Morvern Community Development Company

Lochaline Harbour, Lochaline, Morvern, PA80 5XT


Morvern boasts a unique history ranging from ancient castles such as Ardtornish, Kinlochaline and Caisteal nan Con, to the more recent Silica Sand Mine.

The area has an interesting variety of rocks covering a vast duration in geological time.  Fossilised sea creatures, known as ‘devil’s toenails’ from the Jurassic period can still be found

Morvern was formerly known as Kinelvadon, taken to be from Cineal Bhaodain. However, like many areas on the West Coast of Scotland, the Vikings left their mark in Morvern where a mixture of Gaelic and Norse place names can still be found.

Before the Highland clearances the population of Morvern was about 2500.  There are many remains of ruined townships throughout the area.  The Forestry Commission have carefully preserved the site at Aoineadh Mòr, near Loch Arienas and visitors are encouraged.

Lochaline Silica Sand Mine began operation in 1940 to replace sources of silica lost during World War II and at its peak employed around 65 staff.  The mine provides some of the purest silica sand found in the UK, and is used in the production of high quality glass such as crystal and optical glass.  Production was particularly important during wartime as the sand was used to make glass for binocular glass, bomb sites and submarine periscopes.  The mine closed in 2008 but reopened in 2012 as Lochaline Quartz Sand Ltd.

When the island of St Kilda was evacuated in 1930, 28 evacuees were rehomed in Morvern.  The men worked with the Forestry Commission where they proved to be strong and hard working.  The St Kildians are remembered for their kindness and hospitality and the remarkable way they adapted to their new surroundings.