The Centre started life in 1979, when the late Hugh Mckerrell and his wife Christine bought the old primary school of Lochranza to run as an outdoor study centre. In the early eighties the centre accommodated around 50 people. Thanks to the support of the Highlands and Islands Development Board, in the mid-eighties the Centre was able to expand to take around 80 people.
In 1990, Hugh Mckerrell and his wife decided to retire from the Centre and Hugh pursued other interests, such as the setting up of the Arran Coastal Way and establishing the Arran Antiquarian Society. Peter Gordon Lawrence of PGL fame bought the Centre, and it remained under the ownership of PGL until 2015. During this time the Centre expanded in capacity to be able to take over 100 people. Outdoor activities and family activity holidays were also developed during this period.
In 2015, PGL announced that they no longer wished to operate the Lochranza Centre premises. This created the prospect of losing a lovely and inspirational location. The current Directors, Stuart Blake and Chris Traill, who together have over 55 years’ experience at the Centre, tried to gain financial backing to purchase and run the site. Thanks to the help and support of some small investors, Triodos Bank and the local community, on October 20th 2015, the Centre launched as a not-for-profit, Community Interest Company. We are extremely grateful to all those people who have wished us well and supported us with their loyal custom. We are also extremely honoured and proud to be the custodians of such a special location which we hope everyone will have a chance to visit sometime in their lives!
We hope that some of the images throughout the website entice you to visit the centre.
Stuart Blake and Chris Traill – Owner Directors.