Ben Lawers Hotel

Church records tell us that Alexander Fisher and his wife Mary McLean had their first 3 children baptized in Crofthouse of Lawers between 1838 and 1840. They were at that time the possessors of the Ben Lawers Hotel which had recently been built on the farmstead of Crofthouse otherwise known as Taynacroit (Gaelic 'Tigh na croit' = 'Croft house').

The third Earl, at his own expense, had built a road from Kenmore to Glendochart along the north side of Loch Tay. This road passed close to Crofthouse where there was a hostelry (in a petition dated 1793 Duncan MacNaughtan of Tynacroit was described as 'keeper of public house' and in another petition dated 1797 he was described as 'change keeper at Crofthouse of Lawers' - in Scotland a small inn or ale house was once called a change, sometimes a 'change house'; and a tavern keeper was called a 'change keeper').

The road along the north side of Loch Tay was upgraded to a Turnpike in 1828. With the advent of regular coach travel along this road it became inevitable that the old hostelry half way between Kenmore and Killin would be upgraded to a purpose-built inn. It is not certain when the Ben Lawers Inn was built but the advertisement (left) would suggest it was shortly before 1840. Was Alexander Fisher taken on as an interim manager of the new farm and inn until a permanent tenant could be found?

The building of the new hotel and courtyard steading on the south side of the road has left no visible remains of the township, comprising six buildings and an enclosure, which is depicted at this location on Farquharson's 1769 Survey. Farquharson named the township Taynacroit though he also gives an alternative name, Kiln Croft, in the Book of Reference accompanying his survey.

The 19th-century farm buildings have been replaced by a new house and steading on the opposite side of the A827 road, though part of the courtyard survives, now used as a car park serving the hotel.

The farm and hotel continued to be held in a single tenancy into the 20th century.

The Inn is called Crofthouse on the 1862 OS map suggesting the names Crofthouse and Ben Lawers Inn remained interchangeable for some time.

Despite the old hostelry being more like a tavern the new hotel was labelled 'Temperance Hotel' in the 1898 OS map and continued thus into the 1980s.

Page last updated - 21/10/16