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  • David Leavitt

World War II

To be clear, this photo of what we believe is the Queen Elizabeth Aircraft Carrier is NOT from World War II. Chelom and I took the photo from just outside the door of the Castle last month. Loch Long, the long narrow loch right next to the castle served as an important role during WWII. Loch Long, because of its depth and length, it was a torpedo test site, among other things. Our neighbor and friend Stephen Dick gave us this tidbit of World War II history: "The Loch was used to store allied naval shipping during WW2 and there were many war ships anchored in the Loch during that time. Cape Cove, which is just across the Shore Road from you, was built on top of an old concrete plinth that was cast on top of the rocks as a base for search lights and anti-aircraft guns.

Our Niece who is doing amazing things on our Instagram page for us posted a video of me lowering some blinds. Amazingly, as of this writing, the video has been seen over 128,000 times! The old set of blinds belies the grandeur of the home. A few days ago, Darren McLean, our window conservationist, was on site discussing the restoration of the many windows at Knockderry and he explained that the blind in the Instagram video is actually a World War II blackout blind, hung in all homes in areas of high risk for German bombing runs during the war. As an American who has never really seen the true horror of war, I can only imagine the castle, blinds drawn down tight, sitting in the dark so that no light from the castle would tip off the German Air Force of its location right next to the critical shipping and submarine installations along Loch Long.

As you can see from the photo, Loch Long is still used as a fueling port for aircraft carriers, submarines, and even cruise ships. I have to say that there's something just a little bit odd about being around such a peaceful spot as Knockderry and seeing a submarine, aircraft carrier, or cruise ship float quietly by. It's all just another part of the uniqueness of this amazing place!

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Lorna Scaife
Lorna Scaife
Aug 17, 2023

The Castle greenhouse was bombed during WWII. The reflection of the glass in the moonlight is believed to have confused the German bombers into thinking it was a Clydebank factory. My dad told me this story, he was a young boy during the war, living just along the road from the castle.


Jul 16, 2023

How interesting! Thanks for sharing! Sweet to think that your castle was a hospital for the WW11 casualties.

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