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Showing posts from April, 2015

Dundurn - Ancient Pictish Fort

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I mentioned in my “ blog “ of 11 September 2014 ( “Pictish Strathearn and a lost or misplaced Kingdom !”  ) the ancient fort of Dundurn at St Fillans and its historic past . I made a brief  mention of the excavations  carried out in 1977/1977 by The University of Glasgow . In this “ blog “ I will elaborate in more detail what  emerged from the dig and the importance of this odd shaped hill in Strathearn’s violent past !
Where is Dundurn ?
Dundurn lies adjacent to St Fillans Golf Club . If you take the  road past the Club you come to the ruined church and graveyard . This is the site of St Fillans Pre Reformation Chapel  which was  demolished over 400 years  ago and replaced as the mausoleum of the Stewarts of Ardvorlich .Although now roofless , much remains . Near  the door is  an inscribed “A “ which presumably  stands  for Ardvorlich . Between the  door and window  there is a recessed aumbry – the place in the pre Reformation church where the  chalices for  the sacrament were kept . …

Whisky –Uisge Beatha- the Water of Life and Crieff’s Distilling Heritage

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The Glenturret Distillery on the edge of Crieff is one of the oldest distilleries in Scotland It  was officially established in 1775  when  it  began to pay taxes to the Government but in fact  was  run  by illicit distillers as far back as 1717 . Whisky is known in the Gaelic  as “ uisge beatha “ pronounced oosky ba and meaning the water of life ! Please remember  that we Scots spell it “ whisky whilst our Celtic brethren in Ireland spell it “ whiskey “ !!
Although Glenturret  - home of the Famous Grouse brand is  a  major  tourist  attraction locally here in Strathearn , it  should not  be forgotten that distilling was carried on here for many years with more than a few distilleries scattered about the area . Porteous in his “ History of Crieff “ published  in 1912  gives a detailed account of how  it became  such an important part of the local economy . I replicate his writings below :
Distilling
Crieff was long famed for the superior quality of whisky which was produced in and around…