KILWINNING - Extract from National Gazetteer, 1868

[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer (1868)]

"KILWINNING, a parish in the district of Cunninghame, county Ayr, Scotland, 3 miles N.W. of Irvine. It is situated on the rivers Garnock and Lugton, and contains the post town of Kilwinning, and the villages of Doura, Fergushill, and Dalgarven. It is a station on the Glasgow and South-Western railway, where there is a junction to Ardrossan. The parish is in the presbytery of Irvine, and synod of Glasgow and Ayr. The minister's stipend is £266. The church, erected in 1775 on the site of the abbey (afterwards mentioned), is a commodious structure. Here the United Presbyterians, the United Original Secession Church, Free Church, and Morrisonians, have each a place of worship. There are several schools for both sexes throughout the parish, both in connection with the churches and the neighbouring works. Here are the remains of a Tyronensian abbey, founded in 1140 by the Constable Hugh de Morville. It was dedicated, like the church which preceded it, to St. Winning. Its last abbot was Gavin Hamilton, of the Rosslock family, a hot opponent of John Knox. In 1560 it was destroyed by order of the States General of Scotland, the church and steeple being the only portions left. The parish derives its name from St. Winning, a Scottish saint of the 8th century; and there is in the district a well still known as Winning's Well. Eglinton Castle, Monkcastle, Ashgrove, and Mountgreenar, are the principal seats. Coal, limestone, and sandstone are extensively worked in the neighbourhood. Here are the Eglinton and other iron works, as well as several corn and sawing mills. The town is situated on rising ground, and commands a view of the Frith of Clyde. It is ancient, and consists principally of one street. It contains a foundry, two banking offices, a savings-bank, and friendly societies. The inhabitants are chiefly employed in mining and weaving. At this place the practice of archery is still kept up by the inhabitants, and prizes are annually shot for. It is the seat of the most ancient masonic lodge of Scotland, which is said to have been established in the middle of the 12th century by masons employed in the erection of the abbey. Fairs are held on the 1st February, and the first Wednesday in November."

"DALGARVAN, a village in the parish of Kilwinning, in the county of Ayr, Scotland. It is situated 2 miles N. of the town of Kilwinning, near the Glasgow and Ayr railway."

"DOURA, a village in the parish of Kilwinning, in the county of Ayr, Scotland. It is connected with the extensive coalworks in its vicinity."

"EGLINTON CASTLE, the seat of the Earl of Eglinton, in the parish of Kilwinning, county Ayr, Scotland, 2 miles N. of Irvine. It stands on the banks of the Lugton, and was built in 1798. The park extends over 1,200 acres. The family of Eglinton trace their descent from Roger de Montgomery, who came over with William I. [See Eaglesham.] In 1829 a tournament was held here."

"FERGUS HILL, a village in the parish of Kilwinning, county Ayr, Scotland, 5 miles N.W. of Irvine. It is chiefly peopled by colliers."

[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]

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