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Kilkerran House

Kilkerran estate, 13 miles southeast of Ayr, is widely considered to be the home of the Fergusson Clan, (although there are other branches of the family). The Fergusson name most likely comes from 'Fergus' a Prince from Galloway who lived in the 12th Century, whose descendant was the Earl of Carrick.

Kilkerran House

 

Kilkerran House

The first Fergusson in Ayrshire was recorded in 1381. Their original home, was situated above the village of Dailly, dating back to 1400.

They moved to Barclanachan 1686, a former Kennedy household, now the site of the current mansion house. This was rebuilt after 1695 by Sir John Fergusson of Kilkerran, the first baronet, and enlarged in 1814 and 1874. It contains the family portraits of eight generations and many relics of former chiefs.

Many Fergusson's had distinguished military careers, such as Sir James Fergusson, injured at Inkerman in 1854, where his friend Lieutenant-Colonel James Hunter-Blair was killed. At Straiton, a monument stands on top of Craigengower Hill, commemorating James Hunter Blair of Blairquhan Castle.

Sir James Fergusson went on to become under-secretary at the India Office in 1866, Governor of South Australia in 1869, and Governor of New Zealand in 1873. He was killed in an earthquake in Jamaica in 1907.

Kilkerran is a private estate still owned by the Fergusson's. The only part of the estate open to the public is the Walled Garden, now run as a touring caravan park.