The Trosscahs area is renowned for many ancient families passing through. At Lochend itself Robin Og, Rob Roy MacGregor’s brother and undoubtedly the black sheep, was holed up for a short time with a ‘woman of standing’, Jennie Kay from Balfron…whom he’d kidnapped and forcablely married and for which he was later hung!! The powerful and infamous Clan Campbell  were here and occupied the house and it’s grounds, creating a burial ground in our field in the 18th century…after their bloodiest deeds!! The Chief law officer Campbell of Queensland Australia came to visit us in the 1990’s.

Then there’s the Erskine family who owned most of this area at one point and were Commendators of Inchmaholme Island from the early 1500’s, where Mary Queen of Scot’s hid as a child and which is the resting place of Don Roberto Cunningham-Graham founder of both the labour AND Scottish National Parties. Many more of the Graham Clan are buried in the Port Kirk cemetery, next to the hotel.

Being that we are in the centre of Scotland many clans passed through but if there are any that you’d like to further investigate here are a few links to help you on your way. When we are looking at our family history, or more often, Lochend Houses family tree, Mum and Dad head to the National Records of Scotland registry house, to spend the day. It is also Visit Scotland’s year of History, Heritage and Archaeology so they have interesting leads on their website.

Lets us know if you think we can help your search!








What’s On Locally in August

Hand-picked local events by the Lochend team, based on things we love 😍

IT’s FESTIVAL month!

2-30.8.17 @ 11.15am to 4pm

Wallace Monument, Abbeycraig, Causewayhed, Stirling.

This is the month in 1305 when Wallace was capture and killed. The monument have wonderful, costumed depictions of the many different parts of this famous, historic mans story. Well worth the visit and check the website for the different stories on different days.




Ignition Festival of Motoring @ 10am-6pm

For all the vehicle enthusiasts at Lochend…from F1 to Clkassic cars to Motor bIkes, there are track sessions to be had or just toggle at all things motoring!

Free (for under 8’s)/£27.50/£40


4-28.8.17 almost 24 hours a day!!!

The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Edinburgh.

Internationally recognised as one of the best festivals in the world it would be a shame to not visit whilst your here. Only an hour from Lochend, take the park and ride, and either organise like a military operation (not too much geographical distance between venues!) or do as we did for several years when the children were between the ages of 5 and 12 and roam the streets, watch the street performers and soaking up the atmosphere.

Free to £60!


5-13.8.17 @ 10am to 6pm

The Pittenweem Arts Festival.

This small festival of art and artisans has grown to just the right size. Such a huge array of talent on show and to purchase! And a trip to the beautiful East Neuk of Fife is one we often recommend is your looking for a bit of beach from your Scottish holiday. So a combined day out is highly recommended. Victoria’s personal favourite. Add in the Gardens at Kellie Castle and you’ll have satisfied history, beach and art all in the one day!

Free to £25


18-21.8.17 @ 2pm

Doune The Rabbit Hole.

A boutique music festival that manages a lovely line-up of music, theatre, comedy and spoken word performances. It couldn’t get more local…1 mile up the road!



26.8.17 @ 10am to Midnight

Defender Jam.

Landrovers, music, food and fun from our great pals at Monachyle Mhor….just a fun day out.


Field Sports in our area

We’ve happily joined some of VisitScotland Welcome Schemes, one of which is to welcome people interested in field sports.

Growing up here in the 70’s and 80’s we were bordering on the self sufficient thanks to Dad and the boys, Topher and Nick shooting and Mum and Dad’s gardening expertise. So whilst Lochend is now a peaceful haven for wildlife, the estate next door, Cardross, still has regular shoots. They are organised through Dunmhor Sports. Graham Christie is the man to talk to if this is something you fancy doing on your holiday.

Field sports include fishing and the Lake of Menteith is considered Scotland’s premier trout fishing water. Lots of info on our website.

Or you could try your hand at clay pigeon shooting at Leddard Farm with the always entertaining Gregor and Fergus Woods!

What’s on Locally in July

Hand-picked local events by the Lochend team, based on things we love 😍

28/6-2/7/17, through the day

Edinburgh Film Festival

World renown festival’s in Scotland’s capital kicks off with the Film Festival. Close to Victoria’s heart this is an extravaganza, from documentaries to world premiere’s, most notably, for me, this year Stanley Tucci bring his newest directorial adventure ‘Final Portrait’ starring Geoffrey Rush.

Various Venues all over Edinburgh

From £6 upwards



Doune and Dunblane Show,

Our local agricultural show, akin to the Royal Highland show just not quite as big. Celebrating it’s 70th year.

Just off junction 11 on the M9. Keir roundabout.

£10/£5, under 16’s free



Perth Summer Races, 12-6pm

Come along and enjoy a fine afternoon of jump racing in the height of the Scottish summer.  Sponsored by Mackies Ice Cream and with Champagne bar on site if a flutter and dressing up and gee-gee’s takes your fancy, earth racecourse is a great day out.

