Coordinates: 56°04′19″N 3°26′21″W / 56.07192°N 3.43930°W / 56.07192; -3.43930

Scottish Gaelic: Dùn Phàrlain[1]
Scots: Dunfaurlin[2]
Auld Grey Toun[3]
Dunfermline Pics.jpg
Top: Town skyline, Top Left: Dunfermline High Street, Bottom Left: Andrew Carnegie House, Right: Dunfermline City Chambers, Bottom: Italian Garden, Pittencrieff Park
Dunfermline is located in Fife

 Dunfermline shown within Fife
Area  7.07 sq mi (18.3 km2)
Population 46,430 [4]
    - Density  1,498 /sq mi (578 /km2)
OS grid reference NT105875
Council area Fife
Lieutenancy area Fife
Country Scotland
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district KY11, KY12
Dialling code 01383
Police Fife
Fire Fife
Ambulance Scottish
EU Parliament Scotland
UK Parliament Dunfermline and West Fife
Scottish Parliament Dunfermline West
Mid Scotland and Fife
List of places: UK • Scotland •

Dunfermline (About this sound listen ; Scots: Dunfaurlin, Scottish Gaelic: Dùn Phàrlain) is a town and former Royal Burgh in Fife, Scotland, on high ground 3 miles (4.8 km) from the northern shore of the Firth of Forth. According to a 2008 estimate, Dunfermline has a population of 46,430, making it the second-biggest settlement in Fife. Part of the town's name comes from the Gaelic word "dun" meaning a fortified hill. The other parts, "ferm" and "lyn", are unclear, although "ferm" may have been an alternative name for the tower burn and "lyn", a pool or casade. Together, this may suggest the site of a fortification between the Ferm Burn and the Lyne Burn to the south.[citation needed]

The earliest known settlement in the Dunfermline area was during the Neolithic period. However, it was not until the Bronze Age, that the area grew in importance. Remains of Cist Burials are known to have existed at both Crossford and Masterton. The first written record of the town was made in the 11th century, when Malcolm III, King of Scotland (1068–1093) married his second wife, Margaret at the church in Dunfermline between 1068 and 1070. Dunfermline became a capital of Scotland, when Malcolm III moved his royal court here from Perthshire. This city status was held until the death of James I at Perth in 1437. His wife, Margaret was responsible for bringing Roman Catholicism into Scotland and establishing a new church dedicated to the Holy Trinity which evolved into Dunfermline Abbey under her son, David I in 1128. The graveyard of this Abbey eventually became the burial place to many of Scotland's Kings and Queens, taking over this role from Iona.

Since the early 20th century, the most famous "son" of Dunfermline has been the wealthy industrialist, businessman, and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. He was the central figure in promoting its early 20th-century urban renewal, and his financial legacy is still of major importance.

Dunfermline serves as the service centre for the west Fife area. The town retains much of its historic significance with buildings such as Dunfermline Abbey and Palace, while providing a range of more modern facilities including theatres, large public parks, a sports centre and athletics ground, golf courses, major shopping facilities and a leisure park with a multiplex cinema, a ten-pin bowling alley and a variety of restaurants. Dunfermline is also situated on the northern spur of the Fife Circle rail line and the intersection of the M90 and A92, making it highly accessible by multiple modes of transport. The Carnegie College is based in the town with its main campus at Halbeath. Employment is focused in the service sector, with the largest employer being BSKYB. Other large employers in the town include HBOS (finance), Taylor Wimpey (housebuilder), Dunfermline Building Society (finance) and CR Smith (window manufacturers).



Remains of Malcolm Canmore's Tower

There have been various interpretations of the name, "Dunfermline".[5] The first element, "dun" translated from Gaelic, has been accepted as a (fortified) hill, which it is assumed to be referring to the rocky outcrop as the site of Malcolm Canmore's tower.[6] The rest of the name is problematic.[6] The second element, "the ferm" may have been an alternative name for the tower burn according to a medieval record published in 1455 and that together with the Lyne Burn to the south, suggest the site of a fortification between these two watercourses.[5][6]

