Scottish shale Scottish shale

Westfield Rows

Former parish and county:
Parish of Auchterderran, Fife
Local authority:
Perhaps built early 1880's?
Cleared in the 1950's after period of dereliction?
Current status of site:
Farmland: landscape altered; perhaps having been opencast?

Presumably built by the Westfield Oil Company Ltd for those employed at Westfield & Capeldrae Oil Works. A sale note (see below) of 1886 lists 28 double houses for workmen.

The O.S. map shows three rows with eight homes and one row with ten, each with two rooms.

  • Location map
  • Detailed maps
  • Newspaper references

      The WESTFIELD OIL WORKS and SHALE PITS. On the LANDS of PITKENNY and WESTFIELD, in the PARISH of AUCHTERDERRAN, along with LEASES of the SHALE. & c. The Works are connected with the Capeldrae Branch of the North British Railway by a line belonging to the Work. There are 80 retorts (Young & Beilby's Patent) built in Two benches, planned for distilling 100 tons of thereby of Shale per day, with the necessary appliances, including Engines, Condensers, &c. The Lands of Pitkinny and Westfield adjoin, and the Shale of the one property may be worked by Pits in the other. There are 28 Double Houses for Workmen belonging to the Work. The area under lease extends to upwards of 550 Acres. The Shale has been opened up, and lies in connection with a five-feet seam of coal which forms the roof, and with which the Retorts and engines are fired. The yield of Crude Oil per ton of Shale is upwards of 35 Gallons, and the Shale us understood to be suitable for Gas-making purposed. For further particulars application can be made to H. HORSBURGH, C.A., 46 Castle Street Edinburgh with whom sealed offers must be lodged no later than 17th January 1887.

      The Scotsman, 30th December 1886


      IMPORTANT EXTENSIVE PUBLIC UN-RESERVED SALE OF FIXED AND MOVEABLE PLANT, BUILDINGS, AND ERECTIONS, AT WESTFIELD OIL COMPANY'S WORKS NEAR LOCHGELLY, FIFE ON THURSDAY the 28th JUNE 1888. Mr. GEORGE H. LORD has received instructions form H.M. HORSBURGH, Esq., C.A. Edinburgh, Official Liquidator, to Catalogue and SELL by PUBLIC ROUP, without reserve on the above date, the Whole of the Valuable FIXED and MOVEABLE MACHINERY, PLANT, BUILDINGS and ERECTIONS belonging to the WESTFIELD OIL COMPANY LIMITED, now in liquidation, and contained on the PREMISES at WESTFIELD, near Lochgelly, Fife, and comprising; - 2 Iron Benches of 40 retorts each, Young & Bielbey's Patent, with Mains, Condensers, Exhausters, &c., 14 Steam Boilers, 5 H.P. Engines, Pipes, W.I. Rails, 4 Steam Donkey Pumps, 2 Exhaust Fans, 2 and a half Tons Derrick Crane, with Pumping and Winding Gear for 3 pits; 12 Tanks, cisterns, Haulage Gearing, Hoist, Coke Tower, Stores, Office Furniture, Scrap Iron and Sundries. Also, Brick, Stone and Lime Work, forming Buildings, Erections and Chimney –Stalks. Sale to commence at 12 Noon. Catalogues to be ready shortly, and may be obtained on application to the Auctioneer. AUCTIONEER'S OFFICES AND MACHINERY DEPOT, 63 AND 70 COWGATE, DUNDEE.

      The Scotsman, 1st June 1888