The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian


Stone Circle


Blimey - They've let this place go a bit! 14 October 2010

This place has a few names. Lamlash Road Circle on Canmore. Blairmore Circle locally. Lamlash Stone Circle on TMA. They were the first stones I ever visited on Arran over thirty years ago. Regardless of what the circle is called, this group of stones occupies a superb location, albeit rendered rather impotent, being hemmed in by hundreds of acres of Sitka Spruce on both sides of the road (thoughh to be fair, some of the forestry is at last being cleared). As I approached the outlier, I set up a Barn Owl which had been using the stone as a perch to vomit up its pellets. It lifted off silently and drifted into the trees towards Clauchlands leaving its last pellet on the outlier, steaming slightly in the cold of the morning.
The four surviving stones are perched on a slight knoll, at the highest point on the road between Lamlash and Brodick. The stones were barely poking their heads up out of the mass of heather and bracken. The site used to be regularly cleared of the heather and bracken though this hasn't happened for a for a while!. A few years back a fire caused some cracking and damage to the outlier. A rock cut cist was found in the centre of the three main stones but isn't exposed nowadays. There are other large stones half hidden under the peat on and around the mound. There is little to be seen or made sense of here now. This site should be an almighty place. It should look North to Goatfell, Cir Mhor and the jagged ridges of North Arran. Instead it is hemmed in by scrubby Birch, Willow and the massive Spruce plantations of the 1930's and 1940's. To the South, Holy Island, Blairmore Standing Stones and the robbed out Dunan Beag and Dunan Mor cairns are now invisible, swamped by forestry.
Through the forestry track another mile to the coast leads you to the hillfort at Clauchlands (not listed on TMA). The forest trek takes you through some of the best Pitchstone areas on Arran and you can grab yourself a little souvenir pebble of the shiny glassy stone our ancestors loved so much. A beautiful circular walk takes you back to Brodick by the very best pitchstone outcrops at Corriegills.
I believe that one day these stones at Lamlash Road could be sympathetically restored to something rather special. The site's original majesty was in its location. With the forestry removal currently underway on this magical island there is a real opportunity to re-instate the views and carefully excavate the peaty knoll and its immediate surroundings for the surviving stones fallen comrades. But I wont hold my breath.
Howburn Digger Posted by Howburn Digger
25th October 2010ce
Edited 25th October 2010ce

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