The first record of a settlement in the Dunfermline area was in the Neolithic period. This evidence includes finds of a stone axe; some flint arrowheads and a carved stone ball which was found near the town.[7] A cropmark which is understood to have been used as a possible mortuary enclosure has been found at Deanpark House, also near the town. By the time of the Bronze Age, the area was beginning to show some importance. Important finds included a bronze axe in Wellwood and a gold torc from the Parish Churchyard.[7] Cist burials from the Bronze Age have also been discovered at both Crossford and Masteron, the latter of which contains a pair of armlets, a bronze dagger and a set necklace believed to have complimented a double burial.[7]

The first historic record for Dunfermline was made in the 11th century.[8] According to the fourteen-century chronicler, John of Fordum, Malcolm III, King of Scotland (1058–1093) married his second bride, the Anglo-Hungarian princess, Margaret at the church in Dunfermline between 1068 and 1070 which was performed by Forhad, the last '"Celtic"' bishop of St Andrews.[8][9] There is a tradition that the tower in Pittencrieff Glen (now Pittencrieff Park) known as Malcolm Canmore's tower, was the site of the King's hunting lodge and which became the residence of the King and Queen of Scotland.[6][8] The remains of this tower which was built around 1065 by Malcolm III can still be seen on a rocky outcrop above its left or east bank, now hidden by a loop of the Tower Burn.[6][10]

Illustration of Dunfermline Abbey

Malcolm III established Dunfermline as a new seat for royal power in the mid-11th century and initiated changes that eventually made the township the de facto capital of Scotland for much of the period until the assassination of James I in 1437.[10] Following her marriage to Malcolm III, Margaret, who had been taught by the Benedictines, became instrumental in encouraging her husband to convert the small Culdee chapel into a church for Benedictine monks. This new church which was dedicated to the Holy Trinity was inaugurated around 1072.[10] David I, King of Scotland (1124–1153) would later grant the church dedicated to the Holy Trinity to "unam mansuram in burgo meo de Dunfermlyn" which translates into "a house or dwelling place in my burgh of Dunfermline".[8][11] This foundation which became Dunfermline Abbey, eventually replaced the long established Culdee church there and played a major role in the general romanisation of religion throughout the kingdom. At the peak of its power the abbey controlled four burghs, three courts of regality and a large portfolio of lands from Moray in the north down into Berwickshire.[10] Dunfermline had become a Royal Burgh between 1124 and 1127, if not before this time.[8][11] The royal palace was also connected to the abbey and the first known documentation of the Auld Alliance was signed there on 23 October 1295.

The Union of the Crowns ended the town's royal connections when James VI relocated the Scottish Court to London in 1603.[12] The Reformation of 1560 had previously meant a loss of the Dunfermline's ecclesiastical importance. In 1624 a major fire left a large part of the medieval-renaissance burgh in ruin. Some of the surviving buildings of the fire were the palace, the abbey and the Abbot's House.[10][13]

The decline in the fortunes of Dunfermline lasted until the introduction of a linen industry in the early 18th century.[14] One reason for which the town became a centre for linen was there was enough water to power the mills and nearby ports along the Fife Coast. These ports also did trade with the Baltic and Low Countries.[14] Another reason was through an act of industrial espionage in 1709 by a weaver known as James Blake who gained access to the workshops of a damask linen factory in Edinburgh by pretending to act like a simpleton in order to find out and memorise the forumale.[14][15] On his return to his home town in 1718, Blake established a damask linen industry in the town.[14] The largest of these factories was St Leonard's Mill which was established by Erskine Beveridge in 1851. A warehouse and office block was later added around 1869. Other linen factories were built on land to both the north and south ends of the burgh.[16] During the mid-19th century, powerloom weaving started to replace linen damask. The latter did not survive, going into decline straight after the end of First World War.[13] In 1909 the Royal Navy established Scotland's only Royal Naval Dockyard at nearby Rosyth.

Erskine Beveridge company offices, now converted into flats

Post-war housing began in the late 1940s with the construction of temporary prefabs and Swedish timber houses around areas such as Kingseat and Townhill. Additional provisions were made for electricity, water and sewage systems. Council housing was focused towards Abbeyview, on a 240-acre (97 ha) site on Aberdour Road; Touch, to the south of Garvock Hill; Bellyeoman and Baldridgeburn. Private housing became focused to the north of Garvock Hill and on the site of West Pitcorthie Farm.[17]

Today, Dunfermline is the main centre for the West Fife area, and is also considered to be a dormitory town for Edinburgh.[13][18][19] The town has shopping facilities, a major public park, a main college campus at Halbeath and an-out-of-town leisure park with a multiplex cinema and a number of restaurants. The online retailer Amazon.com is currently constructing a distribution centre in the Duloch Park area of Dunfermline.


