DUNDONALD, Ayrshire

"The parish of Dundonald was anciently of much greater extent than now. It comprehended on the east, the chapelry of Richardstoun, which was formed into a separate parish, long before the Reformation; and it comprehended on the south, the chapelry of Crosbie, now included in the united parish of Monkton and Prestwick."

"Ayrshire Nights Entertainment: A Descriptive Guide to the History, Traditions, Antiquities of the County of Ayr" by John MacIntosh of Galston, Ayrshire, published in 1894, by John Menzies & Co. of Kilmarnock, Dunlop and Drennan.

Bibliography

"Pictorial History of Dundonald" compiled by Robert Kirk, (local historian and milkman) published in 1989 at Darvel, Ayrshire; price 4.95; 88 pages; ISBN - 0-907526-39-X.

Some very good local history can be found in a book published in 1939, "Dundonald, the Parish and Its Setting" by the Rev. James H. Gillespie, published in 1939.

Cemeteries

The Troon & Ayrshire FHS have also published the Dundonald Burial Register and booklets of Dundonald and Crosbie (Troon) monumental inscriptions.

Church History

"The Parish Church of Dundonald, situated near the head of the village, was built in 1803, and contains 630 sittings. It is a plain structure, graced by an elegant spire, in which there is a clock, and a bell. It occupies the site of a very ancient religious edifice which belonged to the monks of Paisley. The church was granted by the founder of Dalmulin convent, to that institution, founded in 1229. Within the walls, were interred the remains of William, first Earl of Dundonald, who died in 1686."

"The bell of the old church is an antiquarian curiosity, and is now in the possession of the Free Church of Dundonald. It bears the following inscription:

"Sancte Egidie, ora pro nobis, anno domini, MCCCLXXXX", that reads in English:

"Saint Egidius, pray for us. In the year of our Lord, 1390."

"The burying-ground is immediately behind the church. It does not contain any tombstones calling for special note, the oldest discernable date being 1737. The session records date from 1602, and the first volume, extending over a period of 40 years, contains a great deal of parochial information that is curious and interesting. Among entries of this kind are minutes of the trial of Patrick Lowrie, warlock; and Catherine M'Teir, demit of witchcraft. These seem to have been cases of peculiar interest, as the attention of the session was more or less occupied by them for nearly five years."

"Ayrshire Nights Entertainment: A Descriptive Guide to the History, Traditions, Antiquities of the County of Ayr" by John MacIntosh of Galston, Ayrshire, published in 1894, by John Menzies & Co. of Kilmarnock, Dunlop and Drennan.

Description and Travel

Dundonald Parish is located on the coast of central Ayrshire in the former District known as Kyle. The parish, originally centred on that village, also includes the town of Troon, its suburb Barassie, Fullarton and the former parish of Crosbie.

Dundonald is a beautiful, typically lowland Ayrshire village based on a single street of weaver's cottages infilled with later developments.

The early 1803 Dundonald Parish Church (Church of Scotland) lies at the heart of the village. The churchyard's headstones are documented in "Dundonald Monumental Inscriptions". The village is small, with a few shops on main street, a grocer or two, post office and a primary school. Older children generally go to Marr College in Troon, over the western hill, for their secondary schooling. A bowling green at the foot of the ruined castle was once a communal grazing area. The village is surrounded by low hills, mostly still dedicated to dairy and sheep farming. The 14th century ruins of Dundonald Castle still overwhelm the village. It was once the favourite residence of King Robert II. The large tower, which incorporates the remains of a 13th century gatehouse, and much of the barmkin wall are all that survive.

Dundonald Parish also includes the town of Troon.

Within the parish lie the ruins of Auchan, a formerly magnificent mock-military country home erected by Sir William Cochrane in 1644. The last permanent resident was Susannah, Countess of Eglinton who died in 1780. She had been a great beauty and artistic patron in her youth. But according to tradition, she trained rats in her old age which she would summon to dine with her at her otherwise lonely dining table.

For details of the modern village, photos and the history of Dundonald Castle see the following Internet sites:

View photographs of Dundonald and the surrounding area.

Gazetteers

Historical Geography

Information about boundaries and administrative areas is available from A Vision of Britain through time.

Maps

View maps of Dundonald.