Drove Road (Period Unassigned)
- Council Stirling
- Parish Killearn
- Former Region Central
- Former District Stirling
- Former County Stirlingshire
NS58SW 11 500 816 to 526 836
(see also NS48SE 20)
Local information (Mr Dickie, Auchineden Farm) was obtained that some, at any rate, of the West Highland droves heading to Falkirk used to make their way by Cameron Muir, a ford on the Carnock Burn, Stockie Muir, and the farm of Ledlewan, thereafter crossing the Blane Water by two fords, respectively near Croy and Ledlewan. Traces of a drove road were accordingly searched for on this line.
A further section of the drove road is probably to be seen in the line of the light-coloured herbage that cuts across NS 50 81. No corresponding mark was found on the strip of moorland separating the Dualt and Auchineden Burns, nor any obvious signs of approaches to a ford on either side of the latter; in particular, the wide, shallow hollow that rises from its right bank towards the Glasgow to Drymen highway (A 809) just E of the thirteenth milestone may well be a natural feature. It is to be noted, however, that this is the lowest point at which the Auchineden Burn could be crossed easily by droves, and also that is just opposite the end of a well-defined stretch of the drove road.
The ground NE of the Glasgow to Drymen highway has been improved, and the stretch of the drove road that traverses it has consequently been enclosed. It leaves the highway 100 yards SE of the thirteenth milestone, being here up to 17 feet wide between its low and rather dilapidated lateral dykes; it shows a little metalling in places and a ditch on its lower side. It runs practically straight NE for over 700 yards, first over a low ridge and then downhill through the enclosures of Ledlewan farm; thereafter, debouching from the E corner of a small open space, it descends steeply to the N end of the farmyard. That this stretch must have been out of use for something like a century is suggested by the presence of a mature Scots pine, growing in the middle of the roadway. Below the farm the steepness of the gradient has been eased by quite extensive rock-cutting, but this may well have been done as farm improvement as this part of the drove road, which is up to 25 feet wide, is also the way of access to the farm.
On reaching the bottom of the slope below Ledlewan, the drove road, now marked by a double row hedge-timber, pursues a less than direct but generally easterly course across the haugh to the Blane Water at NS 518 832. The footpath leading from the river to Lettremill, the by-road thence to Dumgoyne level-crossing, and the double hedges running from the railway to the Glasgow to Aberfoyle highway (A81) just S of Baptiston evidently mark a further extension of the drove road, bringing it to the edge of the moors above Killearn and Ballikinrain; and a road is in fact shown along this line on Grassom's map of 1817.
RCAHMS 1963, visited 3 July 1958