There are a number of wood carvings in Linnpark. All of them were created by Sculptor Robert Coia. He is based in Pollok Park in the old sawmill beside the weir over which the White Cart river flows - the same one as flows through Linnpark.
And this is the one which has been adopted by the Gentlemen's Walking Club to symbolise Linnpark.
You can also find him on Facebook - but you need to be logged in: he has two pages, one for himself, and one for his sculptures.
So where are these carvings in Linpark ? Two places:
- By the playground behind [to the east] of the mansion House which has the Commonwealth Games carving of a palm tree - tho it was erected a bit late for that,
- All around the wood behind and below the stables. These carvings are of woodland people, animals, and other things, including:
- The druidic man who feaures on the Linnpark Facebook page
- Huge Toad Stools
- Snakes and the like
Here are some photos.
These photos were taken all round the "Millennium Nature Reserve Nature Trail" - often called the Childrens' Path in the Stables Wood
Introduction to Trail
A leaflet was published describing it. The leaflet describes ten points, of which two are now inaccessible because they are within the, now privately run, Stables; these were Point One - The Butterfly Garden, and Point Ten - The Bird Hide. Item Eight, the Teepee, is no longer. One item of great interest - The Druidic Man [near the south eastern entrance] - was missed off. The map from the leaflet has been used along with local knowledge to create a printable map.
The remaining points are:
- 2: The Stables Entrance to the Trail.
- 3: The Limekilns [better seen from Point 5]
- 4: The pond - and millstone.
- 5: View Point for the Lime Kilns, and the Fairy Circle
- ???: The Druidic Man
- 6: The Southern Entrance - the Totem Pole - or the Painted Gate Posts
- 7: The Wooden Bridge
- 9: Former Quarry - was once a Rustic Play Area.
Point Two - The Stables Entrance
This gate marks the first ^ • steps towards entering this previously impenetrable woodland. Here the Rhododendrons ( Rhododendron ponticum ) were as tall as 5m and nobody had been into this area for over 50 years.
Although these rhododendrons have attractive purple flowers, they are not a native shrub. Originally from SE Europe, few species of British insect eat the leaves and even fewer wildflowers grow beneath their shady canopy.
When the rhododendrons were removed, native shrubs and spring wildflowers were planted here to increase the biodiversity of the area
Point Three - Limekilns
On either side of this footpath and staircase are six rare historical features, the only ones of their type left in Glasgow. Rediscovered by local historian Stuart Nisbet in the year 2000 when the rhododendrons were removed, these 18th Century limekilns were an important part of the local economy from the 1760's until the early 1800's.
The ground beneath you consists of limestone rock which when burned and crushed helped to fertilise the heavy clay fields of neighbouring farmland. The small 'glen' you see before you is in fact the quarry from which the limestone was hewn and the horseshoe-shaped structures are the clamp kilns in which the limestone was burned with coal and then removed by hand on to carts for distribution.
Even though the limestone is not visible here, plants can be a good indicator of the underlying rocks. Sanicle is a plant that thrives on lime-rich rock and grows in Linn Park only along the line of the band of limestone in this area. It has shiny dar k green leaves and small white flowers carried on a long stalk.
Point Four - The Pond and Millstone
This pond was built in autumn 1999 after frogspawn was found laid in a plastic bag in the woods in the spring of that year. Since then the pond has been colonised by Water Beetles, Pond Skaters, and Common Newts. Frogspawn was laid in the pond for the first time in 2001. Native marsh plants have been planted around the pond including Flag Iris, Meadowsweet and Marsh Marigold. Common Spotted and Northern Marsh Orchids have also been planted here as they were removed from the area of a proposed housing scheme in Castlemilk.
The circular millstone was found during pathwork, buried under soil and leaves. There were many mills along the river in the past and it may have come from one of those.
Point Five - View Point and Fairy Circle
From this point you have a fine view of one of the limekilns in the quarry. You are now standing above what was the steep quarry cliff face but has since eroded to form a slope. You may be able to make out a ditch behind you running behind the log circle to the top of the staircase. This was to prevent the quarry from flooding after heavy rain.
The dead trees on the bottom of the glen are Elm trees. There were many large Elms in this area but all have been affected by Dutch Elm Disease which is caused by a fungus carried to the tree by an otherwise harmless beetle.
As you approach the next mushroom look out high above your head for a large brown nest box. This is for Kestrels which breed most years in the woods nearby.
Comment added: There is a log circle - or a Fairy Circle here for children. Is the Kestrel's Nest Box still there ?
The Druidic Man
This is where the carving of the Druidic man is. See the photos above. Look for the bairds carved into his head.
Point Six - Old Gate Posts - Totem Pole
This gate replaces an old green iron gate that marked a former entrance into the woods here. It is thought to indicate an old track from a nearby coal mine to the limestone quarry below. The original iron pillars have been retained and painted to reflect the surrounding habitats. One pillar shows the wildlife to be found in the meadow up the hill and the other shows the plants and animals found in the wood itself.
Comment added: The landscape shows the formation of an old road running from this gate to where the old pavilion was. We suggest it was the access from the Stables to the Pavilion.
Point Seven - Wooden Bridge
This solid wooden bridge crosses a small drain from the stableyard. Wildflowers such as Purple Loosestrife and Ragged Robin have been planted here, as well as Marsh Marigold, Cuckoo-flower and Water Avens.
The tall fast-growing plant growing behind the fence with large heartshaped leaves is Japanese Knotweed. This plant originates from the Far East but is commonly found in gardens. It frequently escapes and when it does it can dominate an area by mid-summer, shutting out light to the woodland floor and preventing other wild plants from growing there.
Point Nine - A Former Quarry turned into a Rustic Play Area.
This former quarry site has been transformed into a Q seating area with a minibeast theme. Here you can follow the life-cycle of a butterfly, from adult to egg, caterpillar to pupa and back to adult. The log sculpture shows a variety of minibeasts including a Millipede, a Spider, a Woodlouse, a Centipede and in the middle, a Stag Beetle. It is carved from an ash tree which was blown over in the high winds of winter 1999 and sculpted by local artist Robert Coia.
In spring the area is awash with wildflowers. Yellow Primroses carpet the bank behind the caterpillar. This bank is thought to be a spoil heap from the 18th century limestone quarry. Primroses thrive on this lime-rich soil. In late spring the aromatic leaves and star-shaped white flowers of Wild Garlic dominate the woodland floor. Early summer produces a flne show of Bluebells in this area.
The butterfly mosaic was made by local people. Many of the stones have individual pictures of wild plants or animals painted on them. The whisky barrel 'eggs' have been planted with herbs attractive to butterflies such as Orange Tips and Small Tortoiseshells.
Comment added: Due to a total lack of maintenance the area became increasingly vandalised, culminating in the destruction by fire of the squirrel upon which one could sit. See the photos above.