Perth Racecourse, Scone Palace Park, Perth.



Callander’s Summerfest, through the day

A mix of many things…from concerts to arts and crafts workshops to guided walks & sports activities and lots more.

Various venues all over Callander

Free to ticketed events.



Kinlochard Family Highland Gathering, 11.45am-5pm

Kinlochard Gathering features Lomond Fly Ball as the main Arena Event. This year there is an under18s piping competition. Pipe band, highland dancers, heavy event demos and audience participation, watery fun on the loch, side shows, stalls and kids events.. Brilliant food and drink in the form of Mhor burgers, home baking with teas and coffee and a licensed bar.

Kilochard Village Hall and field.




Iron Age Gourmet Day, 10.30am-4.30pm

This fabulous facility has inventive workshops and all include talks, tours and campfire dwelling. Today you can sample tasty, nutritious and healthy foods prepared and cooked as our ancestors did.

The Crannog Centre, Loch Tay, Kemore.

£10/£9/£7 family (2+2) £32, prices on events days are ‘a little higher’!!



Pride and Prejudice, Open Air Theatre.

An outdoor performance of an adaptation of her famous novel. At perhaps one of the loveliest dwelling houses in Scotland because Rennie Mackintosh, and his talented team including wife Margaret MacDonald Mackintosh, created the entire environment including furniture.

Hill House, Helensburgh

£15/£10 family £45

The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology

This is VisitScotland’s of ‘History, Heritage and Archaeology’ and for those of you that fancy visiting some special places, I’ll be posting some cracking days out near Lochend.

Stirling Castle.

Our great friends the Makay-Daltons were visiting from London and Pip and Lottie decided a day out at Stirling Castle was in order because the last time they had visited, was when they were ‘wee’. Lottie’s Mum and Dad had got married there, Uncle Topher used to get ‘chanter’ lessons from the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, who lived in the castle barracks until the mid-60’s, and the ‘Carpenter Oak and Woodland’ boys, who rebuilt the fabulous medieval roof of the Great Hall, stayed at the chalets during those 6 months. Grandpa Nairn took a toddling Bunty up to the apex of the skeleton roof in a back pack! This meant I had stories to tell when we got there, so off we went!

It was a perfect sunny day but I didn’t expect to enjoy it just as much as I did and partly that’s down to the teenaged girls leading me on further and further in to the many different and fascinating parts of the castle and it’s long history but also because Historic Scotland have spent a lot of money here and it shows in the vibrancy of the place.

The oldest surviving part is from 1381 but it was originally the site of a chapel in 1100, they built on top of buildings that existed because there wasn’t enough room. Perhaps the King that made the biggest visual impact was James the V. Think it’s fair to say he was all about the swag!

We went to the great hall first…a large party were being shown round by one of the many guides. Following through to the Kings Chambers and the amazing Stirling Heads, they now heave their own fascinating exhibition further round the castle which is really fascinating and interactive.

In the bed chambers a character actor stood with various different implements. We asked him about the sticks….3 versions of the first golf clubs (James V loved the golf although allegedly not very good at it) he then played the 15 string lute for us and then we talked with him about the ornate bed and it’s incredible fabrics….again all about showing off as the deep Tyrian Purple dye that the Romans had discovered by boiling snails! Uber expensive so right up James V street! He even sent a stand-in on his wedding day to Marie de Guise, Mary queen of Scots mother….whit a man! However moving onto the Queens chambers and the (reproduction) tapestries that he commission for his wife are really stunning and we all enjoyed looking for the odd creatures semi-hidden by the weavers. And they were among the first to employ Trompe L’Oeil paint technique in Britain.

Walking the castle wall walk you see where a poor, deluded alchemist in James V employ vowed to fly to France. Off the castle walls he went straight into a pile of cow dung! From here you can also observe the Kings Knot below, now believed to have had connections with King Arthurs round table and then there are the many cannons which still feel ready for action!

In the Castle Exhibition it tells of many stories including that of the a discovered burial site from the 1300’s and have recreated the face of a soldier and tell of his gruesome death.

The most surprising part, for our particular party, was the military exhibitions in what was the barracks for they Argyll and Sutherland Highland regiment. We discovered the beautiful, rebellious, feminist Princess Louise, Queen Victoria’s 6 child, but also Duchess of Argyll…hers is a fascinating story.

It took me by surprise that the many children that were there (it’s school trip time) and both the foreign and British groups are all really engaged, the staff are really well trained and work hard, and it has the most extraordinary range of things to do and to suit all tastes really. It is a buzzing place to visit and I highly recommend it for a day out.


