Tam O?Shanter Cottage, which was probably built about 300 years ago by a heath squatter, is situated at the edge of Bidston Hill near to the rear entrance to Flaybrick Cemetery. As far as we know it had no particular claim to fame until 1837 when Richard Lea the occupier at that time embellished the building with a carved stone slab depicting the Robert Burns poem ?Tam O?Shanter? in which Tam pursued by witches sought to reach the bridge in the belief that the witches would not dare to cross running water. Tam indeed escaped but his mare poor Maggie lost her tail.
In a book ?Auld Lang Syne?, by Harry B. Neilson, printed in 1935, mention is made that the date 1837 can be seen on a stone garden wall of Tam O?Shanter cottage. It is stated that Richard Lea cut the date on the wall and carved the Tam O?Shanter stone and also the weather vane with its animals heads, lion, dog etc. It is said he made them in his spare time to decorate his cottage. Part of the cottage is roofed with thick stone flags, which in past times was a common method of covering buildings in Bidston, where stone was plentiful.
The book lists other farms which were on the Bidston Hill heathland in the year 1840. At the time the size of the farm was 6 acres.