Strathard Heritage Digital Archive





The Bruach Caoruinn Collection by James Kennedy.

    Loch Ard Local History Group visit to Wee Bruach Caoruinn 2016.

    The Bruach Caoruinn sites are really something special and we are delighted to be able to share this collection with you. There are several reports and papers which focus on these sites. If you follow the links associated with a description of each you should be able to download the reports or get further information. We are very grateful to Professor Niall A. Logan in supporting the Loch Ard Local History Group in developing our understanding about these sites. Support from colleagues at Forestry and Land Scotland from Matt Ritchie, Shirley Leek and John Hair has been essential in gaining access and developing knowledge of the sites. Last and by no means least was all the effort by Katy Lamb to ensure that these important sites became known to our selves and the wider community. You can read Katy’s perspective by using this link.

    The 2 papers from Professor Niall A. Logan are very comprehensive and detailed. In addition there is an earlier paper which he prepared as he begun to get to know the sites. The latter 2 articles were published by the Scottish Vernacular Buildings Working Group and we thank them for their permission for use of the articles which are here and here. Copyright for the articles and images is held by Professor Logan.

    Bruach CaoruinnArchaeological measured survey and historic archive investigation–produced by Matt Ritchie in May 2019. What follows is the front page but the rest of the report can be downloaded.

    Forestry and Land Report

    In ‘ Picturing the past‘ published in Current Archaeology in September 2018, Matt Ritchie explores the use of powerful visual tools to enhance knowledge, raise awareness and provide a baseline record for conservation.

    Cover page of ‘Picturing the past.’

    The Inventory of the Ancient Monuments of Stirlingshire, Volume II ( RCAHMS, 1963) devotes over 2300 words to these sites, equally shared between them over nearly three pages, accompanied by a plate and two site plans. An extract from the document can be accessed here.

    Little Bruach- Caoruinn site plan of 1955

    Canmore holds the National Record of the Historic Environment and provides details of Wee Bruach Caoruinn and can be found using this link.

    Forestry and Land Scotland commissioned Mairi Stewart to provide a ‘Documentary history of the lands of Brachern‘ to offer a further perspective on the two townships. The report suggests that landholding can reach back to the 13th century if not earlier.

    Cover of Documentary History report by Mairi Stewart.

    If you use any of the main internet search engines it won’t take long before you come across speculation that the sites may at some point be the focal points of illicit whisky distillation. Elsewhere on the site is an article from the Stirling Observer which is fairly typical of the coverage. Other examples include from the whisky industry in The Spirit Industry website and the BBC.

    Typical image used in the whisky coverage.

    Bruach Caoruinn Hydro Scheme: As part of the planning application for the development of the Bruach Caoruinn Hydro Scheme, an archaeological survey was undertaken. This was completed in September 2014 by Jennifer G. Robertson and a copy of the report can be downloaded from here. If you wish to explore the planning application this link to the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park will give you access to the papers.

    Bruach Caorainn Hydropower Scheme Topographical Survey and Archaeological Controlled Topsoil Strip
    Data Structure Report was completed by Guard Archaeology in 2016 and a copy of the report can be found with this link.

    Strathard Community Hydro Fund Since May 2017, Strathard has received community benefit funds from the Bruach Caorainn Hydro Scheme each year. The funds are managed on behalf of the community by the Strathard Community Trust. The amount is index linked, and has risen from under £7,000 in its first year to a value of just over £8,000 in 2022. Payments are received in May each year. In November 2022 the Strathard Community Trust completed a review of the allocation of funds from 2018 to 2022–a copy of the report is available here.