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Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Lathockar Water Tower Restored !

© Photograph Copyright Martin Tomlinson

BWTAS was recently contacted by Martin Tomlinson, who kindly provided information and images of the Lathockar water tower — a tower until then, unknown to BWTAS. Martin had supplied St Andrews in focus magazine, with an article back in July 2013, when the tower was surrounded by trees. An extract that is reproduced here:

The water tower was built over 100 years ago and was erected to provide water to the Lathockar Estate when the manor house existed. The water was provided by a hydraulic ram from Cameron Burn behind Cameron Village Hall, which is still there. Prior to the water tower being built, water was taken manually from Cameron Burn to the manor house. The lady, named Christy Scott, who provided the water lived in a now derelict cottage named Hazelden Cotton in the woods behind Cameron Village Hall.

The water tower and the manor house can clearly be seen on a map from 1894. During WWII a Prisoner of War camp was constructed to the south of the tower, the buildings are still there. The article continues:

After the war, one of the ex prisoners, of the prisoner of war camp behind the tower, from eastern Europe returned to Fife and searched for the tower. Johnny Paul saw this man twice on the roads at Dunino and at Balone. The man also spoke to the foresters wife at Cameron and asked for directions to the tower. A forester used to check the water level periodically in the water tower and on the same day went into the tower and noticed a man there. He spoke to the man who didn’t answer. The forester noticed that the man’s feet were not on the floor. The man had committed suicide by hanging himself in the tower. Apparently the man had travelled from eastern Europe for this sole purpose.

© Photograph Copyright Martin Tomlinson

Now the tower is a marvellous feature on the skyline, restored to its original glory by Nivens — the developer who is building 13 houses on the site. "Well done" we say, for understanding the heritage of the tower. Prior to this intervention, the tower was in very poor shape with trees encroaching, some fallen on to it and threatened with demolition! This is despite the water tower being registered as an Ancient and Historical Monument — see here.

© Photograph Copyright Martin Tomlinson

© Photograph Copyright Martin Tomlinson

Click on pictures for a larger image… The tower is located at NO 48927 10889.


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