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Raiders of Lost Canoes learn to say please

Peace appears to be breaking out over the "Raiders of the Lost Canoes". Talks are under way to resolve the post-reorganisation dispute about who owns equipment stored at Arrochar outdoor centre.

West Dunbartonshire education convener Danny McCafferty admits: "The commando incursion didn't work. So now it's a matter of negotiation." But he remains optimistic that he can get his hands on a substantial part of the collection of canoes, kayaks, cagoules and climbing gear locked up in rival Argyll and Bute.

In May, after West Dunbartonshire decided to withdraw from Arrochar, council staff launched a daring daylight raid to liberate the equipment. Two vans were loaded up and ready to roll when an Argyll and Bute property manager blocked the road with his Land Rover and police were called.

West Dunbartonshire is to have its own base at Balloch Castle. Despite the name there are no military implications: a counter-raid by Argyll is not expected. But equipping the new centre awaits liberation of the gear from Arrochar.

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