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West Dunbartonshire Coat of Arms

May 2016+

alexander (personal name) Unknown .

Population - 13,444.

West Dunbartonshire Coat of Arms

Named after a reasonably great Alexander, Smollett[1], leader of the then land-owning family in the Vale of Leven. Twenty miles north-west of Glasgow so far enough away for fields and hills but close enough for the former factories on the flow out of Loch Lomond.

There was industry on the River Leven by the late 18th century where they competed on the cotton front with their namesakes in Egypt, probably.

Not for cotton this factory but cars and the clue's under the clock.

Alexandria - Argyll Motors Ltd Alexandria - Argyll Motors Ltd Clock

Home to Argyll Motors Ltd, they moved to this purpose-built plant in 1906 from their existing operation in Glasgow before they went bust... in 1908.

Bankruptcy was undoubtedly due to the sudden death of its founder Alexander Govan in 1907. Without a driving force, the indicators weren't good and manufacturing stalled etc.

[1] For film fact fans, there's a character in Treasure Island with the same name as played by Kermit the Frog in the Muppets™' version.

The ornate, marbled interior remains and it's thought the café occupies the original workers' dining area. The north wing, however, is in need of a bit of TLC or, a complete restoration if you'd rather.

Alexandria - Inside Argyll Motors Ltd Alexandria - Argyll Motors Ltd Alexandria - Rear of Argyll Motors Ltd

That's a bit of a shame because the rear of this is also the view over somebody's back garden fence.

The place now operates as a retail outlet called Lomond Galleries but beyond Pavers™ no longer doing a small line in discount  Skechers™ and The Works[1] supplying you with an out of date Rough Guide™, your attention is likely to be on the building.

Oh! Unless you need a kilt. Yeah, nearly forgot about the  kilts.

[1] They're stocking way too many of those adult colouring-in books, these days.

Given that the only reason you're here is that it's awfy dreich ootside, there's more  indoor shopping at the signposted Antartex Village outlet. It too has also seen better days, probably, but still does a decent line in the discount outdoors.

Alexandria - Antartex Village Balloch - Loch Lomond Shores

They both have to compete you see with the more modern  Loch Lomond Shores. It's just up the road in Balloch and after fifteen years, they're finally filling their vast car park.

 
Loch Lomond Brewery (Lomond Industrial Estate)

Local beer producers of both the traditional and the crafty variety. You can stock up in their shop and they host regular beery events.

Most people will bypass Alexandria completely on their way to the B&Bs in Balloch and the boats on Loch Lomond. As a great man called Alexander once said, though, 'There is nothing impossible to him who will try.'

Wise words, indeed, and they're trying their very best here.

 
Loch Lomond Distillery (Lomond Industrial Estate)

Small, three still setup producing grain and malt whiskies. They'll even let small groups of you in for a tour and uisge tastings but you'll need to give them a ring first.

Alexandria - Loch Lomond Distillery

Having spent quite a bit of time in the area, these are just the empties from last Saturday night, probably.