Author Archives: JudH

Brake Stanes at New Mill

Along the bottom of the old Newpark School wall that runs from Hepburn Gardens down the steep hill to New Mill there are periodically spaced stones that stick out from the wall.  The sleuthing of the On at Fife Archives History Detective has identified these stones as rare examples of Brake Stanes.

It is thought that Brake Stanes were used to rest the wheel of a horse-drawn cart upon when transporting heavy loads up and down inclines thereby preventing the cart from rolling down the hill. 

Poem From the Past Found in ‘Forgotten Book’

Lade Braes – Autumn by Clement Bryce Gunn 1894

Alas for the happy harvest fields
And the pleasure now gone for aye,
And the friends of yore now seen no more
On the bonnie bright Summer day;
And the laughing breeze swept through the trees,
And the corn heaps kissed as it went,
Then on careered and the weary cheered
With the fragrance the fields had lent.

And merrily trickled th’ silver burn,
And how gaily the long corn waved
And the gentle beams in glowing streams
With gold liquid the full ears laved
And the winds still sweep and dews still weep
For the death of the Autumn day,
While weary and worn alone I mourn
For the old time now gone away.

And still they bury the golden seed
And then reap it in golden grain,
But the wild oats sown are quickly grown
And yield but wild harvest again;
And many one sighs and broken dies
For the chances of youth long lost
And seedtime gone; but mem'ry alone
Aye reminds of the bitter cost.

Bryce Gunn, C. (1894). Lays of St Andrews. St Andrews. Joseph Cook & Son. pg55-56

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We’ve gone live!

Welcome to Our site is now live and invites you to browse through pages of historic and environmental information relating to the Lade Braes, a medieval mill lade that meanders from west to east through the ancient city of St Andrews, Scotland.

This site was initially developed to bring people closer to the history and usage of the mills and mill lade but has since grown to encompass all aspects of the Lade Braes; the history, the walk, the flora and the fauna.

Those visiting this site are invited to contribute suggestions, information and images to further expand this growing resource. Please get in touch by using the contact form. We look forward to reading your comments and suggestions.

We would like to thank The St. Andrews Preservation Trust, The National Library of Scotland and St Andrews University Library Archive, where much of our research relating to the Lade Braes was sourced.