Little Cumbrae (Scottish Gaelic Cumaradh Beag) is an island in the Firth of Clyde, in North Ayrshire, Scotland. The island is known locally as Wee Cumbrae.
Little Cumbrae lies barely a kilometre to the south of its larger neighbour, Great Cumbrae
. The islands are collectively referred to as The Cumbraes
. In stark contrast to its neighbour, green and fertile Great Cumbrae
, Little Cumbrae is a rough and rocky island. With its many cliffs and rocky outcrops
Little Cumbrae bears more of a resemblance to a Hebridean
island than to some of its neighbours in the Clyde.
A number of uninhabited islets skirt the island's east coast, Castle Isle, the Broad Islands and Trail Isle.
Today the island's main settlement is at Little Cumbrae House on the eastern shore, facing the Scottish mainland.
is said to have built a castle on the island which was demolished by Cromwell
's soldiers in 1653.
was built in 1793
by Thomas Smith
who was under commission from the Commissioners of the Northern Lights
. The lighthouse lies on a broad raised beach
on the western shore of the island looking out into the Firth.
Prior to the creation of the lighthouse, Little Cumbrae had an open fire light atop Lighthouse Hill. This extremely old structure can still be seen.
Little Cumbrae was privately purchased in 2003 and there were plans for its development as a memorial park, nature reserve and corporate escape, but the island is now being sold for £2.5 million. It is under consideration by an entrepreneur to be opened as a luxury resort.