More Craigneith Castle

Craigneith Castle lay across the waters of the Rotten Calder from Calderwood Castle to the east of East Kilbride on the Blantyre side of the river, and served as accommodation for servants at Calderwood, which technically precludes its later description as a folly.

Craigneath1960sCraigneith, was in fact a folly castle which was titled Craigneith Castle, also sometimes spelt as Craigneath or Craignith. This folly was built on a range of lofty cliffs known as the Crags of Craigneith on a concave bend of the Rotten Calder Water. On the convex side of this location is a promontory known as the Dee of Calder. Upon this precipice stood Calderwood Castle. Craigneith was built by the Maxwells of Calderwood sometime between 1750 and 1845. It was a two storey, small building with a tower and battlemented parapet. Its purpose was – 1. To provide extensive views from the upper floors across Calderwood Glen (Calderglen), being an extraordinary vantage point; 2. To serve as a picturesque decorative Castle in the landscape which could be seen from many points in the surrounding area; 3. To provide accommodation for some of Calderwood Castle’s servants.

There, dwelt the old, old lady of Craigneith Castle, who would arise each morning between 4:00-5:00 am to cross the river to Calderwood Castle where she would light all 30 fires in the building. She would leave Craigneith Castle, descend the steep cliffs via serpentine paths, through thick foliage, cross the footbridge, ascend the precipice via some steep steps and finally enter Calderwood Castle. Through tempest, rain, gales and the roaring foaming of the murky Calder she would do so every day, all year. She did this all her time there right up to the time of her death.

Pictured  from my own collection of photos is Craigneith Castle around the 1960s. Much of it was still intact at that point. Today though, not much remains. You can read more about Craigneith Castle and see my recent pictures of the ruins in this article

Courtesy of Secret Scotland and excellent research by local historian, Christopher Ladds

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