Mossblown is a village in South Ayrshire, Scotland, a little bigger than neighbouring Annbank. It was a coal mining community but the mines have been closed for some time now. There is a book available written by a local historian entitled 'Old Annbank and Mossblown' which provides more written and pictorial information about the village. Most recently (2010–11), the population of the village has grown, with new housing, both private and council, being added to the village's north-east boundary on the B743, the Ayr to Mauchline road. This is the latest expansion in housing development since a private housing scheme was built in Mossblown's south-eastern quarter in the 1990s, adjacent to the old Annbank Church (and cemetery which serves the populations of both Mossblown and Annbank).
A railway which still runs through the village used to serve as the main rail link from Stranraer to London, but this route has long since been demoted from public service, and all London to Stranraer services now go via Ayr. Until the mid-1960s, there was a thriving railway station located in the middle of the village, although it did not take its name from the village which hosted it, and instead was known as Annbank Station. It was of traditional timber-clad design and had one platform, approximately 80 metres long. Nearby, on the northern half of the village, a signal junction box stood for many years and required operators to manually change the signals and direct trains either north towards Tarbolton station or eastwards towards Annbank and Trabboch. A small BT telephone exchange now sits in the space that this station used to occupy.
Changes in Appearance
Although the majority of the current younger generation of Mossblown residents have experienced very few changes in the village's appearance, older residents can tell of how the village has changed considerably in character. For example, until the late 1940s - early '50s, there was a working farm located near the centre of the village, called Whiskeyhall Farm. A nearby street takes its name from this farm.
The area to the north-east of Mossblown, where Sloan Avenue and Mossbank Place are located today, looked a lot different in the 1930s, '40s and '50s: this part was known as Drumley (the nearby Drumley House School takes its name from here – sadly this has been demolished and to date awaits a new landowner). There was a working pit, also called Drumley, and the houses, built for the pit workers, consisted of two miners' 'rows', the 'long row' and the 'wee row' (single storey dwellings, often housing large families, nine or more, in two or three rooms). There was a community 'wash hoose' (wash house) where the wives would meet and do all their families' washing, while the husbands would work long hours down the nearby pit.
There are currently two amateur football teams in the village: Mossblown AFC and Drumley AFC. Both teams play in the Ayrshire Amateur league. The village is also served by an (sports) activity centre. Typical activities within the centre include; football, badminton, short tennis, gymnastics, netball, mini-netball, basketball, volleyball, archery, aerobics, roller hockey, dance classes, circuit training and various martial arts groups. The centre comprises a main hall 21.5m x 14.9m and a squash court. There is also a small gymnasium containing both cardivascular and resistance equipment.
Opposite the Activity centre on the B742 road to Annbank, the village is served by its local library. This service is provided as part of Ayrshire Council’s portfolio and continues to thrive after many years even in the face of the new e-reader technologies.
As of December 2013 there are two public houses in the village: The Fourways pub serving the south of the village and The Drumley Inn which serves the north, although in truth regulars from all over the village will populate either according to their preference. Other villagers see The ‘Tap O’ The Brae’ pub on Annbank’s Weston Brae as their regular. For many years there existed the Mossblown (Working Men's) Social Club, but recently this has been demolished and now residential properties sit on the site.
There is a grocery store across the road from the old Working Men's Social Club site. This shop now hosts the post office services. Next door is a fast wood Chinese Take Away outlet. The village also comprises a Tandoori and fish and chip takeaway, a hairdresser and a betting shop.
Two bus routes (nos 43 + 44) serve the village, connecting Mossblown with Ayr to the south, Annbank to the east and Tarbolton and New Cumnock to the North. Times vary accordingly but generally two buses per hour allow villagers to commute to Ayr, with its proximity of 5 miles giving villagers access to high street retailers.
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