Culross

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Culross is a Village in the Fife area of Scotland, 25 miles west of Edinburgh, 17 miles east of Stirling.

The Village is popular for its Palace, Tolbooth, Market Cross, Abbey, Lockit Well, and Hanging Gardens Viewpoint. Culross Old Church is about a 1 mile walk northwest of the Village, and Dunimarle Castle, on the west side of the Village, can be visited at times. A notice board is placed by the west side Car Park when the Castle & Gardens can be visited.

Culross Map 54 Large Images
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See also a large Click On Map for the area Top Attractions.

Camping & Touring Parks in the area.

The image top is of Culross from the large Parkland and Kids Play area. The large west side Car Park is by the Parkland. There is also another large Car Park on the east side of the Village. This Parkland was where the Firth of Forth used to come up to, allowing ships to get close to Culross centre.

The second image is of Culross Palace built from the late 1500s for Sir George Bruce, Laird of Carnock. Bruce made his fortune as a Merchant trading with other Forth ports, UK, and Europe. His main Industries were Coal Mining and Salt Production from Sea Water.

Bruce had a Coal Mine at Culross that ran under the Sea, about 150 feet deep? claimed to be the first Coal Mine in the World to do so. The Palace can be visited most days with an entrance fee.

In front of the Palace is a statue of Admiral Cochrane. Cochrane was born in Ayrshire in 1775, spending his early years at Abbey House in Culross, home of the Earls of Dundonald. His time in the Royal Navy saw him win a number of battles during the Napoleonic Wars. He was Naval Commander-in-Chief of the Chilean Navy in 1818, helping end Spanish Colonial rule. Cochrane died in 1860, with him being buried in Westminster Abbey, London.

Next to the Palace is the Tolbooth or Town House. The Town House was built in 1626 with the Clock Tower added in 1783. There are Cells in the building used to hold criminals and women accused of being Witches in the 1600s. Culross is said to have had more than its fair share of Witches. The first floor now has a Shop and Art.

In front of the Town House is the Tron, used for weighing goods such as Coal and Salt. Much of the Coal and Salt would be loaded onto boats to be sold around the UK and Europe.

Culross Market Cross is a short walk east of the Town House, up the Street named Mid Causeway. The Market Cross was erected in 1588, with the top section replaced in 1819.

The houses in this area seem to be the oldest in the Village. Take away the cars, and its like being back in the 1600s or 1700s, why Culross is used in so many Films and TV such as Outlander. Culross Outlander Locations.

A few hundred yards walk up the steep Tanhouse Brae and Kirk Street, takes you to Culross Abbey, founded in 1217, free to visit. The main attraction in the Abbey is the Bruce Vault, where Sir George Bruce and his family are buried.

Back down Kirk Street from the Abbey, is Erskine Brae, where you can find the Lockit Well. This was the early water supply for the Village, that could be turned on and off.

Up Erskine Brae is the Hanging Gardens Viewpoint. Trees now spoil the view that once allowed you to look out over the Firth of Forth towards Edinburgh.

The West Kirk / Old Church is about 1 mile northwest of the Hanging Gardens following signs. This was the main Church in Culross from the time it was built in the 1500s, till the Abbey Church became the main place of worship in 1633.

The Graveyard at the West Kirk contains a number of strange Headstones, from a time Sculls and Bones were used to decorate them. There has never been a credible reason given as to why such strange Headstones were created.

Back down in the Village centre, just east of the Town House, is the Red Lion Inn, ideal for refreshments after walking up and down the steep Braes of Culross. The Inn, built in the 1600s, also serves Pub Food.

Looking down on the west side Car Park, is Dunimarle Castle. At times, you can visit the Chapel, Gardens, and Castle Tower. There are signs at the Entrance by the Car Park when the Castle is open to the public. You have to walk up from the Car Park and pay the Gardener/ Tour Guide. The building seen today was built for the Erskine family in the 1840s, on the site of an earlier Castle of Lord Macduff, a prominent character in Shakespeare's Macbeth.

Culross History

500s - Culross is said to have been founded by Saint Serf, becoming the main port in the area.

900s - the original Dunimarle Castle was built at Culross for Lord Macduff, Thane of Fife. Macduff is now best known as a character in Shakespeare's Macbeth. Shakespeare has Lady Macduff and her Children murdered at Dunimarle Castle by Macbeth.

1217 - Culross Abbey was founded by Malcolm I, Earl of Fife.

1500s - the West Kirk was built as the Parish Church.

1560s - the Reformation in Scotland began making Catholic Worship illegal, leading to the destruction of many Abbeys. Some Abbeys were spared destruction to serve as Protestant Churches.

1588 - the Market Cross was erected in Culross.

1500s late - Culross Palace was built for Sir George Bruce, Laird of Carnock. Bruce made his fortune from Coal Mining and producing Salt from Sea Water.

1617 - King James VI visited Culross Palace.

1622 - the Town House / Tolbooth was built in Culross.

1633 - the Abbey Church at Culross is used as the Parish Church after the West Kirk falls into ruin.

1600s - many women from Culross are accused of being Witches, locked in the Attic of the Town House awaiting trial. Those convicted met a gruesome end, by hanging, fire, stoned, or crushing. Some women were killed using a combination of these execution methods.

1840s - Dunimarle Castle on the west side of Culross is rebuilt for the Erskine Family. Castle History.

1928 - Culross Palace was uninhabited.

1930s - the National Trust for Scotland begins work to preserve Culross Village, with the Palace soon restored to serve as a Tourist Attraction.

1971 - Culross is used in the film Kidnapped starring Michael Caine, with many more films and TV series using the Village from then on, including Outlander in 2014.

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