Loch Sloy

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Loch Sloy

Loch Sloy is a mountain loch in the very northernmost part of Dunbartonshire, amongst the Arrochar Alps. It has been swollen in size from its natural extent by a dam built for the Loch Sloy Hydro Electic Scheme, begun in 1945.

The loch is below Ben Vorlich, the county top at 3,093 feet, which stands to the northeast. It lies between Ben Vorlich and Beinn Dubh (2,536 feet), the latter marking the county boundary with Argyll to the southwest.

The Inveruglas Water issues from the foot of the loch, below the dam, to run a short way south to the head of Loch Lomond.

The Loch Sloy Hydro Electic Scheme

Loch Sloy hydro-electric power station

The Loch Sloy Hydro Electic Scheme, to bring power from the mountain streams, was begun early 1945, as the war in Europe was being won. It has a dam 184 feet high, impounding 8 million gallons of water.

The work in 1945 was contracted to Crowley Russel, a Glasgow engineering firm. Camps for workmen were established to north and south and at Ardvorlich and access roads carved through the glens and at one point through a rock-cut tunnel, and access made to a quarry site at Corriegroggan.

Early in the work, German prisoners of war were brought to Sloy to work and learn an honest trade there, at all time accompanied by armed guards. (It is said too that a second contingent, of SS soldiers, were brought to work but proved too troublesome.)[1]

Twenty-one men lost their lives during the construction. [1]

The official opening ceremony took place on 18 October 1950 and was attended by Queen Elizabeth the Queen Consort.

The facility is today operated by Scottish and Southern Energy, and is normally in standby mode, ready to generate electricity to meet sudden peaks in demand.[2] It can reach full-capacity within 5 minutes from a standing start.[3]

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