Lady Well – Glasgow, Scotland - Atlas Obscura

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Lady Well

This ancient holy well is older than much of the city that surrounds it.  


Perhaps even before Glasgow city was founded, this medieval spring has been quietly gurgling its way through history. The well is situated in an unlikely spot in Scotland’s largest city. At the end of the appropriately named Ladywell Street, the well’s small niche is built into the western wall of the Glasglow Necropolis and Tennent’s Brewery, home to the UK’s largest beer attraction.

There used to be 16 of these watery founts across the city in 1736, but few have survived into the present. The Lady Well is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and visitors will often drop coins in the well as offerings. The well initially drew water from Merchant’s Park, which would have been outside the city’s walls during the Middle Ages. Roman soldiers perhaps even refreshed themselves at the well during the construction of the Antonine Wall.

Lady Well underwent several reconstructions before it was finally capped (for sanitary reasons) towards the beginning of the 20th-century—most notably by the Merchants House, a local chapter of guilds that perform charitable works, in 1836 and again in 1874. Its neighbor, Tennent’s Brewery, had the well refurbished in 1983. 

Know Before You Go

Along John Knox St, you'll find a point where three roads converge: Wishart St, Drygate, and Ladywell St (which doesn't have a sign). There is currently a sign for the Lady Well pointing you in the right direction. From there, walk to the end of Ladywell St. In a niche on the wall to your left, you'll see the well. Note: since the well was capped, there is no water flowing; it's completely dry.

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