South Ayrshire

Troon Marina
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

Troon Marina

A resort town on the coast of Kyle in Ayrshire, Troon lies at the north end of Ayr Bay on a headland that extends into the Firth of Clyde 7 miles (11 km) north of Ayr and 35 miles (55 km) southwest of Glasgow. The town developed initially on the south side of the headland in association with its natural harbour and in 1808 the Duke of Portland began to build a harbour with docks on the north side. The development of this harbour ensured the growth of Troon into a thriving town. Connected to coal mines near Kilmarnock, it soon became Ayrshire's main coal port. A shipyard established in the 1860s was managed by the Ailsa Shipbuilding Company from 1885 and it was here that the SY Scotia, the research vessel of the Scottish National Antarctic Expedition of 1902-04, was refitted before sailing to the South Atlantic. The shipyard also built the Navy's first paddle minesweeper of the Ailsa class in 1916. A native of Troon David MacIntyre, son of the owner of the Ailsa shipyard, jointly with the Marquess of Douglas and Clydesdale, was the first to fly over Mount Everest (1933), founded Scottish Aviation (1935) and established the Prestwick Flying Training School. With the opening of a railway station in 1892 and the development of three 18-hole golf courses, Troon quickly developed as a resort in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Royal Troon Golf Club's Old Course founded on the links in 1878 first hosted the Open Championship in 1923. Piersland House, now a hotel, was built by Sir Alexander Walker (1869 - 1950), grandson of the whisky magnate Johnnie Walker. Ship building ceased in the 1990s, but repair facilities remain in the form of a pair of dry-docks and the harbour has become a focus for visiting cruise ships, with a marina for pleasure craft, a lifeboat service and roll-on-roll-off ferry links with Ireland.

Troon served as a location in the Sony Pictures time-travel fantasy television series Outlander (2014).

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