Hopefully, you are now in Helge’s Hole!
Cluny Hill Hollow or Hell or Helgy’s Hole as it’s sometimes called has many legendary tales associated with it and with help from the Annals of the Royal Burgh of Forres, we have outlined them below!
A dry hole?
Mysteriously, although the hollow was the natural site for all surrounding drainage from the hills, it was always found to be dry!
How it got its name?
It is thought that a young lady, during a fit of passion or intoxication on the part of her sweetheart was struck and killed. The young man was condemned to death. On the day of his execution in Elgin, a large number of Forres shoemakers went to witness the final penalty. To their horror, the executioner was a member of their own craft – a man called Helge from Inverness. On his way home, they attacked and killed him. On his body being found by the authorities, burial in Forres Churchyard was refused. He was thus taken to this curious hole – which is why many believe it got its name.
Another reason for its name could simply be down to sport. In bygone days, shinty matches would take place at the foot of Cluny or the Cloven Hills. Many a tussle took place with the teammates aiming to reach this spot, where you now stand, with the ball. Then it was known as Hale’s Hole or the ‘Goal of Success.’ The successful team would delight in reaching this spot whilst the losing side would tell their friends they never got near ‘Hell’s Hole.’
Dig for gold?
It is believed that in this hollow there were riches including gold to be found. Have a look around – what do you think?
Most recently, this area has been looked after by the Rotary Club of Forres who have installed picnic tables and barbecues. It is an ongoing project.
You now need to return to Instruction 14 on your trail.