The new nursing home takes shape on the land previously occupied by the Clune Brae Hotel

Clune Brae Hotel

Built in approximately 1971 the hotel stood at the top of the Clune Brae. With the "Baverian Suite" offering space for functions and Noah's Bar being opend to the public.
It was hit by tragedy when a fire ripped through the roof of the building in 1975 and two lifes were lost.

On the 28th August 2002 developers moved in and started the task of clearing the site for Carriick Homes who plan to build a two story nursing home on the land.The initial plans for this replacement building is for a 62 single bedroom home which should be complete some time in early 2003 . The new building seems large compared to the hotel but with a nicely built stone retaining wall and the tunnel from the home to the Community Centre cleaned up with new lighting installed it's hard to picture what it was like before.

Pictures of the fire can be seen on the next page

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Trapped boys killed in hotel inferno Monday 28th April 1975

Port Glasgow Tragedy of brothers after one was warned: Don't play with matches

The incident was report in local press

Police were today trying to solve the mystery of what caused the fire at Clune Brae Hotel Port Glasgow in which two small boys lost their lives yesterday.
A four year old boy and his seven year old brother of Arran Avenue Port Glasgow, were found dead in an 8ft square bin store at the rear of the hotel by firemen.

They had last been seen at their grandparent's home nearby. It is believed that they had wandered down to play around the hotel. Their small tricycle was lying outside the hotel.
The fire is believed to have started in the bin store.
It quickly spread to the main building and soon the wooden shingle roof on the Swiss chalet style building was in flames.

The upper floor containing ten bedrooms was destroyed but four pumps and a hydraulic platform and a hose tender manned by 30 firemen from Greenock, Port Glasgow and Johnstone saved the ground floor accommodation although it was badly damaged by water and smoke

Damage is estimated at around £100,000

By tragic coincidence the father of the two boys was one of the first to help remove furniture from the blazing building unaware that his two boys were trapped in the store.
He tried to get into the bin store but was stopped by a police officer who told him nothing more could be done.
He said later that he had repeatedly warned his boys to keep away from the hotel and added that the elder boy had always been attracted by fire "I often punished him for playing with matches" he said.

The spectacular blaze was watched by hundreds of people who knew nothing of the tragic circumstances of the death of the two children. Smoke could be seen as far away as Inchgreen Drydock.The first alarm came at about 4pm and traffic from Port Glasgow and Kilmacolm was diverted. The roads were open again within two hours but firemen stayed on duty at the hotel until 9pm.Mr Bill Simpson (41) manager of the hotel since it opened in 1971 was in the hotel with his wife Elizabeth McKenzie of 75 Bawhirly Road Greenock.
There were only two guests Mr Charles Gaade, a master mariner from England and Mr Alan Simpson also from England.Mr Simpson said "A man came running in shouting that there was a fire in the building. A few minuets later the hotels fire system came into operation. We immediately started to remove what furniture we could from the ground floor and the unknown man who had raised the alarm brought the hotels hosepipe into use.
I had no idea any children were near the hotel. I thought everyone was safe

Mr Simpson said that the door of the store at the rear was often un-locked and on previous occasions he had had to chase children away from it.Police officers and firemen made a close examination of the store after the fire had been put out. Pieces of material were taken away for forensic examination.
The hotel is owned by Scottish and Newcastle Breweries

This page last modified on Tuesday, November 23, 2010