City Chambers

Dunfermline obtained royal burgh status until this was abolished in 1975, under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973 in favour of a three-tier regions and districts. The royal burgh merged into Dunfermline District, which was one of three districts within the Fife region serving the town and West Fife from Kincardine to Aberdour.[20] The district council was abolished in 1996, under the Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994,[21] when the region became a unitary council area. The new unitary Fife Council, adopted the areas of the former districts as council management areas, and created area committees to represent each.

Today, Dunfermline is represented by several tiers of elected government. Abbeyview, Bellyeoman, Carnock and Gowkhall, Central Dunfermline, Izatt Avenue & Nethertown and Touch and Garvock Community Councils form the lowest tier of governance whose statutory role is to communicate local opinion to local and central government.[22] Fife Council, the unitary local authority for Dunfermline is based in Glenrothes who are the executive, deliberative and legislative body responsible for local governance.[23] Dunfermline has retained some importance as an administrative centre with the Council's principle west Fife office based at New City House. Councillor meetings, including the City of Dunfermline Area Committee, take place in the Dunfermline City Chambers.

Dunfermline forms part of the county constituency of Dunfermline and West Fife. The Dunfermline and West Fife UK (or Westminster) constituency, created in 2005 when the previous seats Dunfermline East and Dunfermline West were abolished, elects a Member of Parliament (MP) to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom by the first past the post system. The seat was won at the 2010 general election by Thomas Docherty of the Labour Party.[24] Previously, the seat had been held by Willie Rennie for the Liberal Democrats since the Dunfermline and West Fife by-election in 2006. For the purposes of the Scottish Parliament, Dunfermline forms part of the Dunfermline constituency. The Dunfermline Scottish Parliament (or Holyrood) constituency created in 2011, following a review of Scottish Parliament constituency boundaries is one of nine within the Mid Scotland and Fife electorical region.[25] Each constituency elects one Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) by the first past the post system of election. The seat was won at 2011 Scottish Parliament elections by Bill Walker for the SNP.[26]

At EU level, Dunfermline is part of the pan-Scotland European Parliament constituency which elects seven Members of the European Parliament (MEP)s using the d'Hondt method of party-list proportional representation.[27] Scotland returns two Labour MEPs, two SNP MEPs, one Conservative and Unionist MEP and one Liberal Democrat MEP, to the European Parliament.[27]


Dunfermline is at 56°04′17″N 3°27′42″W / 56.07139°N 3.46167°W / 56.07139; -3.46167 on the coastal fringe of Fife.[5] The medieval town rose from approximately 51 metres (167 ft) above sea level in the south, where Nethertown Broad Street can now be found; 69 metres (226 ft)–67 metres (220 ft) west to east along what is now Priory Lane; to 90 metres (300 ft)–101 metres (331 ft) up the High Street, from west to east; to 92 metres (302 ft)–105 metres (344 ft)&106 metres (348 ft) between Bruce Street and Queen Anne Street from south to north.[11][28]

Dunfermline seen from the town's eastern expansion area. The chimney stacks at Grangemouth and Longanett can be seen in the distance
Panorama of Dunfermline seen from the town's eastern expansion area

Temperatures in Dunfermline, much like the rest of Scotland, are relatively moderate given its northern latitude. Fife is a peninsula, between the Forth of Tay to the north, Firth of Forth to the south and the North Sea to the east. Summers are relatively cool and the warming of the water over the summer, results in warm winters. Average annual temperatures in Kirkcaldy range from a maximum of 18 °C (64 °F) to a minimum of 9 °C (48 °F).[29]


Dunfermline compared according to UK Census 2001[30][31][32][33]
Dunfermline Fife Scotland
Total population 39,229 349,429 5,062,011
Foreign born 1.71% 1.18% 1.10%
Over 75 years old 6.96% 7.46% 7.09%
Unemployed 4.21% 3.97% 4.0%

