over 600 years this Kincardineshire churchyard is perhaps best known for
its links to the family of Robert Burns. The first church located on
this site dates back to medieval times and was dedicated to St Michael
the Archangel. The present ruins are from the 17th century though the
church was altered and extended a number of times. It was superseded by
the present church of Glenbervie when it was built in 1826.
those interested in the family of Robert Burns there are two stones
relating to his ancestors. The first is his great-grandparents, James
Burnes and Margarett Falconer along with their son Thomas Burnes and
their only daughter Margarett. The second commemorates James's elder
brother Willliam Burnes and his wife Christian Fotheringham. William was
the great-grand-uncle of Robert Burns and was also the great-grandfather
of John Burnes, another member of this family who gained fame as a poet.
His best work was "Thrummy Cap", a ghostly tale set in a haunted
ale-house near the old kirk of Glenbervie. The
roofed enclosure for these stones was erected in 1968 to protect them from further
Also of note is the burial vault of the lairds of
Glenbervie, located in the ruined chancel of the old church. The Douglas
family have connections here dating back to 730AD!
The track leading to the churchyard is signposted from the main road
and parking is easily found just outside the graveyard. Oddly this track
appears to cut through the present grounds of a factory which lies close
to the graveyard site with workers traversing the track at various
times, so extra care should be taken when driving down.
This church is in a beautiful spot with a stream
running close by. You might also catch a glimpse of Glenbervie house at
the other side of the valley. A well maintained site that I imagine has
more visitors than most during the summer due to the distinguished
connections mentioned above. I however saw no one on my visit in the
month of November! Pity that the factory is so close as you can hear the
machinery from the graveyard - though it was by no means loud it did
detract from the romance of the place.
Well worth a visit though and recommended to you.
If you require a specific gravestone photo from the above send me your relevant details and
I'll e-mail you what I have. Contact me
Click on photos below to enlarge