Above: The twin stone gateposts and a screengrab from the ViewRanger app showing where they stand.

It’s quite probably a sad reflection on me, but I find old stone gateposts intriguing. Especially when they stand alone in the landscape, with no connecting fences or walls. It leaves me wondering about their history.

There are quite a few of these on the walks around the valley. So I thought I’d try and trace a pair that most of us will have passed on the path along the old railway track beside Fernilee Reservoir.

I used my ViewRanger app to pinpoint their exact position. And then took a look at the National Library of Scotland’s wonderful website to compare old maps with today’s satellite views. This fade shows the result…

It looks like the posts stood at the entrance to a footpath that led down from the railway track to Fernilee Gunpowder Mill. And were close to a building shown on the map at the end of a tramway track.

I think this must have been the main magazine for storing gunpowder as I know they were usually positioned as far away as possible from the main works. Perhaps unsurprisingly!

There’s lots of information about the gunpowder mill on this website.