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Lyonston (Standing Stone / Menhir) — Miscellaneous
Drive by - 28.7.15
A short distance north east of Maybole, along a minor road.
For a change (not) it was raining. It has rained so much this holiday I am now on my second pair of boots. I have had enough of rain for a while. I have had enough of being wet, walking in the rain etc.
A drive by it is then!
The boulder-type stone is easily seen from the A77.
It is on the high point in the field.
A rounded granite boulder about 1.4m in height. According to historian Mr J Gray its local name is Lyonston - from which the naerby farm took its name.
The stone is easy to see alongside the A77 but parking anywhere near is impossible. The stone stands in the middle of a recently ploughed field. It is approximately 1m high x 0.5m wide at the base. It has a pointy top.
The stone must be a considerable pain for the person who has to plough the field :)
South of the A77 along a minor road at Garleffin - a short distance south of the village of Ballantrae.
The stones are easy to spot in the garden of the end bungalow. One stone is in the front lawn, the larger stone is along the side of the house. The stones are approximately 1.5m high and 0.5m wide. The tops of the grey stones are covered in moss. The stones are very easy to see from the road outside the house.
The Canmore site record calls this 'The Witch's Stone'.
On the top of the Craigs of Kyle there was, in former times, a chapel dedicated to Saint Bride. The only vestige of it now remaining is the well, which is still called Saint Bride's Well. No notice is taken of this ancient place of worship in Chalmer's Caledonia, or the Statistical Account of Scotland: but it is worthy of remark, from the existence of another remain of antiquity which has hitherto escaped the observation of topographical or antiquarian writers. This is a Rocking-Stone -- adding another to the many proofs, that the early propogators of Christianity invariably planted the Cross where the inhabitants had been in the habit of assembling under the Druidical form of worship.
The Rocking-Stone occupies the summit of the highest of the Craigs. It is an exceedingly large elongated block of granite, but must have been at one time much larger, as several pieces seem to have fallen from it through the action of the weather, being much exposed to the moisture and storms of the west.
We regret our inability to take an accurate measurement of the stone at the time of our visit, not having been aware of the existence of such a relic. Tradition is silen in reference to it, though it is pointed out as a curiosity by the people in the vicinity. There can be no doubt, however, of its Druidical character. Although it has now lost its vibrating power, being propped up by stones, the pivot is easily discernible.
This bump in the landscape seems to consist of Spy Knowe (crowned by a cairn) and the slightly higher top of Green Hill. This area's landscape features in the Ayrshire ballad 'The Laird o' Changue', which is reproduced here in the Scottish Journal (issue 3, 1847). The notes explain some folklore associated with the top of (what I infer to be) this hill. I am resisting any unwarranted comparisons with the shape of cup and ring marks.
On the conical top of the green hill of Craganrarie, where the indomitable Changue took up his position, are two foot-prints, which tradition asserts to be his, indented deeply in the surface, and around which, at about a sword's length from the centre, are the "two rings" or circles which he drew around him, also strongly marked in the sward. Neither on them, nor on the foot-prints, does the grass ever grow, although it thrives luxuriantly around the very edges of the mysterious markings.
Canmore's record notes that a Langdale/Scafell greenstone axe was found close by the hill in the 1920s.