According to the 2001 census, Dunfermline had a total population of 39,229.[30] The population of Dunfermline is estimated to have grown to around 46,430 in 2008.[4] The demographic make-up of the population is much in line with the rest of Scotland. The age group from 30 to 44 forms the largest portion of the population (23%).[30] The median age of males and females living in Dunfermline was 36 and 39 years respectively, compared to 37 and 39 years for those in the whole of Scotland.[30]

The place of birth of the town's residents was 96.99% United Kingdom (including 87.02% from Scotland), 0.25% Republic of Ireland, 1.06% from other European Union countries, and 1.71% from elsewhere in the world.[30] The economic activity of residents aged 16–74 was 46.65% in full-time employment, 12.54% in part-time employment, 4.51% self-employed, 4.21% unemployed, 2.75% students with jobs, 2.11% students without jobs, 13.57% retired, 4.92% looking after home or family, 5.97% permanently sick or disabled, and 2.78% economically inactive for other reasons.[32]


Traditionally, industry in Dunfermline was concentrated to the north of the town centre with textiles being particularly important to the town's economy. Following the two world wars, Dunfermline's traditional industries declined. However a number of new engineering, defence and electronics companies developed in the town in industrial estates located in the south at Pitreavie, and to the west at Elgin Street. After the end of the Second World War traditional industries, particularly linen and coal mining became obsolete in the town and many factories ceased production. Manufacturing in the town rejuvenated by the early 1960s when Monotype Corporation opened a new factory in Halbeath.[34] The completion of the Pitreavie Industrial Estate (now known as the Pitreavie Business Park) opened in the mid-1970s, following the arrival of Philips and the re-location of the offices of the Dunfermline Press. Smaller industrial estates were focused on Dickson Street, Halbeath Drive and Primrose Lane.[34]

A number of engineering, defence and electronics companies developed in the town in industrial estates located to the south at Pitreavie, and to the west at Elgin Street. In more recent times the local economy has begun to diversify into the service sectors, including tourism.[35] Major employment is also generated from the numerous offices located at the Carnegie Campus in the south of the town including BSKYB, HBOS and the Dunfermline Building Society.[36]

The Dunfermline area's economy in 2009 was largely made up by jobs in the financial and business, retailing and public service sectors.[37] There are also moderate instances of retailing and distribution, manufacturing and construction sector employment. Unemployment levels were recorded below the Scottish average at 3.4% in 2001. The Dunfermline area has Fife's second largest concentration of employment providing approximately 24,600 jobs in 2008.[35] Employment in Dunfermline is largely concentrated in the town centre and in peripheral industrial estates and business parks.

Kingsgate Shopping Centre

Online retailer Amazon.com is constructing a new 1,000,000 sq ft (93,000 m2) distribution centre on development land in the east of the town adjacent to the M90 motorway. Once completed it is expected to create over 750 jobs and will become the company's largest warehouse in the UK.[38][39] The Newcastle based, Shepherd Offshore Group also plan to erect a renewables hub near the Halbeath Interchange, off the M90 on a 15 acres (61,000 m2) former Hyndai/Motorola 'white elephant' factory.[40][41] The demolition of the factory began in early 2011 with an expected date for completion at the end of the year. A masterplan is being created for the site identifying significant investment and development opportunities with the potential to create a substantial number of new jobs.[40][42]

Dunfermline is the principal shopping centre serving the western area of Fife and is region's second largest town centre in terms of floorspace.[43] Retailing accounts for 18% of the total number of jobs in the town[37]. The majority of shops and retail services in Dunfermline are concentrated in the town centre along a high street. The Kingsgate Shopping Centre is located on the pedestrianised section of the High Street giving Dunfermline a mix of modern and traditional shops.[44][45] A major extension of the Kingsgate Shopping Centre was completed in 2008 improving and expanding the retail offer in the town by attracting a major department store brand and range of other smaller retailers.[44][45] Other major retail areas in Dunfermline include the Carnegie Drive Retail Park, located north of the town centre and the Halbeath Retail Park located to the east of the town. A large neighbourhood centre with one of the towns major supermarkets was also built as part of the eastern expansion area of Dunfermline. The Fife Leisure Park, built in 1999 is located next to the M90 in the east of Dunfermline. The leisure park has a large cinema, a health club, bowling alley and a number of restaurants.[46]

