My list of places to try and get to this weekend is long and always changing, I saw this one on the map and seeing as the last stone circle was in someone's yard we hoped this one would be more agreeable. After an initial bit of a faff I realised where I was, damn, I thought, it's the one in a garden center.We parked the car, as it's a garden canter there is plenty of room, and we had a look at the signs on the gate, a please use other gate sign, Rottweilers work here, and stone circle please come in and have a look.
It was almost nine o'clock so I knew we'd have to come back tomorrow so we only had a glimpse over the gate and prepared to go. Just then a lady passed by the gate, she saw us and came over, hi, she said, are you alright. I gave back my hello, and said It's a bit late I know but could we have a look at your stone circle ?
Course you can love, come in. Are you listening miserable B'stard, that's how you treat guests.
We followed her through the little home owned garden center, passing what must have been the husband, he looked quizzically and she said its OK for them to have a quick look at the stone circle isn't it ? it seemed a statement of fact rather a question. He took over and showed us the rest of the way. He told us it's a six stone circle, they're quite common round here, then he left us for more gardening activities.
The sun was just going down on another gorgeous day, diffused evening sun glow streamed in through the hedge and this stone circle is perfect, all of its stones are exactly where they should be. Eric played what we call obvious hide and seek, hidden , but in plain view, what ever keeps you quiet dude.
Sure it would be better in more conducive surroundings like on a slight hill with little tree cover, but if it wasn't right where it is then there would not have been anyone around to restore my bit of faith in humanity.
We only had a quick fifteen minutes, but it was better than an hour at somewhere else , it was time to go, we passed by the gardening husband, we both waved and I thanked him with all the genuine warmth I could, we never saw his wife though, and thankfully the Rottweilers were out working elsewhere.
After ignoring the dead-end signs mentioned elsewhere in these fieldnotes we found ourselves at the gate of Tynreich Nursery on a typically overcast Scottish summer's day. We walked in through the deserted driveway and caught a glimpse of the stones off to our right, but found no sign of life other than one of the house's doors lying slightly ajar. Walking ahead, I found the hanging bell at the top of the driveway and gave it a clang as directed.. still no sign of life.
We made our way to the stones and spent about ten minutes in the circle, trying hard to visualise the area minus the trees, buildings & fences, before getting back in the car and heading for Loch Tay.
No-one ever did appear but we were fortunate enough to meet Megan on our way out so I thanked her with some behind-the-ear scratching and bid her farewell.
A lovely site, one of the most peculiar we've had the good fortune to visit.
Thursday 1 May 2003
The directions are already well described on this site, and I can confirm that the people at the nursery were very friendly on both my visits. Despite its proximity to the A9, the circle does somehow seem to remain very peaceful.
It’d be interesting to see the landscape shaven of its forestry to fully appreciate the setting of this circle.
People have remarked that some parts of the ground within the circle feel as if they move slightly and sound kind of hollow if you stamp.
This is certainly noticeable, but speculation that this is the result of the excavated cists may be wide of the mark. The woman from the nursery who showed us to the stones told us that according to a dowser, there seems to be an underground watercourse that goes through the circle.
Finally I’d just add that if the only time you are nearby is during the time when the nursery is shut, you can see the stones well enough to get a ‘feel’ of the circle from outside the nursery, looking in from the access road. Worth seeing even if you can only do it that way….
This circle of six stones is situated in the grounds of a nursery at a dead-end on part of the old A9, which runs parallel to the new A9. Overgrown with gorse and brambles, the circle was re-discovered by workmen clearing the ground for a garden in 1855, as recorded in the Building Chronicle:
'A small Druidical circle was discovered a few days ago at Tynrich, Perthshire close upon the highway....about eighteen feet in diameter, and quite entire, each of its huge stones standing erect and in its proper place; ....while digging and levelling the interior, four huge urns, about two feet in height and one foot in diameter at the mouth, were exhumed, quite full of calcined bones, besides three or four stone coffins, formed of thin, unshapen slabs, and likewise containing the mortal remains of the ancient Caledonians of a pre-historic period. The urns were of very coarse manufacture, and in their removal they were broken to pieces.'
The soil at the centre was stained a darker colour than the surrounding earth, and charcoal and burnt bone material were found. Stamping your feet at one side of the centre of the circle causes the ground to visibly move further across it, and makes a dull thud, as if there are hollows under the ground - possibly where urns or cists have been removed.
The circle is in the grounds of Tynreich Nursery, the owner of which is very friendly, and happy for people to view the circle. But please only visit when the nursery is open:
This six stone ring can be found in the gardens of a plant nursery alongside the A9.
The circle is in a good condition, with the largest stone to the SW a full 6 foot high and over 7 foot wide. Obviously sited on a the foot of a hillside along a major trackway, the circle retains an air of tranquility despite the rumblings of the A9 only a few dozen yards away. Easily accessed, and in fine condition, there is no excuse for not visiting this site!
To visit Tigh na Ruaich, turn off the A9 for Ballinluig some 3 miles south of Pitlochry. Drive past the filling station and down the old A9 ignoring the dead-end signs. At the very end, you will find Tynereich nursery. Ask permission, the owner is very friendly, as is Megan the golden spaniel. The plants are pretty good too, and a couple are now growing outside our front window!
Directions - Head N from Perth on the A9. After approximately 35.0km, take the road to the right for Aberfeldy at the Ballinluig junction. After crossing the south-bound carriageway, take the first left as you enter Ballinluig. This road runs parallel to the A9, and you will pass some houses and a café/restaurant before Ballinluig gives way to a field and wood to your right. The road ends in a dead-end at Tynreich Nurseries. There is plenty of space to park here. Looking at the nursery gate, the circle is in the bottom-right corner of the nursery's grounds, just behind the hedge. Ask permission at the nursery from the friendly owner.