The inscription is very hard to read, only an occasional word can now be traced and I have Sheila A. Scott's book Peeblesshire Monumental Inscriptions - pre-1855 to thank for the text. Once I consulted the book I could even deciper some of the text on the stone. She doesn' mention the date of the gravestone but by closely looking at it I could see the year 1798.
The gravestone belongs to John Allan Leat Col (which is Colonel) Master in Collie Burn. This probably means he was in charge at Coalyburn Mine, which is the open cast mine the remnants of which can still be seen in our neighbouring field. The nearest house to ours is in fact called Coalyburn, so this gravestone is of very local interest.
His gravestones is adorned with this wonderful compass rose
as well as this circle of instruments which include (again according to Sheila Scott) 2 picks, a shovel, hammer and a couple of wedges, no doubt the tools of his trade.
This is the reverse of his gravestone with pillars, a winged (although the wings are hard to distinguish) soul and crossbones. There was also text on this side, now sadly lost to us. A detail of the top of this side can be seen at the very top of this post and became my blip for today!