Landmarks and notable buildings

Dunfermline Palace and Abbey

The Category A listed [47] Dunfermline Abbey is one of the best examples of Scoto-Norman monastic architecture.[48][49] Despite much of the monastic buildings being destroyed by the troops of Edward I in 1303, there are substantial remains with the lower stories of the dormitory and latrine blocks on the east side of the cloister being the earliest surviving parts, dating back to the early 13th century.[49][50] The eastern section of the abbey was re-built as a parish church between 1818 and 1821.[49]

To the north of the abbey, on the corner of Maygate and Abbot Street is the Category A listed[51] Abbot House.[52] This is regarded as the oldest secular building in Dunfermline.[53][54] The house was originally built in the mid-fifteenth century as a residence for Abbot Richard Bothwell and this role continued until Commendator George Durie left to move into new apartments at the Palace in 1540.[55] Along Abbot Street is the Category B listed [56] Dunfermline Carnegie library which was built between 1881–1883.[57][58] This library was the first in the world to be funded via donations by philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie. A total of 2,811 free public libraries were eventually built altogether.[57] At the top of Moodie Street is the Category B listed[59] handloom weavers' cottage, the birthplace of Andrew Carnegie which dates from the early 18th century.[60][61] An adjacent memorial hall was added to the birthplace in 1928.[62]

Abbot House (rear view)

The Category A listed[63] Guildhall on the High Street was erected in 1807 by the guilds of the local merchants who were ambitious for Dunfermline to become the county town of Fife.[53] Lack of funds forced the building to be sold, but in 1811 funds were available to add the 132 foot (40,000 mm) high steeple.[53] At the west end of the High Street is the Category A listed[64] City Chambers built between 1876–1879 with its 117 foot (36 m) high central clock tower and turrets.[65]

In the car park between Bruce Street and Chambers Street is St Margaret's Cave, a place where she would retreat to pray in peace and quiet.[65] The cave was re-opened in 1993 to celebrate the 900th anniversary of her death.[65][66] The entrance to Pittencrieff Park at the bottom of Bridge Street is enhanced by the Category A listed[67] Louise Carnegie Memorial Gates which were opened on 28th June 1929.[68] The gates which were named after the wife of Andrew Carnegie lead up a to a bronze statue of Andrew Carnegie which was unveiled in 1914 to a crowd of 20,000.[65][68]

Pittencrieff House Museum

In the subsequent development of the modern park, the Category A listed[69] Pittencrieff House, built around 1610 for Sir William Clerk of Penicuik, was designed as a centre piece.[70][71][72] The house today has been converted for use as a museum. Two of the bedrooms were converted to create two long galleries for museum and art exhibition space in a restoration programme undertaken by Sir Robert Lorimar between 1911 and 1913.[70][71] Work on the building was completed in 2010 to repair and reharl the property, restoring the original ochre-coloured limewash exterior. The project was funded through the £1.7 million Dunfermline Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme (CARS) under a partnership between Fife Council and Historic Scotland.[73]

To the west of Dunfermline, close to the village of Crossford is the Category A listed[74] Pitfirrane Castle, once the seat of the Halkett family.[75][76] The majority of the castle dates from the 16th century including the plain rectangular tower.[77] The castle and estate were purchased by the Dunfermline Carnegie Trust in 1951 and the castle become the clubhouse for Dunfermline Golf Club.[76] To the south of Dunfermline is the Category A listed[78] Hill House built in 1623 for William Monteith of Randford as a lairds' house.[79][80] The Category A listed[81] Pitreavie Castle built in 1631 as a fortified manor by Sir Hendry Wardlaw is close to the southern end of the M90 between the town and Rosyth.[82] To the south-west of Dunfermline is the Category A listed[83] Logie House, built for the Hunt family.[84]


