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Lochranza is situated at the Northern Tip of Arran, the loch contains a small island with a ruined castle, which was mentioned by Sir Walter Scott

Lochranza is associated with a fairy legend. According to the tale a midwife was collecting a harvest from the side of the loch with her neighbours. Suddenly a large yellow frog appeared, and one of her neighbours went to kill it. She stopped her, thinking that the frog seemed to have an air of the otherworld about it.

Lochranza and Castle: from a modern paintingLochranza and Castle: from a modern paintingThe next day she was back at the loch side when a young boy appeared from out of nowhere riding a grey mare. He told her that she had saved the queen of the fairies, who had been disguised as the yellow frog. He offered her safe passage to the land of the fairies, and she mounted the horse and rode into the other world.

While in fair Elfland she became a midwife to the fairy queen.

There are other fairy associations in the area. Further North is Fairy Dell, perhaps once seen as an entrance to the other world.

Lochranza is to the far North of the island, off the A841.

Daniel Parkinson

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