The Wallace Stone

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Getting There

From Dunblane, head up the Glen Road for nearly a mile, turning left up the Sheriffmuir Road and all the way on till you reach the pub near the T-junction another couple of miles on. Go past the pub for a quarter of a mile, then head onto the moors. The stone can be seen a hundred yards in front of you.

I am not one for big Hollywood Blockbusters, although some are quite good. But I must admit that I did like Braveheart with Mel Gibson. I know that historically it is a bit ‘dodgy’, but it is a good romp and despite me being ‘English’ (well Canadian) I was rooting for the Scots!

I happened to find myself in ‘Braveheart country’ this week, on one of my many trips to see my mate Paul who lives in a little village near Stirling in the highlands. Paul thought that I may be interested in the ‘Wallace Stone’, reportedly the mustering place of William Wallace and his army in 1297 prior to the battle of Stirlng bridge. There are even several marks on the stone and legend says that Wallace used this stone for sharpening his sword!

The stone is in an amazing location, miles from anywhere with the magnificent backdrop of the Ochill mountains behind. Our ancestors certainly must have appreciated the location – it is simply superb!

This is one of 5 stannding stones which were originally in a straight line, although the others are on their side now and can be difficult to find when the heather is deep. We visited the others, but this one took my eye.

There are some ‘cup and ring’ carvings nearby, and a lost stone circle which we didn’t find – but I was happy with the Wallace stone. And if you close your eyes and let your imagination run free, you can almost see William Wallace and his army meeting here some seven hundred years ago before going to battle in the valley far below. And if you REALLY let your imagination run free, you can see Wallace sharpening his great sword across this superb standing stone!

More information is available here.

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32 thoughts on “The Wallace Stone

  1. Such lovely country up there, James! Looks like someone is getting some hay in the background. I hope you guys are well. πŸ˜ŽπŸ‡¬πŸ‡§

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  3. Hello James, I really enjoyed this post. I’m studying to be a medieval historian and that era is my favourite. I may even be doing a medieval Scottish history module next year so this is of particular interest. Yes, Braveheart is inaccurate to say the least, but it’s a good story anyway, and full of atmosphere. The Wallace stone looks amazing, and I’d love to see it one day. Thanks for sharing.

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    • Hi Alli, thanks for commenting and I am glad that you enjoyed this post. I would love to be a medieval historian, I hated history at school but that was probably due to our teacher who had absolutely no interest in the subject. It is only since I got older that I developed a passion. Scotland is breathing, if you haven’t been there you must go..and a visit to the Wallace Stone is a necessity. It is in a wild, stunning location..Just beautiful.

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      • Hi James, nice to meet a fellow enthusiast and walker! I hated history at school too for the exact same reason as you. It was all so dry and boring back then. So it’s been later in life I’ve come to medieval history and fallen for it in a big way, discovering that it’s anything but dull and boring. I must get up to Scotland if I do this module next year – I’ll have to anyway because the tutorials are in Dundee. I doubt I’d be able to take any pictures anywhere near as stunning as yours. They’re truly amazing. Looking forward to following your blog. πŸ™‚

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      • Goodness, I’m planning on moving up to the York area as soon as possible, as I’m hoping to do an MA in medieval studies there. York is my favourite place, next to Northumberland, where I’m planning to end up living in a castle (not so outlandish an ambition – you can buy restored pele towers, or renovate them yourself). You’ve got plenty of breath-taking scenery to photograph up there!

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      • Wow, it’s your favourite too? Something else we have in common! I’ve wanted to live there as long as I can remember, and now I’ve got an excuse. It’s dripping in medieval history and has one of the foremost centres of medieval studies in Europe. I adore the place, and can’t wait to get up there. You’re so lucky being up there now. πŸ™‚

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      • I want to go to Towton next time I’m up as I love the Wars of the Roses too and I haven’t been there. I’ve been to Bosworth and the RIII Visitor Centre in Leicester is superb. Middleham is gorgeous, and I also love Riveaulx Abbey – as you rightly say, a million other places. πŸ™‚

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      • When I first visited Towten it was 25 years ago, no one had heard of it and you had the place to yourself. Then the BBC broadcast ‘Blood Red Roses’, and now the place is heaving – quite touristy. At first we could get down to Cock beck and see the burial mounds and the ‘bridge of bodies’ site, but now (unfortunately) it is off limits. Still worth a visit though πŸ™‚

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      • Really? That’s a shame. I’ll still have to at least see the place though. On 27th, I’m going on an 8-mile walk with the Battlefield Trust around the site of the battle of Mortimer’s Cross, which is the least well documented of the whole WoRs era. Should be fascinating, and at least it won’t be touristy! πŸ™‚

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      • I haven’t been there. When I first visited Towton it was in the dark and it a blizzard (very appropriate). I had never heard of it but my friend was a buff and he briefly told me about it. Later on in The Crooked Billett he related the story in full. It was so atmospheric, it left a lasting impression on me.I have been back several times, but nothing quite beat that first one

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      • I’m not surprised, especially if you went there in a blizzard – eerie. Just learning about Towton did that to me too. And how eerie that you went there in a blizzard. Mortimer’s Cross is a much lesser known battle but it was pivotal in WoRs. Owen Tudor died there for one thing. But the site has only just got funding to do a major excavation, and they’re hoping to confirm the suspected location of the battle, so I’m looking forward to learning something more about it. I’ll write a post on what I learn. Good to hear you learned the story in a pub! Best way. The walk takes in a good pub, apparently! πŸ™‚

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      • Thanks for the steer. I didn’t know about that one. Sounds fascinating. Bolton and Richmond are on my list, and if the weather permits I’ll be flying over one of my favourite castles tomorrow, Goodrich in Ross on Wye. πŸ™‚

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