I was a little thrown by the stones being on a golf course, not being a player the only golf course I know is my local one which is considerably bigger than this one, but when I got there about tea-time no one was there at all but then it had been raining nonstop for two days.
We parked the car in the small street leading to the club and crunched along the path to the hut (which was shut) and there in the distance were the stones, looming large through the fine rain.
Boy are these stones big, you know they're big but your never really prepared for stones of this size. After the wife and kids had gone back to the car a fox came along the wind was the right way so he didn't smell me I crept slowly toward him untill he saw me at about 30 metres we looked at each other and then he was gone. I'd really like to come back one warm summer evening.
As a Hill Runner who has raced up Largo Law on several occasions, the Lundin Links stones hold a special place for me.
The site must have held special significance and offered a place of worship toward Largo Law and North Berwick Law at the other side of the Firth of Forth. Isolated hills which oversee the mouth of the firth of forth holding a special place. The shape of the stones was quite awesome with one in particular being gravity defiying - a construction of superb engineering.I hope to get back at sunset in June to see what the impact is.
As the stones are situated on the middle of a fairway at the golf course it is worth asking permission 1st - although we were met with a knowing smile. Two groups as different as golfers and pre-historians sharing something adds to the vibe.
I had a worky visit nearby when my accomplice suggested taking a slight detour on the return journey to some stones he knew of at a Ladies Golf Course… I was sceptical because he isn’t a believer (!) and I thought yeah, golf course, stones, hmmm… but then I saw them, wow! Well impressed with these, they are enormously tall. Made up for the gigantic weight of guilt for taking a 20-minute skive to see them!!
It was a gorgeous day for it, had to push past a couple of Old Dears on the first tee (“you off to see the stones, then?”) – the stones are on the second tee. On the way back we visited the little golf hut and the bloke gave us a printed handout, details posted separately. Not surprisingly, the handout says the stones are called “Lundin Ladies Standing Stones”.
Originally they would have been able to see down towards the Forth below. One stone appears to have cups, but it is probably just weathering.
I have a great love for these stones, I went to school in Lundin Links and lived in the sister village of Lower Largo. I learned to play gowf here, we weren't allowed on the big boys links, and lost a few balls in the rough around the stones - years ago they let the grass grow here. At near by Norries Law there was a find of Pictish silver, the finder melted most of it down, but some pieces survived and can be seen in Edinburgh. In Upper Largo Kirk By the gate is a Pictish symbol stone.
A visit to Lundin Links is also a visit to the cover shot for `Rite`. These three are big. This is the kind of setting that conjures images of people turned to stone. Look carefully as you approach from the west, and they loiter around beyond the modern housing. Approached along the fairway, they stand and lean like hopeless golfers. Up close they are seriously intimidating, imposing themselves upon you as they direct the clouds across the wide open Fife sky.
Various have been the conjectures as to the origin of the erection of the [stones]; they are commonly known by the name of the Standing Stanes of Lundy, a seat belonging to a very old family of the name of Lundin, now to Sir William Erskine, near Largo in Fife.
Tradition tells us, they were placed there in memory of that victory gained by Constantine II. over Hubba, one of the generals of the Danish invaders, about the year 874. It is certain that battle was fought near this spot; but whether these were in memory of the action or not, I cannot determine: It is more than probable they were of a much older date.
I have been found fault with for looking farther back than I should upon a former occasion, and by a person who never examined the subject which I endeavoured to give an account of. I shall not here controvert his arguments; I do not sit down for that purpose: My aim is to amuse myself at a leisure hour, and add my mite to an useful and entertaining publication.
From a clearly irritated correspondent in the Edinburgh Magazine of November 1785 (p324).
Taken from a printed handout at Lundin Ladies Golf Club:
Approximately 700 metres west of the Clubhouse, the stones stand in an area rich in archaeological remains. Early 18th century reports note the discoveries of several possible cist burials. Finds include a jet button.
The three irregularly shaped pillars of red sandstone form the most impressive group of standing stones in Fife.
They may have been part of a circle, if so it would have been 16 metres in diameter. In the late 18th century the base of a fourth stone was present, with its broken upper part nearby. Unfortunately the position of this fourth stone has been lost. Small cairns surround the base of the stones.
The two black and white photos were taken in 1954/55 with a Brownie Box 620 when I was about eleven.The fences were eventually removed,they were badly damaged by hookers and slicers retrieving lost golf balls.