Burgh Boundary Stones of Helensburgh

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Burgh Boundary Stones of Helensburgh – Transcription of Town Council minutes for 27 July 1833

At Helensburgh the twenty-seventh day of July eighteen hundred and thirty-three, at eight o'clock AM being the time fixed for ascertaining and going along the Boundary lines of the Burgh specified in the charter and fixing in proper places Boundary stones in order that the Boundaries may be known in time coming.

There appeared and joined in the Procession:
Messrs Robert MacLellan and Peter MacLellan Ground Surveyors on behalf of Sir James Colquhoun of Luss Barlonet, the superior of the Burgh and Proprietor of the lands adjoining, except at the Eastern Boundary or Duke's Road.

Parties present


James Smith Esquire Provost along with Bailllies James Bain and James Benzie, John MacMurrich a Councillor and Duncan Turner Clerk to the Burgh.
Messrs Robert MacAuslane formerly farmer in Stuck
John MacNaught Gardener at Rockbank
Robert Colquhoun Feuar
Robert Cochran Feuar, all of whom were examined as witnesses and concurred in identifying as they went along the Boundary lines specified in the Charter and large stones of wrought freestone having BB cut thereon were placed at proper places and distances to show the Boundaries.

There were also present

  • Messrs John Walker
  • John Hunter
  • Robert Glen
  • James Colquhoun
  • Malcolm MacGregor
  • Peter Macfarlane
    – all feuars
  • Messrs Henry Colquhoun Junr
  • John Macfarlane Junr
  • James MacLure Carter
  • James Lindsay Grocer
  • Duncan MacKinnon
  • John Bain Shoemaker
  • Andrew MacLellan, son of Robert MacLellan, Land Surveyor
  • Daniel MacLeod, Tailor
  • William Bain, Porter
  • Robert Taylor, Joiner
  • James Buchanan, Wright
  • Archibald Colquhoun Wright
  • Robert and John his sons
  • John Batteson Teacher
  • Lorne Campbell Reid
  • Robert and Malcolm Walker, sons of John
  • Walter Bain Wright. -

39 Millig Street stone 01Besides a great many other young and middle aged persons to witness the proceedings.

1. The parties commenced at and proceeded from Sinclair Street, now the new line of Road to Lochlomond, eastward along the line of the old march hedge of Milligs Farm and placed the first stone at "Craigknow" twelve feet to the west of the third street leading up west of the Mill Burn.

2. The next stone was placed Laigh on the west side of the March dyke between Milligs and Stuckleckie farms, two feet to the west of the fifth Street from the Burn.

3. The third stone was placed on the north side of the upper termination of the said march dyke, being two hundred and seventy-nine feet west of the Southwest corner of the large new lodging presently possessed by Captain Johnston

4. The next stone was placed on the north side of the continuation eastward of the dyke below the grounds formerly called the ward, at the present hedge running down to the public high way along the shore.

5. Continuing eastward the next stone was placed on the upper side of the Dyke where it joins the old Road leading from Clyde to Lochlomond commonly called the Duke's Road.

6. Then proceeding southward along the Duke's road the next stone was placed on the west side of that road six hundred and seventy-eight feet from a stone to be fixed at the east end of the house known as Parkend House, fronting the High Road.

7. The next stone placed at the east gable of Parkend House six hundred and seventy-eight feet from the stone last put in.

8. Then crossing the road and proceeding southward the last stone in the eastern lines was placed in the March Dyke bounding the lands of Craigendoran belonging to Mr Dennistoun near to the seashore.

9. The parties present then proceeded along the public road from the eastern extremity of the Burgh, to the westmost Boundary at the Bridge opposite the property now of Mr Gemmill, and placed the first stone of the western Boundary on the South side of the Bridge ten and a half feet from the Stone to the Centre of the arch.

39 Millig Street stone 03Then proceeding northward along the side of the Burn of Glennan, and Messrs. Robert Colquhoun and Robert Cochrane feuars and old men being examined on the ground, they stated that the late Mr Moses Gardner, the former proprietor of Mr Gemmill's property has altered the course of the Burn adjoining to that property, and this appearing to be obvious also from the old plan of the Burgh produced, the Court reserved till a future day to have the present extent of the alteration ascertained by measurements and to place Boundary Stones so as to mark the grounds actually contained in the Charter. The witnesses likewise stated that the course of the Burn had not been altered in any other place.

10. Proceeding therefore along the Burn northward, the next stone was placed on the north side of Prince's Street, twenty-four feet nine inches east of the centre of the Burn (which centre is the boundary at the present wooden bridge).

11. The next stone was placed within the limits of Mr Russell's enclosed feu, at the north-west extremity of this western line of boundary, on the east side of the Burn ten and a half feet from John Macauslane's Dyke to the east and fourteen feet from that dyke to the boundary, viz the middle of the Burn.

12. Now proceeding eastward along the line of the old march fence of the two Milligs and Glennan, which was identified by the said Robert Colquhoun and Robert Macauslane, the next stone was placed on the west side of John Street at the eastmost gable of John Macauslane's house.

13. Following the said old line of march eastward, the next stone was placed on the east side of Colquhoun Street, along the west side wall of Robert Lennox's tenement, ninety feet and one half from the stone so placed to the stone at the northwest corner of King Street.

14. And to complete the whole, the last stone was placed at the end of the old hedge on the west side of Sinclair Street (now the new line of road to Lochlomond, one foot in off the street.

There was a regatta at Helensburgh on the occasion attended by the Northern Yacht Club, and James Smith Esquire the Provost, with his cutter the Amethyst won the cup presented by Sir Michael Shaw Stewart Baronet.

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burgh boundary stone in garrawy glen 01Postscript

Only 2 burgh boundary stones are known today. One is in Garrawy Glen, probably on its original location. The other is in the garden of the house at 39 Millig Street – probably not on its original location! Furthermore the 2 stones differ from one another in several respects, such as size, shape and engraving. In particular the one at 39 Millig Street has the date 1816 clearly engraved on its top, whereas the minutes referred to in the article above lists the boundary stones in 1833. It seems quite possible therefore that boundary stones were put up more than once.

Stewart Noble
January 2024