Louise Carnegie Memorial Gates, leading into Pittencrieff Park

Pittencrieff Park, otherwise known as the glen is a 76 acres (310,000 m2) park, gifted by Andrew Carnegie in 1903.[85][86] The park once formed the estate of Pittencrieff and the lands of the house, owned by the Lairds of Pittencrieff.[86] A proposed £1.4 million project to regenerate, restore and re-establish the park, which started in 2009 is ongoing.[87][88] Following a successful application for round one funding of £27,000 through the Heritage Lottery Fund's Parks for People programme. A stage two bid for funding is in process; the outcome of which is not known until the summer. Should the bid be a success, work will start to address the areas of concern in the park within a three year period.[87] This will include a full refurbishment of the glasshouse and also alterations to accommodate a classroom; improvements to both the Glen Pavilion and Pittencrieff House; employing a greenscape ranger to increase the number of visitors with a programme of activities and to reinstate the palace walkway which has been closed for a number of years.[87][88] A 10 year management plan, also part of the application, will ensure that all criteria is covered for the park to achieve a green flag award.[87]

The Andrew Carnegie birthplace museum dedicated to his life and work is on the southern gateway of the town centre. Annual heritage walks, organised by the museum, take place every summer.[89] Carnegie donated a lot of funds to his native town to provide first-class facilities way ahead of what any town of its size was able to offer, prior to the First World War. These included swimming baths built in 1877; replacement baths built at Pilmuir Street in 1901; the Carnegie library in 1883; the founding of the Scottish College of Hygience and Physical Training in 1905 and the provision of free school clinics in 1906.[57] Andrew Carnegie House at the edge of Pittencrieff Park which was built in 2008 now serves as the headquarters of Carnegie Dunfermline Trust; the Carnegie Hero Fund; the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland and the Carnegie United Kingdom Trust.[90][91]

A new £10 million Dunfermline Museum and Art Gallery is to be built on land between the existing Carnegie library building and an adjacent disused Victorian bank.[92][93] Fife Council have pledged £6.8 million towards the project with a further £2.8 million of the costs being met by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Both the library and former bank buildings will be redeveloped with a new extension creating a substantial development which will include the museum, art gallery, archive and library space.[93] A section of the Victorian bank facade will be demolished and then rebuilt as a giant pivoting door to act as an entrance.[94] Work on the museum, designed by award-winning Edinburgh-based Richard Murphy Architects, is expected to start in 2012.[93]

Dunfermline has also been bequeathed two theatres, Carnegie Hall on East Port and the Alhambra on Canmore Street. Carnegie Hall which was built between 1933 and 1937, is a 540-seat theatre complete with a restaurant and adjacent music institute.[95] The Alhambra which was opened in 1922, has one of the largest stages and seat capacities in Scotland.[96]

East End Park, the home of Dunfermline Athletic FC

Local groups include the Dunfermline Folk Club, Dunfermline Abbey Choir and Dunfermline district pipe band. There are live music venues in Dunfermline, including 'The Kinema Ballroom' (now known as 'Velocity') Montys and PJ Molloys. Night clubs include Harlem, Johnson's, Life and Lourenzo's (Formerly Urban, mainly concentrated around the town centre.[97] Dunfermline is home to bands including the former The Skids, Big Country and Nazareth.

Dunfermline is home to professional football, rugby and cricket teams.[98] The senior football team, Dunfermline Athletic play their games at East End Park in the Scottish Premier League.[99] The team have became famous for winning the Scottish Cup twice in the 1960s (1961 and 1968) gaining a reputation as a side for competitive football in both England and mainland Europe.[98] The senior rugby team, Dunfermline RFC play their games at McKane Park in the National League Division 1.[98][100]

There is also a cricket club based at Carnegie Cricket Ground, an athletics ground at Pitreavie and three golf courses (Dunfermline, Canmore and Pitreavie).[98] Carnegie Leisure Centre (originally Carnegie swimming baths) is the main sports centre. A £17.2 million pound major refurbishment and extension to the centre which started in December 2008 is expected to be finished in November 2011.[101] The work will include the conversion of a 25 yard Edwardian training pool into a modern 25 metre 6 lane, deck level pool with movable floor; an improved entrance and reception area with a new cafe and a new state of the art gym with 80 stations.[102]


Today, Dunfermline has four secondary schools and fourteen primary schools.[103][104] Other educational facilities include a private school and a school for children with learning difficulties.

