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The Bull Stone

Natural Rock Feature


The monument comprises a large rock outcrop into which a vestry was excavated in 1825, to accommodate the parish minister while he conducted openair services.

Pulpit Rock, or Clach nan Tarbh (the stone of the bulls), lies some 2km south of Ardlui. In 1825 parisioners living in the northern part of the Parish of Arrochar complained of the distance that they had to travel to church services, some 13km each way. The Minister, the Reverend Peter Proudfoot, responded to his parishioners' complaint saying that if they would build him a vestry he would come and preach to them on certain occasions. The parishioners cut and then blasted a hole in the rock large enough to accommodate the Minister, an Elder and the Precentor.

The shelter in the rock formed the vestry. It had a wooden door and was reached by a flight of steps. A wooden pulpit was fixed to a platform bolted on to the side of the rock. Services were held during the summer months for about 75 years until 1895 when a mission church was established in Ardlui. During the services the congregation sat on the ground around Pulpit Rock.

When the West Highland Railway was built it passed to the west of the rock, so avoiding this religious landmark.

Historically the monument is of national importance as a relatively late example of an open-air preaching site, and is a rare example of the modification of a natural site by blasting to provide a vestry.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

The above information is taken from Pulpit Rock on Ancient Monuments website.
Posted by markj99
26th December 2022ce

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