Public Wells & Fountains (16) Slamannan

Illus: 1862 Ordnance Survey Map (National Library of Scotland).

St. Laurence’s Well

A small spring well in the village of Slamannan – of considerable antiquity.   Nothing is known about it further than that it is supposed to take its name from St Laurence, to which the church is dedicated.  It is classed as a Holy Well.”

The RCAHMS visited the site in 1953 and noted that it had been covered with a concrete and iron manhole and had been made part of the village’s sewerage system!

(NS 8575 7324)

High St. Laurence Well

A small spring well a little to the south-east of St Lawrence’s Well and of more recent origin.  It stands on rather higher   ground than the former which has given to it the term “high.”  It is not classed as a Holy Well


It is mentioned in the minister’s account of the parish in 1793 for the Statistical Account.  It had been filled in by 1953.

(NS 8579 7315).

A report of 1893 states that at both of the wells of St Lawrence – No 1 and No 2 – the pumps had been destroyed by the frost and it would take a sum of £6 each to replace them and put them in good order.  The area of the two wells was known as “the Lowrie” and it was here that the bleachfield lay.

Birnie Well

Birns are the hard stems of heather that remain after it is burnt and the name refers to the open heathland in the area to the south of the Avon (Reid 2009, 190).  It was evidently a natural spring but now forms part of a drainage channel.

(NS 8374 7345)

Black Loch Well

A report for the Eastern District of Stirling County Council in 1893 found that the well situated at the side of the Black Loch was in a very unsatisfactory condition on account of the water not being properly filtered from the loch.  It was calculated that the sum of £20 was required to improve the well and make the necessary filters.

Limerigg – (NS8605 7037)

Bog Well

Mentioned in 1781 (Reid 2009, 190).  The well lay off the Beam road between Slamannan and Bonnybridge.


The two dip wells at Brownrigg having been found perfectly unsuitable both as regards structure and water supply, the proprietors of the houses must have intimation that the local authority intend closing these wells

(Falkirk Herald 15 April 1893, 6).

(NS 8475 7279)

Castlehill Well

This well was located on the north side of the road opposite to Castlehill Farm. 

A new pump is also required for this well and owing to the ill-usage to which this pump well has been subjected, it will be necessary to have it kept locked, and that the people using it provide themselves with keys.  This will also involve an outlay of six pounds”  

(Falkirk Herald 15 April 1893, 6).

It is probably the same as the Bank Street Well which was only opened up for an hour each evening in 1889 (Falkirk Herald 6 July 1889, 6).

 (NS 8540 7301)

Pirnie Lodge Well

The hamlet of Pirnie Lodge had three miners’ rows (Slopside and Arnloss) served by a well located on the west bank of a stream, as well as four private houses each with their own wells.  It was no wonder that the colliers resorted to the adjacent public house for a drink.  An inspection in 1893 found:

The retaining wall on the burnside having fallen into the stream, obstructs the flow of the water, and causes it to run into the well.  The trustees of the Arnloss estate will be called upon to repair this wall.  The mason work of the well is also in a dilapidated condition, and will take the sum of two pounds to repair it

(Falkirk Herald 15 April 1893, 6).

(NS 8688 7283)

Quarry Well

This well is situated near to Drumclair Row.  There is nothing of a mineral nature in its water though it is much frequented by the inhabitants of the district for the purity of its waters.”  


It stood at the western end of the mining village adjacent to a quarry but is now lost.

(NS 8647 7159)

G.B. Bailey, 2022