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Highland Cows

Today, I visited Loch Lomond, the largest fresh water lake in the British Isles, using the village of Luss as a base.

Luss is a Gaelic word meaning ‘herb’ or ‘plant’.

Weather was windy with rain in the air. Water was so choppy that even the ducks and swans  remained on the shore.

In addition to exploring Luss and its environs I joined a 90 minute boat trip which toured the eastern end of the Loch and its various islands.

As will be evident from images below, I encountered a variety of interesting sights and sites including curly horned sheep, Highland Cows, Fallow Deer, a wedding, piper, lots of landscapes, Luss Church, Ross Dhu Mansion (seat of chief of Clan Colquhoun), Conic Hill (a geological feature) and village of Aldochlay.

Curly Horned Sheep.

Wedding at Luss Church.

Luss Parish Church. This is built on an ancient Christian site dating back about 1500 years.

Loch Lomond scenery.

Conic Hill, an important geological feature.

410 m years ago (Silurian Period): Scotland united with England and Wales at a position close to/connected with North America. The ‘join’ between England and Scotland is parallel with Hadrian’s Wall. The physical act of  joining England and Scotland created a high mountain range, possibly comparable with today’s Himalayas but which has since been substantially eroded. At time of the join the lands were located about 10 degrees south of the equator. Prior to the joining the land which became Scotland was a series of terranes which subsequently joined together to form a single land mass. The Highland Boundary fault featuring Conic Hill at Loch Lomond is an example of a terrane boundary.

Ross Dhu, an 18th century mansion and now seat of the Chief of Clan Colquhoun.

Aldochlay, a village near Luss.

Luss, a heritage village on banks of Loch Lomond. About 750, 000 persons visit each year.

Beinn Dubh ( ‘Black Mountain’) on western side of Loch Lomond.

Sail Boat on Loch Lomond

Floors Castle, Kelso, Scotland.

This evening, I mam posting information on Floors Castle  which is located near Kelso  in the Scottish Borders. This spectacular mansion stands on a terrace overlooking the River Tweed. Key facts:

  • Home of the 10th Duke and Duchess of Roxburghe
  • Reputedly the largest inhabited castle in Scotland.
  • Designed by the renowned William Adam for the first Duke of Roxburghe with building commencing in 1721.
  • The original Adam design was embellished under the 6th Duke. Then, around 1849, the architect William Playfair transformed the castle with a multitude of spires and domes.
  • Internally, the spectacular state rooms house collections of paintings, tapestries and furniture. The latter features an important collection of 17th and 18th century French items.
  • Outside there  is extensive parkland and gardens offering a variety of wooded walks. The Walled Garden  contains magnificent herbaceous borders whilst in the outer Walled Garden  can be found a summerhouse built for Queen Victoria’s visit in 1867.

Walled Garden, Floors Castle, Scotland

Walled Garden, Floors Castle, Scotland

At the Castle there is a restaurant, gift shop and guided tours. Just four miles away is the Roxburghe Hotel & (Championship) Golf Course.

A worthwhile attraction in the Borders region.

Floors Castle

Thomson Monument, Kelso, Scotland

This evening I am posting information on the person commemorated by a huge monument on the landscape between Kelso and Ednam in the Scottish Borders, about forty four miles S.E. of Edinburgh.

This monument is dedicated to James Thomson (1700-1740), a Scottish poet and dramatist. Summary information on Thomson as follows:

  • Born in village of Ednam, one of nine children and son of local Presbyterian Minister.
  • Attended school in Jedburgh (Scottish Borders) and then Edinburgh University where he studied Divinity.
  • Abandoned studies in 1725 and moved to London where he worked as a tutor.
  • One of most popular series of poems was The Seasons (1730).
  • Wrote extensively for the stage producing such tragedies as Agamemnon (1738), Tancred and Sigismunda (745) and Coriolanus (1748).
  • Also in 1740 wrote words of Rule Britannia (music by Thomas Arne (1710-1778)).
  • During 1735-6 wrote Liberty which was dedicated to Prince of Wales who awarded Thomson a pension.
  • Thomson’s masterpiece considered to be The Castle of Indolence which was produced prior to his death.
  • Thomson is buried in St Mary’s Church, Richmond, England. There is a statue of Thomson in Westminster Abbey, London.

The monument stands on a prominent ridge from where are good views of the local landscape.

Scottish Borders Landscape.