Parish of Walston

A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885.

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1791-99: Walston
1834-45: Walston

Walston, a parish in the Upper Ward, E Lanarkshire, whose church stands towards the centre, 2 5/8 miles SSW of Dunsyre station, and 5 3/8 NNE of the post-town, Biggar. Containing also the village of Elsricki.e, I is bounded E by Dolphinton, SE- by Biggar, W by Libberton, and NW by Carnwath and Dunsyre; and at its SE corner it just touches the Peeblesshire parishes o Kirkurd and Skirling. Its utmost length, from ENE to WSW, is 3 3/8 miles; its utmost width is 3 miles; and its area is 4366 1/5 acres, of which nearly 5 are water. The ditch-like South Medwin creeps 3½ miles south. westward along all the Dunsyre and Carnwath boundary, and the Mid Ditch or Biggar Burn 2½ miles west-south-westward along most of the south-eastern border, so that the drainage goes partly to the Clyde and partly to the Tweed. Along the South Medwin the surface declines to 660, along Biggar Burn to 820, feet above sea-level; and thence it rises to 1010 feet near Hyndshillend, 1124 near Kingsknowes, 1272 near Borland, and 1689 at Black Mount on the Dolphinton border. The predominant rocks are eruptive, chiefly felspathic porphyry, clinkstone, and greenstone; but sandstone and limestone also occur. The soil in the valleys is partly sandy, partly a brownish earthy loam; whilst that of the hillslopes is more adhesive in character, and partly extremely fertile. Nearly 63 acres are under wood -; 2806 are arable; and the rest is either rough pasture or moorland. Celts, stone coffins, and a bronze tripod have been discovered in the parish; and on the high ground of Cocklaw farm are vestiges of an ancient circular camp. The parish of Walston anciently belonged to the lordship of Bothwell, and followed for three centuries the fortunes of that lordship; and it constituted a barony, consisting of the two lands or designations of Walston and Elgirig or Elsrickle. The name Walston is supposed to have been derived either from Waldef, a brother of the first Earl of Dunbar, or from one or more of some copious wells in the neighbourhood, one of which bears the designation of Siller Well, while another was anciently in some repute for its medicinal properties. The property is mostly divided between the Lockharts of -Lee and Mr Woddrop of Garvald House. Walston is in the presbytery of Biggar and the synod of Lothian and Tweeddale; the living is worth £195. The parish church, built in 1789, and renovated in 1881, contains 145 sittings. There is a Free church at Elsrickle; and Walston public and Elsrickle schools, with respective accommodation for 60 and 64 children, had (1884) an average attendance of 36 and 35, and grants of £32, 2s. and £30, 9s. 6d. Valuation (1860) £2597, (1885) £3363, 3s. Pop. (180l) 383, (1841) 493, (1861) 480, (1871) 425, (1881) 340.—Ord. Sur., sh. 24, 1864.

An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is available, or use the map tab to the right of this page.

Note: This text has been made available using a process of scanning and optical character recognition. Despite manual checking, some typographical errors may remain. Please remember this description dates from the 1880s; names may have changed, administrative divisions will certainly be different and there are known to be occasional errors of fact in the original text, which we have not corrected because we wish to maintain its integrity. This information is provided subject to our standard disclaimer

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