The Garden Guide

Book: Gardening tours by J.C. Loudon 1831-1842
Chapter: Northern England and Southern Scotland in 1841


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July 28, 29. - The road from Bothwell Castle to the village of Hamilton presents some grand masses of wood on hilly ground, and crosses the Clyde and its steep rocky banks, also crowned with wood. The plantations belonging to the park of Hamilton Palace border the road on each side, from the bridge till we arrive at the village. This village, which in 1804, when we first saw it, was a dirty miserable place, with scarcely a good house except the inn, is now entirely changed. It contains a number of substantial houses, some in streets, but the greater number detached. The old inn is turned into the office of the Duke of Hamilton's land-steward, and there is a most substantial new inn built, in which we obtained most excellent fresh salmon and old whiskey, and the very best treatment; but very indifferent potatoes and other vegetables, from there being no market-gardener at Hamilton, and no early potatoes grown in the land-lord's garden, and from every vegetable, except potatoes, being obtained from Glasgow. We do not recollect a single objection to this inn, except that the upper sashes of all the rooms, whether bed-rooms or sitting-rooms, were fixed, and, consequently, the rooms could never be properly ventilated. We afterwards found this to be the case with the windows of even the best houses in Princes Street, Edinburgh, which we were not so much surprised at, as they have been built half a century; but we did not expect to find it in a first-rate inn, built by the Duke of Hamilton within a few years. The fault is of course the architect's or the carpenter's, for it cannot be supposed for a moment that an individual so exalted in station, so liberal in sentiment, and of such excellent taste, more especially in architecture, as the present Duke of Hamilton, would build otherwise than on the very best principles.