Torwood Blue Pool – Falkirk, Scotland - Atlas Obscura

Torwood Blue Pool

The mystery of this small, brick pond eluded its possibly only investigator until his death. 


Hidden in a clearing in Scotland’s Tor Wood Forest, the Torwood Blue Pool is a man-made brick pool of unknown purpose that fascinated a local man until his dying day.

The pool itself is 20-feet in diameter and filled with a varying level of what was once, surprisingly blue water. At only about 12 feet deep, the brick and mortar pool is not a bottomless conundrum, but its builders and original use are seemingly lost to the (fairly recent) ages. Enter local blue pool investigator Nigel C. Turnbull who would devote much of his later personal life to delving into the spot’s origin.

Turnbull first saw the pool in 1961 when he was only 10 years old. When he rediscovered the spot at the age of 45, its secrets got their hooks in him. Over the next few years, Turnbull would look into every facet of the pool from the make-up of its water, to the debris at the bottom, to its ever-changing liquid volume. He collected eyewitness accounts of the pool and tried to link it to other industrial works nearby, each step recorded in detail on his website. Unfortunately Turnbull passed away in 2012 at the age of 61, never truly confirming the purpose of the pool.

Known by locals as the ‘Blue Pool’ or ‘Torwood Blue Pool’ This sub-structure has been a local mystery for many years. It is actually a redundant break pressure chamber and valve house, it was built c.1910 and was part of the Grangemouth Town Council water supply from North Thirds Reservoir to the town of Grangemouth. The original Building Warrant for this is held in Falkirk Archive, Callender House, under Planning Dept/Stirling County Council/Local Authorities Group Yellow Series. Where is titled ‘Quarter House Break Pressure Chamber’.


Know Before You Go

This is virtually impossible to locate without the assistance of a GPS device. Larbert rail station is the closest train depot. A car will only get you so far, there is a 10-20 minute walk through Torwood.

The path is uneven, muddy, and at times hard to follow. There is limited signage, none of which directs you to the pool specifically. It would appear the area is used for off road cycling.

Wear sensible shoes and choose a dry day. Glen Road is a gravel lane that will take you past Torwood Castle and eventually to a path to the pool. There are private residences here and no parking.

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