CANCELLED – Dragonfly event: Sunday 26th June, 2-4pm. The Met Office is still forecasting heavy rain during the afternoon, which is far from ideal for dragonflies. We have decided to cancel this event. Sorry about that.
Castle Loch’s ‘pop-up’ visitor centre at Lochfield Cottage: 12noon-4pm. Summer weekends throughout June, July and August Lochfield Cottage will be open for visitors. The cottage includes information about the loch: wildlife, history, the castle, curling and the community buyout; also children’s activities, self-service refreshments, ice creams and toilets. The cottage is located next to the loch side car park on the A709 and about 15-minutes walk on the loch side trail from Lochmaben. Why not bring a picnic, or pick up some sandwiches from the baker on Lochmaben High Street and come and walk the 3-mile circuit of the loch? Please note the centre will not open if the weather is very bad.
Posted 30 May – The full 3 mile circuit of the loch path and boardwalk is fully open and pretty dry throughout. Darren
Volunteering activities: There are no volunteering events in June
Winner of RSPB Nature of Scotland Community Initiative 2015
Winner of DG Life ‘People of the Year’ Award 2014
Welcome to Castle Loch, the largest and shallowest of the lochs in Lochmaben, Dumfries & Galloway. The site is one of the earliest Local Nature Reserves (LNR) and also a site of national and international importance for its birdlife with a whole list of designations, including Site of Scientific Interest, Ramsar Site and Special Protected Area. The loch is a fine location to visit at any time of the year, offering fine opportunities to see bird and wildlife, take walk, fish or take to the waters under sail. The site offers the chance to see breeding Willow Tit at their northern reaches, however it comes into its own during the winter season with the migration of Pink-footed Geese from Iceland and Greenland, along with Greylag Geese and Goosanders.
The ruins of Lochmaben Castle are found on promontory at the south end of the loch and offer an added attraction to experience first-hand the important historical connections of the area. The castle is a former stronghold of the Bruce family and is reckoned to be the best example of an Edwardian (Edward I, the Hammer of the Scots) Peel left in Scotland.
In 2013 the Castle Loch was put up for sale. The Castle Loch Advisory Committee provided the basis of a local Community Trust whose aim was to purchase the Castle Loch and its environs for the Community. The steering committee successfully raised the funds needed and Castle Loch Lochmaben Community Trust (CLLCT) took ownership of the site in January 2014.
Other recreational facilities located on the edge of the loch are the beautiful Victory Park, a bowling green and all weather tennis courts. There is an attractive path round most of the loch, which passes Lochmaben Castle and a Bird Hide, returning to the town on a quiet lane with fine views over the water and hills. Numerous fishing piers are found along the Lochmaben to Dalton road side of the loch, while a gently sloping path down to the lochside fishing pier, enabling wheelchair users to fish at the loch, is at the A709 car park. Annandale Sailing Club is a small friendly club and the loch can provide both sheltered waters for the nervous beginner or an interesting test for those who appreciate the subtleties of inland racing. Please note that the only motorised craft allowed on the loch are those of the Sailing Club rescue boats and Water Bailiff.