An image drawn for the campaign to save Wallace's Well, Robroyston, from being destroyed by housing developers. The medieval well at Robroyston is believed to have been used by Wallace in his final days of freedom as he was captured nearby. William Wallace was seized in the house of Ralph Rae by Sir John Menteith who discovered the hiding place of the patriot at Robroyston through the treacherous information of Jack Short, his servant. Menteith came under cover of night with a contingent of henchmen and after a violent scuffle in which Wallace’s valiant companion, Kerly, was slain, Wallace himself was finally overpowered. Menteith promptly handed his prisoner over to Sir John de Segrave who quickly transported him to London where he was brutally executed.
Menteith was well rewarded for his part in this treachery: he received land to the value of one hundred pounds. But the body of water on his lands has ever since been referred to by Scotsmen as “Lake” Menteith rather than “Loch” Menteith, an intentional slur on his name ensuring that his betrayal should never be forgotten.
The document shown at the top of the sketch, known as the Wallace letter, is from King Philip IV of France to his officials at the Vatican and mentions Wallace by name. It was issued on the 7th November 1300 and was in Wallace’s possession on the night of his capture and has been held in the Tower of London ever since. The letter from the French king asks his agents in Rome to help Wallace in business with Pope Boniface VIII. It suggests Wallace intended to travel to Rome, although it is not known what his business there was.