Bishopton regeneration

History of Bishopton ROF

Bishopton Royal Ordnance Factory entrance
The Royal Ordnance Factory Bishopton was home to an explosives factory and other buildings associated with the production of explosives and propellants.
Royal Ordnance Factories (ROFs) was the collective name given to the UK Government's munitions factories in, and after, the Second World War. These factories were the responsibility of the Ministry of Supply, and later the Ministry of Defence, until they were privatised in the late 1980s.
The factory at Bishopton was responsible for producing explosives and propellants from the First World War and continued to supply the Army and Royal Air Force until production ceased in 2002. When operational, the Bishopton site was the Royal Ordnance's primary manufacturer of propellants for gun and rocket systems and around 75% of the buildings date back to the Second World War.

Dargavel House

Within the grounds is Dargavel House, a Grade B listed ‘Tower House’ building. The oldest part of the existing Dargavel House is a Z plan tower which dates back to the late-16th Century and was built by the Maxwell’s of Dargavel.
Throughout the centuries, it has been altered and extended with the latest changes being made around 1910. During the 20th Century, it was used for meetings and training when it became part of the Royal Ordnance site.

Key dates

  • 1915-1919: 550-acre World War One munitions filling factory built
  • 1938: Ministry of Defence compulsory purchased a further 2,000 acres of private land
  • 1938-1940: Three propellant and explosives manufacturing facilities built
  • 2001: Manufacturing at the site ceased
  • 2003: Site is decommissioned
  • 2006: Masterplan for redevelopment of site is established
  • 2009: Outline planning permission for mix of uses granted
  • 2011: First phase of remediation started
  • 2012: First developers join Dargavel Village
  • 2013: First house completed and occupied
  • 2017: Construction of a new M8 motorway junction begins
  • 2018: Craigton Park monument presented to the community to commemorate the historical significance of the former factories to the area
  • 2018: Revised planning permission grated for housing-led development
  • 2018: Dargavel Village judged a winner in the ‘place’ category of the Scottish Awards for Quality in Planning after being nominated by Renfrewshire Council
  • 2019: Dargavel Village awarded ‘Excellence in Planning for Homes – Large Schemes’ award at the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2019