Leadhills

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Leadhills
Leadhills is located in South Lanarkshire
Leadhills
Leadhills
 Leadhills shown within South Lanarkshire
Population 315 
OS grid reference NS885150
Council area South Lanarkshire
Lieutenancy area Lanarkshire
Country Scotland
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Biggar
Postcode district ML12
Police Scottish
Fire Scottish
Ambulance Scottish
EU Parliament Scotland
UK Parliament Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale
Scottish Parliament Clydesdale
List of places
UK
Scotland

Coordinates: 55°24′58″N 3°45′46″W / 55.4162°N 3.7629°W / 55.4162; -3.7629

Hillend Summit, Glengonnar Station, 1498 feet ASL.
Green pyromorphite microcrystals cover the vuggy, quartz-rich matrix. Seams of tiny cerussite crystals and crusts of contrasting, powder-blue caledonite round out this very rich lead ore specimen from an old Leadhills mine. Size: 7.5 x 5.4 x 3.2 cm.
Glengonnar Water near Leadhills

Leadhills is a village in South Lanarkshire, Scotland, 5¾ miles WSW of Elvanfoot. Population (1901) 835. Originally known as Waterhead,[1] It is the second highest village in Scotland at an average hight of 1,460 feet (450 m) above sea-level, near the source of Glengonnar Water, an affluent of the River Clyde.

Local attractions[edit]

The Leadhills Miners' Library, founded in 1741 and also known as the Allan Ramsay Library, or The Leadhills Reading Society, houses an extensive antiquarian book collection, local relics, mining records and minerals. The library is the oldest subscription library in Britain and is of significant historical and geological importance. The library is open from May to September on weekends and bank holidays, between 2pm and 4 pm.

The Grouse Moors cover in excess of 11,000 acres (45 km2) around Leadhills and are considered to be amongst the finest in Scotland.

Leadhills Golf Course is the highest in Scotland. This nine hole course offers considerable challenge as the winds can be high and unpredictable as they are channelled between the hills.

The Grave of John Taylor is also available to visit in the cemetery. Reputed to be 137 years of age at the time of his death, John Taylor's grave (shared with his son, Robert) even attracted the attention of the BBC.

The Scots Mining Company House was built in 1736 for James Stirling, the managing agent of the Scots Mining Company. It is attributed to the architect William Adam, and is now a category A listed building.[2]

The Leadhills & Wanlockhead Railway runs at weekends only, and at Christmas sees the Santa Express, which includes a ride on the train, a visit to Santa down the Lead mine, and a story read by Mrs Kringle in the Museum of Lead Mining, Wanlockhead. The Elvanfoot railway station was on the Caledonian Railway main line from Glasgow to the south. A branch from there ran through Leadhills to Wanlockhead and operated until 1939. Part of the route has been reused by the Leadhills & Wanlockhead Railway. The railway is 1,498 feet (457 m) above sea level.

Business[edit]

Leadhills is host to a number of small local businesses ranging from the Leadhills Mining Bear Company, Bear-ly Reminiscent, which sells bears and dolls dressed as miners; Sanquhar Knitwear, which sells clothing inspired by the world-famous Sanquhar knitting pattern; and The Leadhills Jam Factory, which sells delicious Leadhills made jams. Other items available are stained glass windows, garden ornaments, jewellery, postcards and hand-made cards. Many of these items are available at the Leadhills Craft fair, which often runs over a weekend at Christmas, and Doors Open Day, which occurs across the Lanark area.

Lodging[edit]

Leadhills has numerous holiday homes available to rent for short periods of time, as well at a local Motel; The Hopetoun Arms (Also the local pub); and the B&B, which are situated on Main Street and Ramsay Road.

Lead mining[edit]

Lead and silver have been mined here and at Wanlockhead, 1½ miles south west, for many centuries, according to some authorities even in Roman days. Gold was discovered in the reign of James IV, but though it is said then to have provided employment for 300 persons, its mining has long ceased to be profitable.

