The Bruce Oak!

The mighty Bruce Oak


Legend has it that The Bruce took shelter from pursuing enemies under the evergreen canopy, entertaining his troops with tales of valour.

The Ancient Oak Tree and why it's named the Bruce Oak

There's a statement about this ancient oak tree in the recent book entitled "100 Heritage Trees of Scotland". The Bruce Oak was 29ft in circumference and stood at a height of 18ft at the end of its life. A Bruce throne, has been made from the wood also Bruce sculptures, key rings etc.

Strathleven Artizans' Project salvaged all the timber and bark from this tree after it fell down because of a fire, and as a result of some medieval history research we discovered that King Robert the Bruce owned this particular estate about the time the tree was a sapling. This story resulted in the tree being known locally as 'The Bruce Tree'. Most of us are familiar with the story of Bruce killing John Comyn at Dumfries in 1306, but not everyone is aware that Sir Robert Fleming cut off Comyn's head to prove to Bruce that he was dispatched and the Flemings adopted the family slogan:

"Let the deed Show."

Thus Robert Fleming was then rewarded with the forfeited Comlyn's estate of Kirkintilloch, but he died before or at the Battle of Bannockburn. His son Sir Malcolm Fleming, and his spouse Lady Marjory were given the local estate of Strathleven at the river Leven, which at the time was called Kirkmichael and thereafter became known as the lands of Kirkmichael-Fleming at the river Leven beside the king's port of Murroch. Sir Malcolm Fleming of Kikmichael was the hereditary master of the royal household and Bruce appointed him and his wife as the foster parents of David Bruce, the son and heir of King Robert the Bruce. Sir Malcolm was also elavated to the Earldom of Wigton for his loyal services to David Bruce after they returned from exile in France. His son Thomas Fleming the 2nd Earl of Wigton died without issue, and the estates which we know as Strathleven were carried down to his cousin Sir Malcolm Fleming circa 1357.

With kind permission from Archie Miles the photographer of this tree for use on this page. To view many more beautiful photographs and information of famous historic trees please visit his website.