A keen hillwalker and history buff has set up a new heritage tour business to show off the beauty and story of the local area.

Gerena Sumen has spent many hours at the Mitchell Library and Dumbarton Library brushing up on her knowledge in preparation for the 60-minute guided walk around Luss, which she launched recently.

The 63-year-old, who previously worked for Visit Scotland and as a guide for Hill House in Helensburgh and the Burrell Collection, has decided to focus on the village initially because she knows it well and feels that more should be done to promote it and the surrounding area.

She told the Reporter: “I have been a hillwalker for over 30 years, doing most of the Munros and climbing a few high mountains such as Mount Kilimanjaro, but I love history too and thought I would like to combine the two with a walking tour.

“I love showing tourists Luss, telling her history, architecture and clan legends and other tales.

“My favourite stop on the walking tour is Loch Lomond. I find the beauty and the moods in the landscape can give visitors an insight to the outdoors that you can only feel in this beautiful location.

“I’ve been told a lot of people don’t visit Luss and just keep going up the road and when they do stop, they say they never knew it was there, so I’m trying to promote a local place and the wider community, so that people know about it.”

Gerena loves the village so much she travels down from her home in Arrochar to take the tour, which covers Luss’ crowning glory the miner cottages, the village’s ancient past, its present and its war heroes in World War One.

She also shares her knowledge of St. Kessog and early Christianity, Luss Parish Church, Shore Cottage, the clans Colquhoun, MacFarlane and McGregor, and of course Loch Lomond and Ben Lomond.

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One of her favourite tales from the tour, however, involves the Clan Colquhoun’s capture of Dumbarton Castle from the Earl of Lennox.

The people of the castle were starving because they were being sieged, and Sir John Colquhoun set loose a deer and a hound, so that the castle men would open the gates to go hunting.

They came out chasing the deer and left the gates open and Sir John and his men gained entry to the castle and captured it without any bloodshed.

She added: “I like the idea that it’s almost like a Trojan horse thing, putting the stag and hound out for them to come out and not realising they had left the gates open.

“It shows everyone can make a mistake and they managed to take a castle without killing anyone.”

And while she has had people from around the world join her tours, she is hopeful that the chance to find out fascinating local snippets of history such as this will inspire more local people to come and join her.

She added: “I’m hoping to get locals as well as visitors form abroad, that’s what I would like.

“I think (knowing the history) makes people appreciate more where they are living. Hopefully it will engage them, so they might look things up more when they get home and I’ll maybe see them again.”

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The tours cost £10 for adults and depart at 11am and 2pm on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.

For more information visit argyllwalks.co.uk.