The A to Z of Scottish Places: H
... Holy Island
||Firth of Clyde||93
||Acres: 625, Height: 1030ft|
While approaching Arran from the Clyde mainland one can easily be mistaken into thinking
that as well as Goat Fell to the north, the capital Brodick is flanked by a southern peak,
but as distance closes this peak soon resolves into a seperate island, Holy Island. The
island gets its name from St Molaise, a follower of St Columba, who is reputed to have resided
on it. A mile long and over a thousand feet high, Holy Island has grassy lower slopes, heather
covered higher ground and a rocky summit, giving the impression of a mountain in minature.
The Saint's Cave about 30 feet above sea-level is inscribed with millenia of scribblings
including a short Runic message. The present owners continue the island's link with religion -
they are buddhist monks who welcome the quiet visitor.
|Settlement||South Lanarkshire||9||Pop: 49991|
Built at the centre of a former coal-mining district, Hamilton was made a royal burgh
in 1548. Cromwell made the town a headquarters in 1651. There were many great houses in the
area including Hamilton Palace, built in the 19th century but demolished less than a hundred
years later; Cadzow Castle, a royal residence since the 10th century, and Chaterlault Lodge.
The latter was designed by William Adam who also designed the town's octoganal parish church.
Hamilton race-course is one of the best in the country.