The name Queenshill was established after a visit from Mary Queen of Scots. She was fleeing from her defeat at the battle of Langside in 1568 and is said to have stopped to rest and take refreshments here before sailing to England. Nineteen years later Mary was brought to trial for treason and when found guilty her cousin
Queen Elizabeth I ordered her to be killed.
In the early 19th century, the estate became the home of Colonel Walter Montgomerie Neilson, son of the late James Beaumont Neilson, Esq., the celebrated inventor of the 'Hot-Blast.' Not as strange as it sounds!
James Beaumont Neilson was a Scottish inventor whose hot-blast process greatly increased the efficiency of smelting iron. This significantly reduced the amount of coal required to make iron, and increased production, meeting the demands of the burgeoning railway and ship building industries. Neilson struggled through the courts, to defend his patent and to license his invention but ultimately succeeded and became very rich. He died on Queenshill Estate. His son, Walter Montgomerie Neilson, erected the monument to him - a spectacular local landmark at the top of Barstobrick hill.