19 July 2016
The Glenfinnan Monument is back to its best this summer, after the National Trust for Scotland completed £170,000 of repairs on the 200-year-old structure.
The Glenfinnan Monument is back to its best this summer, after the National Trust for Scotland completed £170,000 of repairs on the 200-year-old structure. For all the latest history, archaeology and heritage news and opinion, sign up for our free e-newsletter.
The monument which commemorates the 1745 Jacobite rising was in 'desperate need of repair' after decades of wind and water damage were taking their toll.
The Glenfinnan Monument marks the beginning of the 1745 rising. On 19 August 1745, Charles Edward Stuart rallied the Highland Clans, raised his standard, and began a campaign that aimed to secure the Scottish throne for the exiled Stuarts – this ended in a bloody defeat less than a year later at Culloden.
The monument was built in 1815 by Alexander MacDonald of Glenaladale to honour his ancestors and the fallen Jacobites. For 200 years, tourists from all over the world have come to visit the monument, and enjoy the dramatic Highland view, and reflect on the events of the 18th century.
Funding from Historic Environment Scotland, the National Trust for Scotland’s Canadian Foundation and generous individual donors made the restoration project possible.
Work started in April and the monument was covered in scaffolding to allow Masonry & Lime Ltd from Elgin to carry out a wide range of repairs. These included fixing masonry on the monument and boundary wall, replacing lime pointing, renewing the roof, installing a more accessible hatch at the top of the monument and a new handrail to help visitors climb the 62 steps. Historic commemorative plaques were also expertly cleaned, repaired and re-lettered. The landscaping around the monument was also improved.
Property Manager Kirsteen Nielsen said: 'It is great to see the Glenfinnan Monument standing tall and looking fantastic again, just as we approach its 201st birthday. Our summer visitors will be able to get some fabulous pictures of this well-preserved piece of our heritage, while learning more about the Jacobite story.'
As part of the project, new equipment to help the conservation charity monitor the movement of the tower was installed. Laser survey points were put in at the top and the bottom of the 18m high monument. This will provide the team with more accurate information about its ‘lean’ over time. It currently tilts by about 260 millimetres to west.
To find out more about the Glenfinnan Monument, visit the website.
(Images copyright NTS Media Pics)