Jonathan & Denise >
What appears to be a path down to the shore is in fact the concrete roof slab of a culvert that carries a swift-flowing stream around rocky outcrops and down the beach to a point where it discharges below the strandline, so as to avoid the outfall becoming choked up with floating seaweed.
The culvert was first constructed in the late 19thC, but after falling into disrepair after WW2, the stream was – with increasing frequency and severity – often blocked by seaweed cast up by a storm, causing the water to back up until it threatened to flood houses further upstream. The culvert was rebuilt in about 2015, the outfall valve itself using a rather clever new technology.
Struthan a’ Bhaird means Stream of the Bard.
There’s some information I’ve gleaned about this feature that’s very interesting … well, to those interested in engineering and history … another time, perhaps.