Memories of Kirrie wartime road blocks

A LOCAL historian has been heartened by the feedback he has received on his appeal for info on wartime road blocks in the area.

David Orr, chairman of Kirriemuir Heritage Trust, initally focused on a five-foot square block that was unearthed during excavation work at the top of the Roods.

Mr Orr was led to understand that the concrete block was one of two originally used as a barrier to bring traffic coming into Kirriemuir to a halt during the second world war, while a later secondary use was as a base for a weighing station during the local berry-picking season.

Following the initial tale which appeared in the Dispatch and Herald, highlighting Mr Orr’s appeal for more information, local folk who can remember the WW2 roadblocks at each side of the old road out of Kirrie at Hillhead have come forward.

“It seems the concrete block was on the other side of the dyke and the ground was owned by the council,” explains Mr Orr.

“Memory recalls a man called Jock Buttars cutting the verges there with a scythe.

“Many not only recall the concrete blocks, but a few can recall the ‘waterhouse’ building, which was described as being between the bakery at the top of the Roods and the lodge.

“The remains of the lead water pipes at the site confirm where this was located.

“This building was apparently associated with the bringing of the first gravity fed water supply to Kirriemuir from the Clash at Cortachy.

“One caller says there was another set of blocks across the road from the toll-house on the Forfar road.

“I have also had a call from a Glamis resident to inform me there is still one of the four-feet concrete cubes in existence in the centre of the village, complete with the steel eye for the shackles for the wire ropes to be attached.”