Dundee’s Step Row

The Courier & Advertiser (Fife Edition) - - COMMENT -

Keith Walker of Dundee has been in touch and says: “In the 1700s an old track called the Fuer’s Road ran south from the cliff top track which we now know as the Perth Road in Dundee.

“The fuer’s track ran down to the rugged shore line and the quarry of Mag­dalen Yard. This area is now over­looked by a red phone box! The road is called Step Row, but how did it get its name?

“I was read­ing a short bi­og­ra­phy of Alexan­der Mon­cur in an old Vic­to­rian news­pa­per. His fam­ily lived in Inch­ture but moved to Dundee to live in one of the two hum­ble houses which had just been built in 1978. The houses were be­ing con­structed on the steep slope on the top half of thte west side of the lane.

“As the hous­ing was built on the steep slope each of them, as they were be­ing erected, stood a few feet higher than its lower neigh­bour. The ten­ants looked at their hum­ble abodes and agreed that the lane should be called Stepped Raw – Step Row.

“Alex Mon­cur was a hard work­ing and highly thought of busi­ness­man work­ing in the weavers’ trade. When he mar­ried into the iron fam­ily, he bought a house in Miller’s Wynd which he con­verted into a work­shop.

“By 1865, Bailie Mon­cur and his son built two man­sions at the Rock­field on the Perth Road – Nos 299 and 301 called East and West Rock­field.”

Keith Walker has pro­duced this il­lus­tra­tion of the poet Wil­liam McGon­a­gall sur­vey­ing the scene at Step Row, Dundee. See left for more.

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