV Scheme. Football was an integral part of miners’ leisure time, whether as a spectator or as a player.


Argyll Colliery and Children’s Gala Day Association Grand Dance at the Templar Hall. Challenge Match – Argyll Colliery F.C. versus Shotts Bon Accord. Campbeltown Courier, 19th March 1953. Courtesy of the Campbeltown Library collection.


The former Miners’ Welfare Hall, Bolgam Street, Campbeltown. Photo: Jan Nimmo ©


Supper and dance at the White Hart Hotel

Thanks to curator at Campbeltown Museum, Elaine McChesney, for the photograph below. The ticket was given to the Museum by Donald Irwin of Drumlemble. This would have been one of many social events organised by the Miners’ Social Club in Campbeltown. The Club was situated in Bolgam Street, in what was originally the Court House, which is thought to be one of the oldest buildings in Campbeltown. The White Hart Hotel is situated on the corner of Main Street and Argyll Street. I’d  be interested to hear more about these supper dances and am wondering what “Informal Dress” would have looked like in 1949! If you have any information please contact me here.


Miners’ Social Club Supper and Dance ticket from 1947. The ticket was given to Campbeltown Museum by Donald Irwin. Photo courtesy of Campbeltown Museum.


The Old Courthouse, Campbeltown, was used as the Miners’ Welfare Hall and served the employees of Argyll Colliery, Machrihanish. This photo was taken in 2007. Photo: Jan Nimmo ©