Sunset Kentallen pier, pretty holiday self catering cottages nearby, 4 miles from Glencoe

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Jan Hamilton of Duror's lovely photo of the Kentallen, Glencoe  cottage and bay. Her website click. Glencoe is part of the Outdoor Capital of the UK, near self catering cottages Port Appin feryy to Lismore, 30 minutes from the Kentallen self catering cottage Billy Currie's lovely photo of the young Deer in Glencoe. Click for website. Glencoe Mountain 30 minutes from our holiday self catering cottage Buchaille Etive Mor in Glencoe near self catering holiday cottages Evening from the Holly Tree Hotel, 400 yards from our Kentallen self catering cottage Arisaig, with Skye in the distance. A day out from Glencoe

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Glencoe self catering lochside cottage, in Kentallen bay near Oban, Fort William

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                                                  for Self catering   Very few lochside Cottages are near the most beautiful Glen in Scotland. This pretty lochside holiday cottage by Glencoe lies between Fort William and Oban. We overlook the Bay of Kentallen, Loch Linnhe not far from Ben Nevis. This is beautiful Appin country

Glencoe cottages

Some of  the Highland forces were ragged, undisciplined but of a fearsome prospect when charging over a hill waving their clan banners. This chaotic approach would not win the main battle  Bruce won on the basis of his troop’s preparation, careful training and tight control.  Notice also that Bruce kept the battle reserves closely under his own control.

So could the “wee folk”  be the Highland Clansmen who could not get into the main body of the fight, whom Bruce released at the right moment to destroy the remnants of the English army? It is entirely probable.


No reputable Scottish mediaeval historian believes that an organised body of Templar Knights, fighting monks, formally helped at Bannockburn. The Templars had been disbanded, they were on the run in Europe,  they would be burnt if caught by the English because they had no personal money of their own and were useless for ransom, Bruce’s reputation with the Pope would be worse that it was. Templar banners? Never.  

Originally, they were the most disciplined of fighting men, some Scots Knights may have fought at Acre in 1291 when they were driven out of the Holy Land. But in 1314 they were a spent force. Any fighting Knights would be elderly. There were up to 100 Templar properties in Scotland from which they drew rents, many set up in the time of David 1st. But there were few fighting Knights left, if any, probably less than 100

The Templars had a rule that they could not fight in nationalist wars. As Templars, the Knights were forbidden to kill other Christians, only infidels.

Scots historians of the Mediaeval period are violently opposed to the Templar Bannockburn stories, claiming that they were invented by  the French Masonic movement in the 16th century and romanticised by the Victorians.

Certainly Bruce was very religious as was the custom of the day.  But equally, there are no chroniclers of the period reporting Templar involvement in the Battle.

So many volunteers turned up for the Scots, that Bruce had to turn them away because he could not feed them all. But it is inconceivable that the Templars helped, however romantic the story sounds. The Victorian romanticists such as Sir Walter Scott have a lot to answer for, in distorting history.

Epilogue. Bruce’s heart taken on a Crusade.

Templars survived to become the Freemasons movement to-day. The Templar name St Clair, survives to this day as Sinclair. Robert the Bruce possibly died of the leprosy that frightened him. It was so feared as a disease that even as King he would have been isolated from others. More likely his skull and face were disfigured by bad scarring from deep wounds - indicated when his skull was later examined.

In the ancient tradition of Celtic High Kings, the heart of the Bruce was removed from his body after death. By his wish it was carried to the Spanish Crusade by his great friend and ally Sir James Douglas, and The Scottish Grand Master Templar, a Sinclair. They both died there while Bruce’s heart was thrown into the Muslim horde.  Later it was recovered and is to-day buried at his favourite Melrose Abbey. His body lies in Dunfermline Abbey.

I  am indebted to Dr. Chris Brown Phd, Scottish mediaeval battle historian for correcting the massive error in the story of  the Battle of Bannockburn and the fable of  the Knights Templar helping Bruce in his victory.

The facts: In 1314 Robert the Bruce’s brother Edward Bruce made an agreement with the Commander of the vital Stirling Castle - that if it were not relieved by mid-summer's day, it would be surrendered. Bruce calculated this would  result in a major battle with the English at Stirling. Bruce was an experienced guerrilla fighter, hit and run, no expert in major battle confrontations. But he did not want Edward 11 and his forces roaming all over the country at will, laying waste, he needed them brought to battle. Bannockburn was the result.


No one knows for sure the true size of the forces involved. Best guess is 20,000 English and 7,000 Scots. It is agreed that the Scots were massively out-numbered by the English. No one on the Scottish side had ever had experience of a large staged battle. But somebody of experience must have helped plan it.

The Scots were very cunning indeed. They knew the ground and they knew their foe would expect an easy victory. The Scots had chosen their defensive positions with care making use of bogs, a gorge and sloping terrain. Their troops were strongly prepared and fully trained. After a skirmish on the first day, the battle raged on day two. The English could not deploy properly on the narrow front and Bruce's spearmen held firm.

The Scots attacked before dawn, catching the English by surprise in their camp. The Scots advanced on foot, another surprise, drawing in the English horsemen. Another fable pointed out by Dr. Brown is the widely held theory propagated by the Victorian storytellers, that the Scots had dug ditches during the night, and the English knights impaled themselves on the Scottish pikes. How do you dig ditches in the night without disturbing the enemy, and how do you stop your own  troops from falling in as they advance?

The English archers, behind their own cavalry shot some of their own Knights in the back and were ordered to stop.


As the day progressed the English began to lose the struggle.  Towards the end the remaining English forces ran off, when they saw a large crowd of so-called "wee folk" come over the hill waving banners. These were described by the battle chroniclers as the scavengers and camp followers who follow all battles for the spoils.

But there is considerable argument about this. It must have been the first time that a big army ran away from camp followers. This would have been the first time that camp followers ever banners announcing their presence. Something odd here. Very, very odd.

Using common sense, how about this? The impending battle was known all over Scotland for 4 months in advance. All Scots clans wanted to join in. Bruce was close to the Islesmen of Argyll and the West coast clans, very close. They had saved him countless times from those hunting him. Most of the big clans took part in the main Battle. The MacDonalds, for example from this time onwards until Culloden 330 years later, would claim a position on the right flank of Highland armies as of right.  (That’s on the odd occasion when they fought on the side of the Scottish Crown!)

King Robert the Bruce from the Clydesdale Banknote. In truth his head and face were scarred from battleaxe wounds

Bannockburn, King Robert the Bruce’s heroic Scottish Battle against the odds.

The Knights Templars played no part

King Robert the Bruce had a good year in 1307. He won lands in the South-west of Scotland after years on the run. He demolished his major enemies the Mc Dougalls. He won support from Scottish nobles and the MacDonalds and Campbells of the West.  

By 1314 he had captured Edinburgh castle. Edward 1st, his great foe had died, leaving his weak son as heir, Edward 11.  Until now, Bruce had survived a civil war and his forces won only  through hit and run tactics. He had lost his two big fights at Methven and Falkirk. This was to be his biggest Battle of all time.It is certain the the Knights Templar played no part - they were finished by then.


and the MacDonalds of Glencoe

Feared Scottish   Schiltron video