We set off as usual at 12.45, nine of us in two cars and drove up to the car park in Greenside place in Leslie. One of the group remarked that they once had hangings here but it wasn't clear if they were flower baskets, pictures or the very worst members of the area's underbelly. We left the car park and set off on a section of the Monk's Walk, so called as it was once used by the members of monasteries in south of Fife as they ventured off to carry civilisation and the Christian word to the out laying places to the North including Kennoway , Cupar and across the river to Dundee and Tayside. We carried on to the High street and then across the viaduct where we met some little kids who wanted to know what we were doing and why some of us needed sticks. We then joined the network of paths and trail via this Leslie trail as the sign said. The other sign that caught my eye was one saying FORP which I thought must be Fife Organization of Roads and Paths or something but it is actually Friends Of Riverside Park, who are group of volunteers who look after the park etc. We followed this rather muddy part of the walk till we came to the River Leven and followed its bank taking us under the B969 road, across the little bridge and into the main car park. From there we strolled ( it got warmer) up the other side of the river and on passed the derelict shell of Leslie House. We stopped here to have a longer look at its sad state and agreed that it must have been a beautiful building in it's time.
It was built between 1667 and 1674 for the Duke of Rothes and became the seat of the Rothes family. It was called locally Villa de Rothes and became the centre of the village. It was such a fine house and is said to have rivalled Holyrood in size and glamour. It experienced various refurbishment more than one big fire, the last of which coming in 2009 leaving it in it's present sorry state. It is now thought to be in the hands of a developer who intends to create luxury flats but safety and planning issues have this on hold. We returned to the cars and went off for tea and scones at Alfresco in Glenrothes shopping centre where we also chose the tasks each of us would carry out on our summer trip. We had to pick the tasks for those who weren't with us thus ensuring that they got the worst tasks. Just kidding. We thoroughly enjoyed our day and the weather stayed fine. Roll on the next