Please title this page. (tour)

(This was apparently written by the Welshs for a reunion, or gathering of the Brae branch of the Dinwoodie family. It give a detailed tour of the old Dinwoodie estate, and surrounding area. If you are ever in the area, you can use it for a self guided tour.)


Dinwoodies of the Brae, Johnstone Parish.


Start at Dinwoodie Lodge Hotel, which is about 4 miles north of


From there walk a short distance South on the old narrow roadway,

and see the 'Tollhouse". Continue further South to the farm,

Dinwoodic Green. This road, now quite derelict was the "toll

road", being built in the early days of stage-coaching. At Din-

woodie Green there was an inn, a staring post, and a post-box.

Returning to the Hotel, carry on beyond it and trace the toll-road

northwards. About 200 yards along this road there is a narrow

road to the right. Turn into this road and locate "Dinwoodie

Mains" farm; when there were several farms on an estate, the

moot important one is called the Mains; normally this would be the

farm nearest to the castle, mansion, or "big house"


Before going any further, notice the mound in the field on the

left; this is all that is left of the last "Dinwoodie castle'

The building which stood on this site would be a tall square

tower, with its entrance door on the first floor. It was built

very early in the 17th century by a Maxwell, 1611, probably the

son of Jean Dinwoodie, and Robert Maxwell; this is when and how

the lands of Dinwoodic passed out of the hands of the Dinwoodie


An act of the Scottish parliament early in the 17th cen-.

-tury decreed that all land owners in the border counties of

Scotland and England must build a strong tower or other strong

building in which their tenants could take refuge in times of

raids. It would be very interesting to excavate this tell.

Go back along the toll road to the north for about a mile, then

clamber up across the hill on your left; this brings you to

Dalamakethar camp. Notice that a roadway once ran through the Camp

in a north-south direction; this is the old Roman road dating from

about 100 A.D. The status of this site has not been settled; the

shape is very non-Roman. It was probably occupied by the invading

Norse (or Angles, or ???)

Back to the toll road; further north lies the boundary of Dinwoodie

(Appelgarth), and Wamphrey parish. There is a boundry stone in a

field on the right.

Now back to the road leading to Dinwoodie Mains. There was once a

village here but all that remains is the old water pump. carry

on along this road and see the heraldic stone above the door of the

farm; this stone came from above the doorway of Dinwoodie castle;

It depicts the legendary origin of the name Dinwiddie; this legend

must have been known in the early 17th century.

Now the going gets rough. Continue along the road in an easterly

direction for some considerable distance. Eventually Broomhill

Farm is reached. Carry on to Shawside. On the right is a very old quarry.

On the left is a piece of marshy ground, beyond which is a low

gentle hill called "langerhallis hill"; that is the hill of the

long hall; this would indicate that there was a Norse settle-

ment here. Excavations required! Ahead is Dinwoodie hill also

called Broomhill. Follow the road round to the right, well past

the sheepfold, then out off to the left and climb the hill; it,

would be more correct to ask the farmer for permission to go up the

hill. At the very top of the hill is an ancient circular fort or

camp in which the hut sites can still be seen; notice the suberb

views. A short distance down the hill on the East is a very, very

old quarry, and a spring.

Return a short distance down the hill and locate another camp; this

old fort (about 100 A.D.) is a Promontary fort in which the steep

side of the hill serves as a defence. Further down the field it was

once possible to trace the outlines of Dinwoodie graveyard and the Chapel.

These may be no longer visible as this area has for sometime now been under

the plough. At the point where the south-west corner of the church-

yard was, there is a spot marked on the maps and called "Kirkstyle

Knowe"; there is nothing to see now; but the implication is clear

that once there was a cross standing at this point. Cf-Ruthwell Cross.

Continue down the hill towards the conifer woods and find the third

camp. This is a large clicalar camp standing into the wood and

sitting astride the roadway; the "walls" are only a matter of 6 ins.

or so and may be elusive to find; features that could be seen in 1968

include a number of hut-sites.

Before leaving Dinwoodie hill, cross to the top of the small hill

opposite the sheepfold; the aerial photographs of this area show

very complex structures which can no longer be seen on the surface;

it is possible to make out a good case for an early castle having

once stood here.

If you wish, follow the road as it winds away to the east to the

village of Sibbaldbie. Otherwise, back to the hotel.

Find your way to Applegarth churchyard. Enter, and walk round to

the left of the church. Here, in a sheltered part close to the wall

of the church you will find a famous Dinwoodie tombstone; this is

the stone in memory of James Dinwoodie of Newbigging, who died in

1745; this stone has the "tete coupee".

From the hotel find your way to Johnstone churchyard; not to the

modern cemetry. This churcyard has a high proportion of Brae head-

stones, and most are in very good condition. From here find your way

to the Brae farm. I cannot guide you there; you must enquire locally.

I have never been in the farmhouse; could you talk your way in?

The farm has been out of the Dinwoodie family since about 1916.

I have been told that the family crest was carved above the mantel-

piece. If you do get there and get inside, I should be very glad

to have your observations. Your line lived here from away far, far


Jean Dinwoodie Welsh

Adam Welsh