Place-name:Limekiln Burn
Suggested Meaning:burn named after limekilns at Guelt Lime Works
First elementlimekiln ‘lime kiln’
Second elementScots burn stream”
Blaeu Coila (1654):
OS Name Books (1855-57):Limekiln Burn
Location:Ordnance Survey (1885-1900)
Earlier forms
Fleck Burn?

Limekiln Burn

The Ordnance Survey Namebook Entry (1855-57) for Limekiln Burn reads –

A Small Burn forming a porti [portion] of the boundary between Old and New Cumnock, after a short course it falls into Guelt Water

Map 1:OS Map Limekilns Burn| Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland

It flows northwards from just beyond the Guelt Lime Works to join the Guelt Water and forms a boundary between the parishes of New Cumnock to the east and Old Cumnock to the west.

Looking north from top of the limekilns (Robert Guthrie)

The burn takes its name from the limekilns at the Guelt Lime Works. The kilns sit on the New Cumnock side of the boundary and the limestone quarry sits on the Old Cumnock side of the boundary on the lands of the Over Guelt, from Welsh gwellt Old Welsh guelt ‘grass, pasture’ [1].

Map 2: OS Map Guelt Water | Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland

Fleck Burn

However it is interesting to note that in the OS Name Book all three authorities for the mode of spelling of the name, i.e. Robert McNaught, tenant (Craigshiel); John Lammie, Clickluoie (Clocklowie) and Mr McGregor, New Cumnock call it Fleck Burn. A reference is made to OS Name Book Entry for the parish of Old Cumnock where the name Limekiln Burn is said to appear on an Estate Map and therefore wins the day.

A possible Gaelic origin is fliche ‘moisture, wetness’ [2] and is found in Fleuch Larg in Wigtonshire which W.J. Watson considers to be Fleuchlarg ‘wet pass’ near Gatehouse of Fleet, Wigtonshire [3] and Sir Herbert Maxwell as Fleugh Larg as Gaelic fliuch learg ‘wet hill-side’ [4].

While Scots flake, fleck ‘hurdle, piece of framework’ [5] seems unlikely.

[1] New Cumnock Place-Names | Guelt Water
[2] Edward Dwelly,Illustrated Gaelic-English Illustrated Dictionary | fliche
[3] W. J. Watson, Celtic Place-Names of Scotland | Fleuchlarg
[4] Sir Herbert Maxwell, Place-Names of Galloway | Fleugh Larg
[5] Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. | flake, fleck
By Permission of National Library of Scotland
Images used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) licence.
Map 1: Ordnance Survey Maps – Six-inch 2nd and later editions, Scotland, 1892-1960| Limekiln Burn
Map 2: Ordnance Survey Maps – 25 inch 2nd and later editions, Scotland, 1892-1949|Guelt Lime Works
Ordnance Survey Name Books
By Permission of Scotland’s Places
Ayrshire OS Name Books (1855-57) Vol. 49|Limekiln Burn
Ayrshire OS Name Books (1855-57) Vol. 52 , Old Cumnock|Limekiln Burn