Healing Spring: OS Grid Reference — NN 9631 1812
Also Known as:
Take the B8062 North from Auchterarder, and turn right immediately after crossing Kinkell Bridge. Continue through the hamlet of Trinity Gask, and take the next turn left. The Well is situated in the wooded area of land to your left, before you reach the church on the right. I tried visiting in summer but was beaten back by the boscage of man high nettles, goose grass and brambles. An autumn visit was made, and access was readily available to the wooded area over a barbed wire fence from the field behind the wood.
Archeology & History
The Canmore description quotes from an August 1967 report by an Ordnance Survey inspector:
“Trinity Well is now dry, and all that remains is an overgrown hollow. A manhole cover nearby suggests the spring is now piped.”
On the day of my 2014 visit, the water was flowing from an issue on the field side of the woodland. There was some low walling on the field side of the enclosure, otherwise no masonry or paving was visible. Any there may have been is now either buried or robbed for building material.
The 1796 Statistical Account has this to say: ‘ The most noted well in the parish is at Trinity Gask. It is remarkable for the purity and lightness of its water; the spring is copious and perennial. Superstition, aided by the interested artifices of popish priests, raised, in times of ignorance and bigotry, this well to no small degree of celebrity. It was affirmed, that every person who was baptised with the water of this well, would never be seized with the plague….. But the extraordinary virtue of Trinity Gask well has perished with the downfall of superstition, and the introduction of a free and rational enquiry into nature and religion.’
The 1837 New Statistical Account goes on to say: ‘….the Trinity Well, a little to the South of the manse, of great renown in Popish days for the performing of miraculous cures, fortifying against plague, witchcraft and such other evils. The right of bleaching at this well is one of the privileges of the minister’.
The Rev. John Wilson writes, in The Gazetteer of Scotland: ‘…a noticeable object is a well famous in Roman times for alleged thaumaturgic properties…’.
Processions to the Well were made on Trinity Sunday and the first Sunday in June
- The (First) Statistical Account of Scotland, 1796, Volume 18, page 487
- The New (Second) Statistical Account of Scotland, 1837, Volume 10, page 335
- Morris, Ruth & Frank, Scottish Healing Wells, Alethea: Sandy 1981.
- Wilson, John, The Gazetteer of Scotland, W.A. & K. Johnston: Edinburgh 1882
© Paul Hornby, The Northern Antiquarian