"GOUROCK, bay, town, and quoad sacra parish, averagely 2 3/4 miles west-north-west of Greenock, Renfrewshire. The bay faces the north; is flanked on the west by Kempock Point; has a half-moon form on a chord of nearly a mile; and is a favourite anchoring place of yachts. The town curves round most of the bay to Kempock Point, and then under the name of Ashton extends about a mile to the south-west; is overhumng throughout by a diversity of braes and hills; commands, both from these and from most of its thoroughfares, delightful views across the firth; sprang from an ancient fishing hamlet, and became very early a favourite watering-place; consists chiefly of a single street-line on an ancient sea-beach, but includes numerous villas and other dwellings on the braes; contains, on a cliff behind the street-line at Kempock, a turretted edifice called Gourock Castle; communicates with all the Clyde steamers plying to places lower down the firth; communicates with Greenock also by tramway; and has a opost office with all departments under Greenock, a banking office, 3 small hotels, a good stone pier and jetty of 1840, a public institute erected in 1875-76 at a cost of more than £7000, an Established church of 1832, Free, United Presbyterian, and Episcopalian churches of later dates, Congregational and Roman Catholic chapels of 1880, and 2 large public schools of 1877. Pop. 3308. Gourock House, in sourthern vicinity of the town, is a modern mansion and stands on or near the site of an ancient castle of the Earls of Douglas. Pop. of the parish, 4263."
[From The Gazetteer of Scotland, by Rev. John Wilson, 1882.]
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Registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths began in Scotland on 1st January 1855. For details of these and other records held at the General Register Office in Edinburgh, see the GRO tutorial.
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