Cuil Cottage | 33 occupants (1851 - 2008)

Cuil Cottage

i.Historical evidence and known architectural history
This building is already in place by the time of 1851 census and appears essentially as it is now on the 1st Edition OS.
Internally there is extensive re-lining, this was done in the late 1960s by Nigel Callander and Willie MacPherson; John MacDonald was also involved at this time (working for Ardkinglas Estate?). Builder work by Bolek Kobiela.
Charles Ferguson, the joiner from Strachur, put in the existing windows in the last five years.
Data from the Ordnance Survey Name Book (1871)
CUIL : OS Name Book 54 [RCAHMS archive: reel 42, counter 001]
Name of site (modes of spelling) Spelling confirmed by authorities Descriptive remarks, general observations of interest
CUIL BEAG G F H(?) Callander Esq. [Ardkinglas]
Donald Black, Cuil
A M Vicai (Mc Vicar?), Clachan Beag A commodious farm house and offices about a mile south of Clachan.
The property of G F H(?) Callander, Esq. [of Ardkinglas].
Ordnance Survey, 1871, Name Book for Sheets XCIX (99), CXI (111), CXII (112), CXIII (113), CXIV (114), CXV (115), CXXIV (124), CXXV (125) and CXXVI (126), Argyllshire, 6inch scale, (21/04/1897).
[?] - Information added, not part of original document ; (?) - Spelling unclear

ii. General
This is a three-bay cottage, rectangular in plan and with a small gabled out-shot to the W. Its plan is the same as depicted on the 1st Edition OS, the only subsequent addition being the existing porch (the rear re-entrant to the NW). The simplicity of this structure is very characteristic, its overall form and details suggesting a date in the early 19th century.
Its general layout, with the presence of the byre to the W, is very comparable to that of the Cuil Beag cottage a little further along the shore to the E.

iii. Exterior
The principal elevation is of three bays; the cottage is gabled to E and W, with a double-pitched slated roof and chimneys to E and W, original copes no longer remain. The principal S-facing elevation is a very characteristic early form - tripartite with central entrance and a single window on either side.

The entirety of the building is harled and much of the harl looks as if it might be in part early (though in part a cement replacement). There are raised margins around the window and entrance, and the slightest hint of raised margins at the two southern corners. From the lowering of the soil at the S wall foot it is clear that the general construction is of lime-bonded random rubble. The windows and doors are relatively recent replacements.

A continuous flat-roofed dormer was added in the 1960s along the entirety of the rear roof pitch of the main cottage.

West range (former byre, existing kitchen)

The range to the West is rubble-built under a double-pitched roof that is gabled to the West. There is a broad secondary window in the West gable. The roof structure is apparently the original still though this is now roofed with crinkly tin. The S frontage of this extension is in line with the frontage of the house generally. To the rear there is a set-back and in the re-entrant angle formed by this there is a relatively new flat-roofed porch, also harled.

iv. Interior
The majority of interior surfaces have been lined out with gyproc and relatively little of early origin is now apparent.
In spite of all of these later alterations, including the complete replacement of the stair, in terms of planning the interior broadly reflects the original arrangement, with an entrance hall, stair facing one upon entry, principal ground floor rooms to either side, a stair up, and then principal bedroom spaces on either side.
Downstairs most of the partitions in the central area are of gyproc upon light studwork. It is possible that the two principal that separate the entrance hall area from the rooms on either side, may retain earlier fabric; certainly the doors to E and W side are of 19th century date. The latter is of plank and batten construction with beads at the tongue and groove vertical jointing; a good latch of wrought iron. The door into the drawing room on the E side is of similar construction although in place of a latch there is a more formal box lock with brass handles, all coeval.

