Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Anwoth Old Kirk, Vale of Fleet, Dumfries and Galloway.


Anwoth Old Kirk’s main claim is that it was one of the locations for the original version of the cult movie The Wicker Man (1973) and most people will recognise the scull and crossbones on the tomb just inside what is now a ruined church building. But there’s more to the church than a famous film location.
 
Looking down into Gatehouse of Fleet.

Approaching the Rutherford Monument.

Looking across to the Shire. 

Lying just a mile west of Gatehouse of Fleet where you can park your vehicle from which you can walk to Anwoth by road or take my  my suggestion and approach it via the 55 foot high granite obelisk erected in 1842 which offers a great view of the Water of Fleet and across the sea to the Wigtown/Whithorn peninsular.
 
The inscription on the monument. 

The Rutherford Monument. 



The Cairn.
The earliest plaque.
Start this walk turning left out of the car park and cross the bridge over the River Fleet, its here you can make your choice road or path. For a beautiful walk up to monument continue along the road until you see the sign for the footpath to Anwoth follow the way marked path and then take the marked detour to the monument[1]    

Approaching the Old Kirk.
The monument was erected to commemorate Anwoth’s most famous inhabitant the Rev. Samuel Rutherford who was a minister at the old kirk from 1627 until 1636. You pass two other features on the hill on your way down to Anwoth and the old graveyard. The first is the cairn erected in 2000 in recognition of the work of the ministers of Anwoth and Girthon listing all their names since the reformation in 1560 and the second is the trig point. Leave these behind you and you will come to the focal point of this wee ramble The Old Kirk at Anwoth, in use until 1825 but now is a ruin, albeit an interesting one and well worth the visit.
 
The Old Kirk Anwoth. 


[1] For full details of the route I would suggest you consult the wee guide book Dumfries and Galloway 40 Coast and Country Walks by J Fallis published by Pocket Mountains Ltd.