Friday 6 May 2011

Friday 6th May

The weather has turned here so it has been raining for the last few days which is good news for the plants because they have been in desperate need of a good watering.  The flowers are flourishing especially on the drive up to the castle grounds which is covered in cuckoo flowers, dandelions, some daffodils and lesser celandine.  It is a good time to go out looking at some of the spring flora and fauna around the estate.

If you are interested in history then a nice walk up Glen Tilt should tantalise the brain cells.  There was once many settlements in Glen Tilt in the 17th century which probably dated back much further but unfortunately our records do not go that far back.  These settlements would have been rented as small farming grounds and houses by the estate.  Auchmarkmore for example, which can still be seen heading  through Glen Tilt up from Gilberts Bridge,  was first recorded in 1705 when it was two brothers by the name of Stewart. There also used to be a school which taught up to 60 children at Auchgobhal between 1776 and 1787 so there were a few hundred people living in the glens. 

As better agricultural practices developed all these small settlements were combined into larger ones which would have been rented out most likely for sheep farming.  Auchmarkmore  dissapeared from the records in 1790 when again it was occupied by the Stewarts.  These larger areas of land would have provided the estate with a higher rent.  This occurred between the 1780s - 1820s and was a very gradual and slow process and by the time the Highland clearances came about there would have been few people living in Glen Tilt.   So if history is your interest then what more reason do you need to come and get some exercise in the glens and see how many ruins of settlemets you can see. 

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