It seems the original kitchen was on the W side. The abutting byre structure (present kitchen) is now accessed immediately beyond through the present porch. When John MacDonald came to do his works in the later 1960's the byre was occupied by hens.
In the western main room the existing fireplace is a ceramic tile construction, in shades of beige - some debate as to whether this was put in the late 1960's or a little earlier, perhaps shortly post-war.
In the E room the apparently original fireplace in the gable wall still survives. This is built of refactory-type bricks of a cream/beige fabric, and has a low arched head. The existing hearth area is of ceramic tile matching that in the western room and of much more recent origin. This fireplace has been very recently refurbished with the existing wooden mantelshelf put in. The architectural input on this was by David Sumsion.
The existing kitchen in the range to the W was entirely refurbished and lined out in the 1960's works; the present kitchen window to the W was inserted at this stage. There is an existing back door into the main house at the rear re-entrant. This may be original and there seems to be some memory of there having been a porch at this position prior to the construction of the existing.

v. Notes on setting
There is a small area of enclosed walled ground facing the loch side at the front, retaining wall along the roadside. The E side of the enclosure runs in line with the E gable. To the rear there is evidence for a further section of walling running up the hill on the line of the gable behind the house. A small burn runs down the rear from NE to SW. Outside the building to the W there is a pile of cream 12? quarry tiles; these perhaps came from either one of the interiors (W ground floor room in the main cottage?).

The cottage was originally approached form the W by a gently sloping drive up from the roadside. Partly cutting into this now is the access leading to a secondary shed. The latter is of crinkly tin construction (and quite picturesque in its own right!). There is a retaining wall for the bank just-up slope from the shed on its W side; a septic tank is concealed within this banking.

The burn also runs down diagonally behind the house, running down to the west side, which is culminated under the entrance drive and there's a little sort of well like opening within the retaining wall on the roadside. There are remains of a stone dyke or similar type construction going out onto the loch shore, double check that with the earlier OS map.

The 1st edition OS indicates there had been a small building on the loch-side, beyond the main road (a boat-house?). This had been in line with the E gable wall of the cottage. No sign of it is now visible; the structure had likely been a casualty of subsequent road widening and building-out onto the shore side with rock-armour.