The minerals lanarkite, leadhillite, caledonite, susannite, plattnerite, scotlandite, macphersonite, chenite and mattheddleite were first found at Leadhills.[3]

Cemetery[edit]

The cemetery at the northeast of the village features an unusual tablestone inscription (next to the southern wall) detailing almost as an afterthought the age of one hundred and thirty seven years as being the age at death of the lair owner's father.

Notable residents[edit]

Allan Ramsay, the poet, and William Symington (1763–1831), one of the earliest adaptors of the steam engine to the purposes of navigation, were born at Leadhills.

Climate[edit]

As with the rest of the British Isles, Leadhills experiences a maritime climate with cool summers and mild winters. In terms of the local climate profile, given its elevated position and latitude, Leadhills is amongst the coldest places in the British Isles. In fact, according to the most recent 30 year climate period of 1981-2010 Leadhills is the second coldest village in the UK (of those with weather stations) with an annual mean temperature of 6.76 °C (44.17 °F) making it slightly colder than the commonly regarded coldest settlement of Braemar, which had an annual average temperature of 6.81 °C (44.26 °F) in this period.[4] However, Leadhills' slightly more exposed and elevated location than Braemar results in absolute minima being higher than one might expect - the December absolute minimum of −15.0 °C (5.0 °F)[5] compares favourably to usually milder Glasgow Airport's absolute minimum of −20.0 °C (−4.0 °F).[6]

Climate data for Leadhills, 393m asl, 1971–2000, Extremes 1960-
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 10.9
(51.6)
13.2
(55.8)
17.2
(63)
23.8
(74.8)
26.8
(80.2)
28.2
(82.8)
28.2
(82.8)
28.5
(83.3)
24.8
(76.6)
20.6
(69.1)
13.5
(56.3)
12.8
(55)
28.5
(83.3)
Average high °C (°F) 3.8
(38.8)
4.3
(39.7)
6.2
(43.2)
9.2
(48.6)
13.0
(55.4)
15.1
(59.2)
17.1
(62.8)
16.6
(61.9)
13.5
(56.3)
10.1
(50.2)
6.3
(43.3)
4.7
(40.5)
9.99
(49.99)
Average low °C (°F) −1.4
(29.5)
−1.2
(29.8)
−0.2
(31.6)
0.8
(33.4)
3.3
(37.9)
6.1
(43)
8.5
(47.3)
8.1
(46.6)
6.3
(43.3)
3.7
(38.7)
0.6
(33.1)
−0.5
(31.1)
2.84
(37.11)
Record low °C (°F) −14.1
(6.6)
−14
(7)
−15
(5)
−9.4
(15.1)
−6.8
(19.8)
−3.1
(26.4)
0.0
(32)
−1.1
(30)
−3.4
(25.9)
−7.4
(18.7)
−9.5
(14.9)
−15
(5)
−15
(5)
Precipitation mm (inches) 204.69
(8.0587)
145.07
(5.7114)
165.11
(6.5004)
99.16
(3.9039)
96.56
(3.8016)
94.4
(3.717)
105.95
(4.1713)
123.05
(4.8445)
151.96
(5.9827)
187.87
(7.3965)
179.07
(7.05)
196.77
(7.7469)
1,741.59
(68.5665)
Source: Royal Dutch Meteorological Institute/KNMI[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "Scots Mining Company House". Historic Scotland. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  3. ^ Alec Livingstone, 2002, Minerals of Scotland, Edinburgh, National Museums of Scotland
  4. ^ "Climatology maps". KNMI. 
  5. ^ "1961 minimum". KNMI. 
  6. ^ "1995 minimum". Tutiempo. 
  7. ^ "Averages for Leadhills". KNMI. 
  • Alec Livingstone, 2002, Minerals of Scotland, Edinburgh, National Museums of Scotland
  • Andrew, M. 2007, The Leadhills and Wanlockhead Railway (Online), Available from: "The Leadhills and Wanlockhead Railway" website
  • Meadowfoot Cottage. Date Unknown, Leadhills (Online), Available from: "Leadhills" website

External links[edit]

Public Domain This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.