From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
The Twelve Apostles at Catacol Bay - - 679050.jpg
The Twelve Apostles at Catacol Bay
Catacol is located in North Ayrshire
Location within North Ayrshire
OS grid referenceNR909496
Civil parish
  • Kilmory
Council area
Lieutenancy area
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtKA27
Dialling code01770
EU ParliamentScotland
UK Parliament
Scottish Parliament
List of places
55°41′42″N 5°19′34″W / 55.695°N 5.326°W / 55.695; -5.326Coordinates: 55°41′42″N 5°19′34″W / 55.695°N 5.326°W / 55.695; -5.326

Catacol (Scottish Gaelic: Catagal) is a small village on the Isle of Arran, Scotland. It is located on the north west side of the island, just a few miles along the coastal road from Lochranza at the foot of Glen Catacol, a steep-sided valley. It derives its name from Old Norse, referring to the 'gully of the cat'.

Catacol's main feature is the row of cottages called the 'Twelve Apostles', which were completed around the middle of the 1860s.[1] They were built to house those people cleared from the surrounding countryside, when much of the interior of the island was set aside for deer, the hunting of which it had become fashionable among the landed gentry. The theory was these former farmers would turn to fishing, and with this in mind, each of the twelve cottages had a differently shaped first floor window. This would allow the woman of the house to signal by placing a candle in the window to her husband while he was out fishing in the Firth of Clyde. The husband would know who was being signalled by the shape of the window. In reality, most of the dispossessed moved away to other parts of the island in protest against their eviction, and the houses remained empty for 2 years, during which time they were known as "hungry row".[1]

The village formerly housed a hotel, the Catacol Bay Hotel, which permanently closed in September 2018.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Basford, Joan, ed. (2002). History of the Villages of the Isle of Arran. Scottish Women's Rural Institute. p. 29. ...from old newspapers found plastered on to the roof timbers of one of the houses it is clear that they were not completed until the middle of the 1860's
  2. ^ "Welcome to Catacol Bay Hotel". Catacol Bay Hotel. Retrieved 3 August 2009.

External links[edit]