Dunfermline High School was the main school in the town, until the introduction of the comprehensive system in 1974. Today, the school serves both the southern and western parts of the town along with neighbouring Rosyth and Kincardine.[105] A new £40 million Dunfermline High School, to be built in three phases, on the school's playing fields is set for completion by August 2012.[106][107] Once the new building is occupied, the old school is expected to be demolished for new playing fields in 2013.[107] Queen Anne High School is located in Wellwood towards the northwest area of the town. Woodmill High School, originally a junior secondary, was upgraded to a High School in 1972.[108] The school which was first established in Priory Lane, before moving to a new building on Shields Road in 1960, serves the eastern side of the town and villages of Crombie, Limekilns and North Queensferry.[108][109] St Columba's High School which opened in 1969 is one of two Roman Catholic Secondary Schools in Fife. The school caters for pupils living in West Fife from Kincardine in the west to Cowdenbeath in the east.[108]

Carnegie College, formerly known as Lauder College, is a further education college located in the town. It is a partner to the Dunfermline Business Centre[108] and provides courses catering to over 10,000 students annually. The college has particular specialisms in Business, Technology, Creative Arts and Construction courses.[110]

Public Services

Waste management is handled by the local authority, Fife Council. There is a kerbside recycling scheme in operation in the town. A three-bin collection is in place for the majority of residents living within Fife.[111] Dunfermline has one recycling centre and several recycling points, all operated by the local authority, Fife Council.[112][113] The range of items which are accepted include cardboard, paper, gas bottles, glass, fridges and freezers, small electrical appliances and vehicle oil.[112] Non-hazardous waste is sent to landfill at Lochhead, near the town and Lower Melville Wood, near Ladybank.[114]

Healthcare is supplied by NHS Fife who have their headquarters at Hayfield House in Kirkcaldy. The Queen Margaret Hospital, Dunfermline serves as the accident and emergency hospital in the town.[115]

Statutory emergency fire and rescue service in the town is provided by the Fife Fire and Rescue Service. The nearest station is at the Pitreavie Industrial Estate.[116] Home office policing in Dunfermline is operated by Fife Constabulary. The headquarters of the Dunfermline area is on 2 Holyrood Place, close to the town centre.[117] Dunfermline is also served under the East Central Region which covers Tayside, Forth Valley and the Kingdom of Fife of the Scottish Ambulance Service.[118] There are two ambulance stations in the town; one on Keir Hardie Terrace and the other at the Queen Margaret Hospital on Whitefield Road.[119]


Dunfermline Town Railway Station

Dunfermline is served by the A907 which meets the M90 and A92 to the east of the town at Halbeath Interchange. This connects the town to Perth to the north, Edinburgh to the south and Kirkcaldy to the east. The main routes through the town are Halbeath Road and Carnegie Drive (A907) from east to west.[120]

The main bus terminus is located on a site to the north of the town centre which provides seating, toilets and a cafe.[121] Two railway stations serve the town – Dunfermline Town to the south of the town centre and Dunfermline Queen Margaret to the east of the town close to Queen Margaret Hospital.[122][123] Nearby stations also exist at Rosyth, Inverkeithing and Dalgety Bay to the south of the town.

The nearest major international airport to Dunfermline is Edinburgh Airport, 13 miles (21 km) miles south of Dunfermline. Smaller municipal airports are also located nearby at Glenrothes 18 miles (29 km), Cumbernauld 25 miles (40 km) and Perth 32 miles (51 km).

A continental ferry service, operated by Norfolkline, runs from a terminal at nearby Rosyth.[124]

Notable people

Display in the Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum

Dunfermline's most famous son is the entrepreneur and philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie who was born in the town in 1835. Among the gifts he gave to his home town, include a free library and public swimming baths. Most important of all, was the donation of the Pittencrieff Estate which he had purchased in 1903 to be converted into Pittencrieff Park.

Charles I, King of England, Scotland and Ireland from 1625-1649 was born in Dunfermline Palace.[125] James I, King of Scotland from 1406-1437 was probably born in late 1394 in Dunfermline Palace.[126] James VI and I, the King of England, Scotland and Ireland and his wife, Anne of Denmark, the daughter of Frederick II of Denmark lived in the town until 1603.[127]

John Forbes, a general in the French and Indian War who liberated Fort Duquesne and established Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States was brought up in Pittencrieff House (now part of Pittencrieff Park).

