Beecraigs Loch

Beecraigs Loch is a small water body located 2 miles (3 km) south of Linlithgow in the Bathgate Hills. Now surrounded by trees, the loch extends to 8 ha (20 acres) and contains 372 million litres (82 million gallons) of water. It was built as a reservoir between 1914-18 by German prisoners-of-war, who constructed an embankment dam from stone and clay across the Riccarton Burn. The stone was quarried from the Riccarton Hills and brought to the site of the dam using a winch-powered railway. This dam and its associated outlet tower lie at the eastern side of the loch. The reservoir provided drinking water to the local population until 1972, when it was decommissioned. Beecraigs was taken over by West Lothian District Council, who used its old filter beds to support a fish hatchery. It was incorporated into Beecraigs Country Park in 1980. The loch has provided a popular recreational fishery since 1922, with anglers taking native brown trout that spread into the loch from the Riccarton Burn, together with sterile rainbow trout bred at the park's own fish farm.

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