Old Father Voe, the lake of Stane, is a history of Shotts in miniature,
showing very clearly the big change-overof 1802. Lying like a
water-serpent in the heart of Torbothie country, it was once known
as Deer Slunk, a prettylittle glen, quiet and shaded, where the shy
deer came down from the moors to drink.
Probably the Covenanters of the old hamlet of Stane would know
this oasis as such, where the little Starry-shaw Burn wimpled clear
and sweetdown through the little glen to join old man Calder.
Then came 1802 and after-which built the village of Shotts Iron Works,
poisoned the trout in the Calder, and changed the glen of Deer Slunk
into the Voe or reservoir for the furnaces.
And so, with no planning except to tear up the Black Diamonds,
modern Shotts grew up as the village of Shotts Iron Works or Calderside,
with Stane village nearby in the East End, then later Dykehead in the West End.
Three straggling villages, which later amalgamated under the name of Shotts,
while still jealously retaining their own particular names – to the puzzlement
of modern incomers. For many years bitter rivalry existed among the three
Fights and drunken brawls were frequent on Saturday nights at Stane
Corner, Ironworks Corner, and Dykehead Cross. It was not wise to venture
out of your own village into either of the others.
Probably the only time unity was achieved was during the period of the
Body Snatchers (up till 1831) when the watch-house at Kirk o’ Shotts our
vigilant forefathers waited in the night to ward off the vulture