ScotWays’s Oldest Standing Signpost

Sun shining on a rectangular sign that says Public Path to Braemar by the Larig Ghru, surrounded by pine trees
ScotWays’s oldest signpost.

Hidden amongst the Pine trees at the northern end of the Lairig Ghru stands this gorgeous old sign. It is the oldest one installed by ScotWays that is still in situ and maybe the oldest right of way signpost in the U.K.!

It was first installed by Walter Smith and his deputation in July 1885.  That sign was not too different to the one that we see here there today but it had red letters on a dark background.

In the early I920s, the Society looked for a new signpost supplier.  After detailed discussions with the Royal Label Factory at Stratford Upon Avon, the final design for this type of sign was for a plate 27” x 7 I/2”, 3/8” deep, and weighing 20Ibs. The 3” Tee steel post weighed 971bs and the two, plate and post, cost £2. 0. 6d. Surprisingly, this was cheaper than a wooden one the Society had installed near Callander.!

Included in the second-order for Royal Label Factory signs was this one, a replacement for the original, for Coylumbridge. It reached Aviemore by train on 16 July 1925 via the London, Midland & Scottish Railways. With black letters on a white background, it was installed by B Maclachlan, Carpenter, under the watchful eye of our Director Arthur Russell.  Why was a replacement needed? The files don’t say.

In 2011, the sign was refurbished and a fracture in the plate was repaired before it was repainted with white letters on a green background, just like our other signs. 

Next time you pass on your way to Loch Morlich or Cairngorm,  keep an eye out for this sign – it’s been asserting a right of way for a very long time and is our oldest sign still guiding people along their way! 

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