West Dron Hill, Bridge of Earn, Perthshire

Cup-and-Ring Stone:  OS Grid Reference – NO 11845 15169

Getting Here

West Dron’s petroglyph

In the middle of Bridge of Earn village, take the Heughfield Road until, ⅓-mile on you hit the T-junction.  Turn left along Forgandenny Road and go along the curvaceous road for just over a mile where you need to keep your eyes peeled for the small left turn that takes you up the dead straight road.  At the top, turn left at the junction and go ⅔-mile, turning right at the next junction until after 400 yards you reach the houses on your right.  Go up the footpath opposite the houses (south) until, after nearly 400 yards, it splits.  Bear right and zigzag up the track for nearly a mile till you reach a large opening in the forest.  40 yards up the slope to your left is the stone—at last!

Archaeology & History

After the trail to get here, you might not be overly impressed by what you see – and it’s nothing special to look at to be honest.  But its location is a good one: reasonably high up on a sloping plateau which would have given good views were it not for the surrounding forestry plantations.  The only literary description of the site was the brief one in Discovery & Excavation Scotland, shortly after being rediscovered.  Mrs Johnson (1960) wrote:

Close-up of the carving

“A cup-marked stone was found by Mr. J. R. Morrison on the N side of West Dron hill.  The stone measures approx. 4ft long by 1ft 9in broad.

There are 17 cup-marks: five of which have channels, and two of which are joined in the form of a dumb-bell.  The stone lies with its longer axis NE-SW, and its broad face uppermost.”

Its seeming isolation is a peculiarity that I don’t buy.  Other carvings are going to be in the locale, probably on the same north- or north-east facing ridges – but due to the dense forestry, any other petroglyphs will remain hidden for quite some time…

References:

  1. Johnson, M., “Dron, Perthshire,” in Discovery & Excavation Scotland, SRG 1960.

Acknowledgements:  Huge thanks to Theresa Hughes for the use of her photos of this carving.

© Paul BennettThe Northern Antiquarian

 

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  56.320681, -3.426903 West Dron