The launch of the Trail
Board 1

Tolls and tankards

Over 200 years ago, this board would have been at the junction of two toll roads, next to one of the village’s former pubs, the White Horse.

A woman walks down a deserted Killearn Main Street, circa 1911
The Toll House is in the centre of this picture taken around 1911, with the old Post Office on the left and the White Horse pub on the right. (From the All Killearn Archive collection.)
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Over the road is the old Toll House, built sometime after 1800. There would have been a gate across each road that the toll keeper opened on payment of a charge. Before the toll roads were established in 1791, it was very difficult for any wheeled vehicle to get to the village. The board on the Toll House lists the tolls charged in 1841. Tolls were abolished in 1881.

Opposite the Kirk is the Old Mill pub. While the building dates from the late 18th century, it has only been a pub since the 1980s. It was used by the village carter, and then in the 1930s it became the workshop of a handloom weaver. On either side of the Toll House are early 19th-century cottages. The vets’ surgery used to be the doctor’s surgery and the cottage at the end was the Post Office until the 1930s.

On the same side of the road as this board, is the former Free Church, built in 1847 after the ‘Disruption’ split the Church of Scotland in 1843. When the two churches reunited in 1931, it became the Church Hall and then in 2004, a shop and flats.

Did you know

Early on Christmas Day 1950, a group of nationalists removed the Stone of Destiny from Westminster Abbey. For a few days immediately before it was returned to Arbroath Abbey on 11 April 1951, it was hidden in a house in Killearn.

Cross Station Road, pass in front of the Village Hall towards the Kirk to reach stop 2.