The lands of Eglinton were held by the Montgomerie family for many centuries. As a reward for service to King James 1V, they were granted the title Earls of Eglinton in the 16th century. At the end of the 18th century Hugh, the 12th Earl, decided he needed a new house and this was finished in 1802. It was called a castle though it never had any defensive purpose. The family’s fortunes later declined and the castle was abandoned and all that remains today is one tower and fragments of wall.
Archibald, 13th Earl of Eglinton wanted to recognise Queen Victoria’s coming to the throne so arranged a medieval style Tournament where as many as 100,000 attended. From the ruin we walked down to the Lugton Water which we crossed and followed the path beside the loch eventually walking through dark wood and back to the Visitor Centre.
It was a pity that it was rather wet and muddy underfoot but it didn’t spoil our enjoyment of the walk. We will be a little more adventurous for our next walk!
Although a bit damp underfoot in places, there were signs of Spring all around and there were plenty of families out enjoying some fresh air before returning to school after the Easter break
This was a fairly short and easy walk to get our season underway and we look forward to more of our group joining us for future walks. New walkers would be most welcome..