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Gatehouse of Fleet

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Gatehouse of Fleet town is situated in Galloway southwest Scotland, 30 miles east of Stranraer, 54 miles southwest of Dumfries, just off the main A75 road.

Gatehouse of Fleet attracts visitors for its Old Mill visitor centre with diner, Cally Palace for golf and restaurant, walk to the Rutherford Monument, visits to Cardoness Castle, and Inns and hotels for drinks and meals. The town was also used for The Wicker Man horror film with Britt Eckland, Christopher Lee, and Edward Woodward, Old Anwoth Church 1 mile west was also used in the film.

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The image top is looking up Fleet Street towards the town centre with the Fleet Gallery and the Ship Inn on the left. The Ship Inn has a restaurant and rooms.

St Mary's Church is also on the left , just past the Ship Inn, with a scenic seating area next to the Church. This Church was built in 1840.

The image right is from the main parking area in the Town centre looking at the entrance to the Mill on the Fleet visitor centre with a shop and diner.

This was a Cotton Mill built in 1788 with a water wheel on the gable end of the building driving the machinery to spin the cotton. The Mill closed in the 1930s. It was restored by the local council in 1980 and opened to the public in 1981.

The Church at the gates here seems to be used for small local businesses selling local hand made craft.

The image right is looking up the High Street towards the Clock Tower. The Bank of Fleet Hotel is situated in the middle of the High Street. The Hotel offers rooms, drinks, meals and has a beer garden.

The Murry Arms Hotel is at the top of the High Street next to the Clock Tower. The Hotel has a selection of rooms and a restaurant.

The Clock Tower was completed in 1871 of local whinstone with granite trim from Dalbeattie Quarry.

The Masonic Arms is on Ann Street by the Clock Tower with a contemporary dining room, conservatory, beer garden, and bar.

The Cally Palace Hotel and Golf Resort is situated to the south of the Town in a country estate. The hotel is also a popular place for lunch or afternoon tea. This former Country Mansion was converted to a Hotel in 1934. Wiki History Page.

The less expensive Gatehouse Golf Club is situated on the northeast side of the town.

The 55ft high Rutherford Monument is a popular walk from the village, about 3 and a half miles round trip. The monument is in honour of a minister from from this area who became Professor of Divinity at St Andrews University. Walk Information with Images.

Cardoness Castle is situated 1 mile west of Gatehouse of Fleet, next to the main road with a visitor centre and has great views from the top. This is a late 1400s tower house built for the MacCulloch's, a family known for deadly feuds with their neighbour's.

Gatehouse of Fleet History

1470s - Cardoness Castle is built on the west side of the Water of Fleet for the MacCulloch's.

1610 - the wooden Fleet Bridge is built over the Water of Fleet for the increasing numbers of people traveling to the port town of Portpatrick for trade with Ireland.

The Murray's owned the land on the east side of the river, so built a gait house / inn by the bridge to make money out of the passing trade. This is where the towns name originated - Gatehouse of Fleet.

1721 - the wooden bridge is washed away in a storm.

1729 - the first stone bridge is built.

1760s - Kings Head Inn is built, later named the Murry Arms.

1765 - James Murray has Cally country mansion built on the east side of the village.

1778 - Robert Williamson, inventor of clockwork mechanisms set up a workshop in the town.

1794 - Robert Williamson died in a fire at the workshop.

1790 - Lower Birtwhistle Mill is built, now the Mill on the Fleet.

1790s - the town had four cotton mills, copper mine, a brass foundry, brewery, brickworks, soap factory, and tanneries.

1794 - the Ship Inn is built.

1819 - the artist John Faed is born in the area.

1824 - Alexander Murray had the Fleet Canal built from the Water of Fleet to the towns small harbour named Port Macadam, a short distance south of the town. The harbour had around 150 ships visit per year, it is now used by small pleasure craft.

1840 - St Mary's church is built.

1840s - the copper mine is closed.

1861 - Big Water Viaduct is built for the railway about 6 miles north with a stop for the town.

1871 - Clock Tower is built in the town centre.

1921 - Gatehouse golf course is opened and war memorial built.

1934 - Cally house is converted to a hotel and golf course.

1968 - the Railway closed. The Big Water Viaduct area is now a National Park for walking and cycling.

1986 - A75 bypass is completed reducing traffic through the town.

1919 - Lower Mill is restored to serve as a visitor attraction named Mill on the Fleet.

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