Occupants

2013 - 2016
Holiday House
Holiday House 2013 - 2016
2009 - 2012
Sandra McCheyne
Local Information - 2009 - 2012 - Tree Shop Assistant
2006 - 2008
Barbara Sands
Local Information 2006-2008 - wife - -
2006 - 2008
Mark Sands
Local Information 2006-2008 - - -
2002 - 2006
Cecil Arnott
Local Information 2002 - - -2006
2002 - 2002
Alison Marr
Local Information 2002 - - -
1970 - 1971
Elizabeth Brodie
Electoral Roll 1970 – 1971 - daughter in law - -
1949 - 1949
Allan Brodie
1949 - nephew - child -
1949 - 1971
James W (Jim) Brodie
1949 - Electoral Roll 1967-1969 - son - - Electoral Roll 1970 – 1971 - son - -
1949 - 1984
William Brodie
Electoral Roll 1949 - brother in-law - - Electoral Roll 1951-1955 - husband - -Electoral Roll 1959-1966 - husband - -Electoral Roll 1967-1969 - husband - - Electoral Roll 1970 – 1971 - husband - Electoral Roll 1972-1984 - husband - -
1928 - 2000
Isabella Conway Brodie
Electoral Roll 1945 - daughter - Electoral Roll 1949 - sister - Electoral Roll 1951-1955 -Electoral Roll 1959-1966 - Electoral Roll 1967-1969 -Electoral Roll 1970 – 1971 - - - - - - - - - Electoral Roll 1972-1984 -E.R 1985 - 2000
1928 - 1955
Alex Conway
Electoral Roll 1928 - son - - Electoral Roll 1945 - son - - Electoral Roll 1949 - brother - - Electoral Roll 1951-1955 - brother - -
1928 - 1945
Catherine Conway
Electoral Roll 1928 - wife - - Electoral Roll 1931-1939 - wife - -Electoral Roll 1945 - widow - -
1928 - 1955
Ian Conway
Electoral Roll 1928 - son - - Electoral Roll 1931-1939 - son - -Electoral Roll 1949 - - -Electoral Roll 1951-1955 - brother - -
1928 - 1939
James Conway
Electoral Roll 1928 - - Electoral Roll 1931-1939
1928 - 1939
James Conway
Electoral Roll 1928 - - - Electoral Roll 1931-1939 - - -
1928 - 1928
Jim Conway
Electoral Roll 1928 - son - -
1891 - 1915
John Luke
Census 1891 - son - Age: 9 years - -Census 1901 - son - Age: 19 Year - Estate Labourer - -Electoral Roll 1910-1915
1881 - 1891
Bella Luke
Census 1881 - granddaughter - Age: 3 Year - - Census 1891 - daughter - Age: 13 Year - -
1881 - 1891
Catherine Luke
Census 1881 - granddaughter - Age: 7 years - - Census 1891 - daughter - Age: 17 Year - -
1881 - 1919
Isabella Luke
Census 1881 - daughter in-law - Age: 42 Year - - Census 1891 - wife - Age: 52 Year - -Census 1901 - wife - Age: 62 Year - -Valuation Roll 1908 - -Cottar - Electoral Roll 1919
1881 - 1891
Nicol Luke
Census 1881 - grandson -Age:5 years - -Census 1891 - son - Age 15years
1881 - 1881
Catherine McIntyre
Census 1881 - visitor - Age: 16 Year - -
1861 - 1871
Jessie Luke
Census 1861 - -granddaughter - -Age: 7 years - -Census 1871 - -granddaughter - -Age: 17 years
1861 - 1861
Jane McNicol
Census 1861 - domestic - Age: 13 Year - -
1851 - 1881
Catherine Luke
Census 1851 - wife - Age:54 years - Census 1861 - wife - Age: 64 years - -Census 1871 - wife - Age: 74 years - -Census 1881 - wife - Age: 84 years
1851 - 1851
Catherine Luke
Census 1851 - daughter - Age: 15 years
1851 - 1881
Duncan Luke
Census 1851 - Age: 57 years - fisherman - -Census 1861 Age: 67 years - Census 1871 - Age: 77 years - Census 1881 Age: 87 years
1851 - 1851
Duncan Luke
Census 1851 -son - Age: 28 years
1851 - 1901
John Luke
Census 1851 - son - Age: 13 Year - - Census 1861 - son - Age:23 years - Census 1871 - son -Age: 33 years - Census 1881 - son - Age: 43 years - Census 1891 - Age: 53 years - fisherman - - Census 1901 - Age: 60 years
1851 - 1851
Margaret Luke
Census 1851 - daughter in-law - Age: 22 Year - -
1851 - 1871
Nicol Luke
Census 1851 - son - Age: 10 years - -Census 1861 - son - Age: 20 years - -Census 1871 - son - Age: 30 years -
1851 - 1851
Peter Luke
Census 1851 - son - Age: 21 Year - -

Documents

Download

Cuil Cottage, Barbara Sands

Feelings about Cuil Cottage by Barbara Sands
Download

Cuil Cottage, Lukes

Lukes Family Tree
Download

Jim Brodie's Account of Life at Cuil Cottage

Memories of growing up in Cairndow
Download

Cuil Cottage Poem 2

Written after we had cleared out Cuil Cottage in March 2004, after the death of our mother and grandmother and great-grandmother - Catherine Isabelle Brodie
Download

Tom's Tour

A transcript, by Christina, of conversations recorded during a visit by Tom Addyman, John MacDonald, Alice Beattie, Dot Chalmers and Christina Noble.
Download

Cuil Cottage Census, Valuation Roll and Electoral Roll

Cuil Cottage 1851-1901 Census 1908 Valuation Roll 1910-2008 Electoral Roll