Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Tower Hunting

It was nice to see some blue sky today and I took the opportunity to do a wee bit of exploring! It hardly seemed like January 9 though, it was so mild. Still, plenty time for winter to arrive!

I had decided to try find the ruins of Blacklaw Tower just north of Moffat, on the east side of the Evan Valley. It was a pleasant walk in, and out. Except that, just on the right of this photo...

... are six lanes of motorway!

Still, it was easy enough to block out the motorway noise, and just appreciate the surroundings. My OS map told me that Blacklaw Tower was up from here.

If I hadn't had the map I would still be looking. That lump on the right IS the tower, or what remains of it. And yes, I found the strangely cut trees a bit odd too!

Things are a little more impressive from this angle! The details of Blacklaw Tower, built in the sixteenth century, are described in detail on the RCAHMS website here. And the associated map (see here) shows how extensive the complex of tower and associated buildings was.

The situation was a good one, protected on the east side by the deep gully cut by the Blacklaw Burn rushing down to the Evan Water.

There's what seems to be a deep ditch on the north side. The tower would have had a commanding view south, now obscured by the trees of Craik's Craigs Plantation.

Just a little of the vaulted roof of a lower story can be seen.

However, next time I'm heading home down the motorway and getting close to Moffat, I'll certainly remember a pleasant January 2013 walk. This is the point where the Blacklaw Burn goes under the M74.

Back home at Skip, the end of a good day was marked by a beautiful sunset.

Photos © Skip Cottage

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Bob - yet another piece of countryside illuminated! Well done for all the research. Those trees are pollarded - there's a whole bunch (well there used to be) like that on the West bank of the Annan upstream from you!