In popular culture, the singer Barbara Dickson; Dan McCafferty and Peter Agnew from the Scottish rock band Nazareth; Ian Anderson the singer of the British progressive rock band Jethro Tull and Moira Shearer, ballerina and actress[128] were all born in the town. Manny Charlton the producer of Nazareth emigrated to the town with his family in the 1960s and Stuart Adamson, rock guitarist with the Skids and frontman with Big Country was brought up in nearby Crossgates.[129] In literature, the critically acclaimed author, Iain Banks; poet and novelist, John Burnside; Robert Gilfillan and Robert Henryson who wrote about life in the royal burgh in the 15th century have connections. In Sport, Harry Lind of Dunfermline RFC who was capped sixteen times for the Scotland national rugby team and Jim Greenwood who played for Dunfermline RFC, Scotland and British and Irish Lions come from the town. Billy Liddell who played his entire career with Liverpool F.C. was born in nearby Townhill.[130]

Twin cities

See also



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  • Brown, Michael (2000). James I (Stewart Dynasty in Scotland). Tuckwell Press Ltd. ISBN 1862321051. 
  • Cavendish, Richard (2007). Kings & Queens: The Concise Guide. David & Charles. ISBN 07153223768. 
  • Durie, Bruce (2002). A Century of Dunfermline. WHSmith. ISBN 075093137X. 
  • Hendrie, William F. (2002). Old Dunfermline. Stenlake Publishing. ISBN 1840331941. 
  • Lamont-Brown, Raymond (2002). Fife in History and Legend. Edinburgh: John Donald. ISBN 0859765679. 
  • McEwan, Bert (2009). Dunfermline: The Post-War Years (2nd edition ed.). Breedon Books. ISBN 1859834078. 
  • Omand, Donald (2000). The Fife Book. Edinburgh: Birlinn. ISBN 1841582743. 
  • Pearson, John (2000). Around Dunfermline (2nd edition ed.). John Pearson. ISBN 0951913444. 
  • Pride, Glen L. (1999). The Kingdom of Fife (2nd edition ed.). ISBN 1873190492. 
  • Taylor and Márkus (2007). Historic Dunfermline: Archeology and Development. Dunfermline Burgh Survey, Community Project. ISBN 09555724406. 

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  • Dunfermline — Dunfermline, IL U.S. village in Illinois Population (2000): 262 Housing Units (2000): 117 Land area (2000): 0.131005 sq. miles (0.339302 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 0.131005 sq. miles… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Dunfermline, IL — U.S. village in Illinois Population (2000): 262 Housing Units (2000): 117 Land area (2000): 0.131005 sq. miles (0.339302 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 0.131005 sq. miles (0.339302 sq. km) FIPS… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Dunfermline — (spr. Dönnfermlein), 1) District in der schottischen Grafschaft Fife, am Forth Busen der Nordsee, Steinkohlen u. Eisenbergwerke, sowie die größten Kalkgruben Großbritanniens, Tischzeugweberei; 22,000 Ew.; 2) Hauptort desselben, Eisenbahn nach der …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Dunfermline [1] — Dunfermline (spr. dănförrlĭn), Stadt (royal burgh) in der schott. Grafschaft Fife, auf einer Anhöhe gelegen, hat Ruinen eines Palastes (in dem Karl I. geboren wurde), eine großartige, 1072 gestiftete Benediktinerabtei (mit schottischen… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Dunfermline [2] — Dunfermline, Baron von, s. Abercromby …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Dunfermline — (spr. dönnföhr[m]lĭn), Stadt in der schott. Grafsch. Fife, (1901) 25.250 E.; Leinwand und Damastmanufaktur; Ruinen einer Benediktinerabtei mit dem Grabe von Robert Bruce …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Dunfermline —   [dʌn fəːmlɪn], Stadt in der Fife Region, Ostschottland, nahe dem Firth of Forth, 55 100 Einwohner; Textilindustrie, Maschinenbau.   Stadtbild:   Die Kirche des Benediktinerklosters (gegründet Ende des 11. Jahrhunderts) wurde im 12. Jahrhundert… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Dunfermline — [dən fʉrm′lin] city in E Scotland, on the Firth of Forth: district pop. 127,000 …   English World dictionary