Holy Island  Buteshire


In 1882-4, Frances Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland described Holy Island like this:

Holy Isle, an island of Kilbride parish, Arran, Buteshire, in the mouth of Lamlash Bay. Measuring 17hr. mile in length and from 3¾ to 5 furlongs in breadth, it rises to a height of 1030 feet. Its surface is picturesquely variegated with heath-clad acclivities, grassy ridges, and columnar masses-.the last consisting of clinkstone on bases of sandstone, and rising tier above tier to the summit. ...

Its height, as seen from the water, looks almost grander than that of Goatfell; and its summit is more difficult to scale, and commands nearly as brilliant a view. It is said to have got its name from being the retreat of a Culdee anchorite, St Maol Jos, whose hermitage, in the form of a natural cave, is still shown on its western side; and near this is a spring, a ' holy well,' which for centuries bore a surpassing repute among the superstitious for curing all sorts of diseases.—Ord. Sur., shs. 13, 21, 1870.

Holy Island through time

Holy Island is now part of North Ayrshire district. Click here for graphs and data of how North Ayrshire has changed over two centuries. For statistics about Holy Island itself, go to Units and Statistics.

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Holy Island, in North Ayrshire and Buteshire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 05th December 2021

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