From Crannog to Castle

After the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314AD, Robert the Bruce gave land to the de Burnard family, a local family who lived on a Crannog or loch dwelling at the Loch of Leys. 

Robert the Bruce appointed Alexander de Burnard the Royal Forester of Drum and presented him with the ancient Horn of Leys as a badge of office.

For the next 250 years the de Burnard family continued to live on the Crannog but in the sixteenth century decided to build Crathes Castle as their new home.

The ancient Horn of Leys, which marks Robert the Bruce's gift to the family is on display at Crathes Castle. Sir James Burnett of Leys donated Crathes Castle, gardens and surrounding woodlands and fields to The National Trust for Scotland in 1951 and the Castle now forms part of the North East of Scotland's Castle Trail.

Although the land at the Loch of Leys has been drained the location of the crannog is still clearly visible.

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