Sites and Monument Record: Kinningars Doocot (SMR 33)

This doocot started life as an engine house in the mid 18th century. It stands in Kinningars Park, Bo'ness (also known as Dovecote Park) and is of the common lectern type, built of random rubble and patched with brick. It formerly possessed crow-steps, but is now roofless and partially ruinous. The structure is pierced by a large round archway on the ground floor and a round-arched door in its W end, reflecting the fact that the lower half had been constructed to house a pumping engine (now gone) for the nearby mine shaft. The upper part was later converted into a doocot and still possesses some 415 brick boxes.
In 1760 it housed the "North Fire Engine" for pumping water out of the pits on the Grange Estate. Only the fourth steam engine to be erected in the Falkirk district, it is one of the earliest surviving in Scotland. By c1820 the coal to the south was practically exhausted, and so the Cadell family started mining under the Forth from new pits located on the foreshore known as "moat pits". Consequently the old engine house was decommissioned, but not demolished. With the building of Old Grange House by the Cadell family it found a new lease of life as a doocot . The doocot for the Older Grange House being further W in the vicinity of Doocot Brae.
It is this combination of use as an engine house and a pigeon house which makes the monument of great interest; reflecting the industrial and social history of the area.

Object detail

Site type
Site status
Site history notes
In 1997 the wooden lintels supporting the nesting boxes on the west and east sides were badly damaged by fire caused by vandals. The Parks Dept subsequently replaced them with concrete beams.
Site grid ref
NT 0139 8129


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