I went along here on the 14th May 2010. It's easy to find and there's parking nearby. Despite it being just along the road from Stirling I had never visited the site before.
The Broch is the victim of ongoing vandalism, negelect and wanton theft. There is a rumour of stone being spirited away by a local landscape gardener on a quad bike.
There is no sign of the "slab, 13.0cm in diameter, sculptured with three concentric rings, ... five stones into the stair lobby from the inner face of the broch" nor of the "complex carving on a recumbent stone slab at the end of the entrance passage, immediately inside the broch. The carving is of a bar, 19cm long, 9cm wide at one end, and a figure of eight at the other" mentioned on Canmore.
All in all it was quite a dispiriting visit and a real condemnation of the authorities responsible for conserving our heritage.
Two short stones on a roadside bank (south). The eastern stone is gradually being engulfed by gorse. Both stones support ironmongery, presumably in order to support a gate. Why put this in the TMA? Just a feeling. I don't think the metalwork is contemporary with stones and they don't have any notch marks for a timber gate of the sort they used before hinges etc. Besides, they are so low lying I can't believe that they would have made an effective gate. So why are they there?
However, given my experience at Lower Boxton what do I know? Check it out if you are in the area. Park as directed for Lower Boxton
As an aside I reckon the word Boxton is derived from Boagstown, probably named after some Anglo-Saxon character who descended upon these shores between the 6th and 10th centuries.
A bright, if breezy day on the Slamannan Plateaux with clouds scudding east, their dark bellies hinting that the weather could change any minute. It didn't and good old Sol hung in there. A fine day to seek out a couple of stones clustered in this area (according to my old OS 1:25,000 Pathfinder map).
Didn't take long to find. Odd setting I thought. Strange 'rashie' field but the circle of trees surrounding the stone had a charming air. Beech and Elm, although the wee Elms seem to be on their way out. The stone was of sandstone and I fancy I can see hints of the wavelets left in the sand during the Carboniferous. Stone and trees sat within a raised platform, having me think that there was a cairn associated with the stone.
The land about still didn't feel aright and I explored further as the map had referred to 'stones'. New pond for shooting and some of the old shelterbelts seem to have disappeared. Some ruined building and a collapsing dyke. Maybe the stone is built into the dyke. Still no sign. A buzzard screeches above as a cloud passes across the sun, making me shiver. Lots of grasshoppers, meadow browns, dragonflies and a jangling of Goldfinches bring me and the sun back. I returned to the other stone and said goodbye, generally feeling good about the spot.
Went on to visit Boagstown and South Bankhead but not before the "Danger!. Deep Water" (or words to that effect) sign. I reckon there has been a bit of opencast mining here. Could explain the disappearnce of one of the stones.
On getting home I decided to view Canmore before logging into the TMA. Ahh how to steal a soul's thunder..............
...........Stone 'A', situated in a small paddock on rising ground, is 0.4m by 0.2m and 1.0m high, with its main axis E-W.
Stone 'B', on top of a small rounded hillock within a circular plantation ring, measures 0.5m by 0.15m and 1.4m high.
Surveyed at 1:2500.
Visited by OS (AC) 24 April 1959
Both stones show little evidence of weathering and are probably not prehistoric.
RCAHMS 1963, visited 1954
The more northerly of the two stones recorded by the OS (1959) could not be located at the date of survey, due to the disturbance of the ground in the course of opencast mining operations, but the more southerly of the two is preserved on the top of hillock at NS 8853 7385 and matches the description of the OS (1959), having an enclosing bank around it. A local informant described the stone as a marker for a dog burial, which would confirm the view of the previous authority (RCAHMS 1963) that the stones are not antiquities in view of the limited signs of weathering on the surface of the stones, a view with which the current author would concur.
Visited by RCAHMS (PJD) 27 July 1992.........
...........Ho Hum. Guess I just saved some other numpty making the journey. Glad I found out the hard way all the same and did manage to read the Earth aright.
If anyone does fancy visiting, I reckon it may be best to park at NS882738, the former entrance to the opencast, as long as you don't block access completely. Mind out for the fly-tipping and burnt out cars. This is bandit country.
Very depressing place in my opinion, probably lots to do with the cemetery it sits beside. I mean, I quite like some graveyards, but this is a depressing place. Not much beauty.
Maybe it's nicer in summer.