Doune is a delightful, quaint village full of history and points of interest, as well as being home to a selection of high quality shops, services and eateries.
Doune is equidistant from Callander and Stirling – about 8 miles. The hub of the community is the Kilmadock Information & Heritage Centre, run by the Kilmadock Development Trust, which has been in existence since December 2000 and is the base for the Kilmadock Society, The Bridge (local newsletter), book club and community learning. This is a must for visitors to Doune, especially those researching family and local history. The centre is staffed by one employee who is assisted by a team of dedicated volunteers offering a friendly welcome and free advice. You will find a great selection of Scottish and local books, maps and reference guides. Open Mon to Sat 10am – 4pm, Sun 2pm – 4pm. Situated in Main Street opposite the Parish Church.
www.douneanddeanston.net Tel: 01786 841250
Deanston Distillery rests on the banks of the River Teith, with the stunning Trossachs countryside and the foothills of Ben Ledi in close proximity. Home to Scottish Leader Blended Scotch Whisky and the Deanston 12 year old Single Malt Scotch Whisky. The distillery is open for tours, by appointment and there is a distillery shop selling the whiskies and branded merchandise including polo shirts & fleeces. Shop Open Mon-Thurs 10am-4.00pm, Fri 10am-2.00pm. Closed 12.30pm to 1.00pm for lunch. Before reaching Doune (from Stirling), turn left before the bridge and turn right to the distillery. Tel: 01786 841422. www.burnstewartdistillers.com
A trail around the attractions of the Village of Doune.
1. Doune Castle: was built by the Duke of Albany in the 14th Century and once dominated the village. In the 15th Century Doune Castle became a Royal residence. Since 1580 the castle has been owned by the Earls of Moray and since 1984 has been in the care of Historic Scotland. Some may recognise it from the film Monty Python and the Holy Grail and it has also featured in the television film Ivanhoe. Open 7 days a week from Apr to Sept: 9.30am – 6pm, Oct: 9.30am – 4.30pm. Nov to Mar: 9.30am – 4pm (closed Thurs and Fri). Admission fee. Call 01786 841742 for more info.
2. Doune Pistols: In 1646, Thomas Cadell of Doune started making beautiful pistols, some with silver inlay. It as said that ‘no pistol made in Britain excelled or perhaps equaled those of his making, either for sureness or beauty’… Today the pistols fetch huge sums when appearing on the open market. A Doune pistol is said to have made the first shot in the American War of Independence. The factory is now an office and is situated at the rear of 35 Main Street. The exterior of the building is adorned with a plaque which details its history.
3. Alexander Ferguson, the creator of Edinburgh Rock was born and bred in Doune and as a young boy often experimented with toffee-making in his parents home in Graham Street. He left Doune to make his fortune and returned some years later and bought up the whole of Graham Street, known for decades thereafter as ‘Sweetie Lane’.
4. The Mercat Cross stands at the centre of the village. During the reign of King Charles 1, all public executions were to be undertaken at the ‘Mercat Cross of Down’. Formerly, hangings took place at the castle where the ‘gallows tree’ stood.
5. Red Kites at Argaty Estate which lies just a mile north-east of Doune. the name Argaty means ‘windy height’ in Gaelic. Argaty Estate is home to the magnificent Red Kites which were driven to extinction by persecution 130 years ago. They have returned to Central Scotland thanks to a successful re-introduction programme by RSPB Scotland. Open all year round with Ranger-led visits to the hide or guided walks. Call 01786 841373 for bookings and more info.
6. Doune Ponds Walk: A short walk to the lovely woodlands area around Doune Ponds. Much of the walk allows wheelchair access, although some paths are uneven. From the information centre, cross Main Street into Moray Street, past Moray Park and over the disused railway. Take the next road on your left which brings you out at the car park.
7. Colonel Sir David Stirling, DSO, OBE: founder of the Special Air Service Regiment, 1941. Raised here in Scotland, this 6ft 5in maverick designed the plan for L-Detachment, SAS Brigade. By tricking his way into seeing commander-in-chief General Auchinleck, he won approval. Working behind enemy lines, L-Detachment was so successful that Hitler ordered members killed on capture. His ethos of the pursuit of excellence, self-discipline, humility and humour is the hallmark of the present day SAS. 2 miles down B824 to Doune, from A9/M9 roundabout.