What’s on Locally in June

Hand-picked local events by the Lochend team, based on things we love 😍

2-24/6/17 @ 11am – 7pm, various days

Return to the Ridings
The “Return to the Ridings” is a celebration of the riding of the boundaries that has taken place for centuries with 11 towns in the Scottish Borders using horses for the traditional ride out. The Rough Guide says ‘One of Britains best kept secrets, an equestrian festival that combines the thrills of Pampalona..with the concentrated drinking of Munich’s Oktoberfest’!!! It’s a 2 hour plus drive to the Borders from here but then so is Fort William.

In 11 different towns, from Hawick to Peebles.




Potfest – celebrating ceramics

Potfest ceramic shows – putting public and potters together. Meet the potters, talk pots, and buy direct from the maker.

Scone Palace, Perth.

£5.50 includes access to the gardens


16-19/6/17 @ 7/8am-5pm-ish

BSB-MCE British Superbike Championship

Brings some of the best bike racers in the World back to Knockhill for three days of 180mph wheel-to-wheel action on 16/17/18 June 2017. Knockhill’s twists and turns always produce stunning elbow to elbow action for these 180mph Superbikes. Topher and Cooper will probably be in attendance.

Knockhill Racing circuit in Fife.

From £5-£39


17.6.17 @ 10am-4pm

Classic Car Show in Milingavie

Music food and drink and about 80 vehicles so this is an intimate show rather than sprawling.

Milingavie near Glasgow



22-25/6/17 @ 9am to 7pm

Royal Highland Show

The Royal Highland Show is one of Scotlands most iconic events, showcasing the very best of farming, food and rural life. A great day out for all ages, get up close to the country’s top quality livestock, taste exceptional food and drink and experience rural life at its most vibrant in this is 177th year! Our insider info is if you go after 4pm you can get a reduced ticket on the door!

Ingilston next to Edinburgh Airport.

£19-27 under 15’s go free


28/6/17 @ 8pm


A force of nature and an incredibly talented singer-songwriter, Bristol-based Yola Carter was raised on gospel and is a greatly in-demand singer and writer on the dance scene. She sang in the past with 2 of my favourite collectives, Massive attack and with Chase and Status but less dancey and more Americana on this tour.

Tollbooth, Stirling.



Bluebells down the Bike park

Having had what Ralph, Bunty’s boyfriend, thinks is a drout (and in Scotland that’s no far off it!) we had a down pour last weekend and then everything sprouted, not least these gorgeous seasonal wee flowers. Whilst also pulling weeds up on our monthly maintenance of the nature trail, the sun was being dappled by the beech trees with their luminous leaves and I was forced into getting the camera. Sadly I never quiet to justice to the amazing carpet effect that bluebells bring.

What’s on locally in May

Hand-picked local events by the Lochend team, based on things we love 😍

The Highland Games start in Scotland in May and carry on into September, follow the link for all the listings. Because of our central location it is possible to day trip to a least one a month!!


4-15th May @ various times

‘Off the Page’

‘Off the Page’ A literary festival is now in its 12th year and there is a strong programme which gives everyone the opportunity to hear great authors of non-fiction, fiction and poetry in lots of local community libraries and also in the centre of Stirling. Free and ticketed events throughout. One I’ll definitely be attending is a reading, with music, of James Kelman’s new book ‘The Dirt Roadsters’, at the Tolbooth, Stirling, 7.30pm, £10/8


2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd, 30th May @ Tuesday’s 6.30-8.30pm

‘Say it ain’t sew’

Cross-stitch craft with cool projects and added cocktails. Remember that knitting under the influence of mojitos can lead to serious abuse of wool.

FREE – with materials provided!

Brew-Dog, Stirling

7 Baker Street, Stirling, FK8 1BJ


28th and 29th May @10am to 6pm

‘The Atholl Gathering’

This unrivalled spectacle gives locals and visitors alike a chance to participate in a unique Highland tradition that has persisted for generations. The 2 day event consists of the Highlanders parade on the Saturday followed by the Games on Sunday.

Free/£3/£5/£7. Parking free.


Throughout May From Mon-Fri @ 11am-3.30pm

Gargunnock House Walled Gardens.

Spectacular Azaleas and Rhododendrons in May in beautiful Victorian walled garden.




9th May @ 12noon-1pm

‘Dr Murray Cook, latest discoveries in Stirling archaeology’.

In this VisitScotland’s year of archaeology here is a local romp with Murray Cook who is constantly investigating archaeological sites in and around Stirling. This talk will feature his investigations and discoveries over the last year.


Stirling Smith Art Gallery and Museum


Spring has properly sprung! , The lambs in the surrounding fields are all racing and jumping for joy, the Oyster catchers are trying to distract everybody away from their nest with the ‘oooo I’ve got a broken wing’ trick, The Ospreys are back fishing in the Lake and the fishermen are back fishing in the lake, both very successfully and the rowing boat is out of maintenance and back on the water. And if we have a downpour overnight, Chris is always on hand to bail the boats out before your journey.

Living here really means access to help is only a shout away, which we believe is #scotspirit.

Let us know if you think we have #scotspirit!