Falkirk lies nearly midway between Edinburgh and Stirling, about 3 miles south of the Firth of Forth. Historically, Falkirk was a tryst – a market town but in the 19th century the industrial revolution in central Scotland prospered here and the town became important for steel fuelled by the vast local resources of coal. Carron Iron Works and Callendar House, which has a 900 year history, are worthy of visits as is the new Millennium Wheel, an integral element of the restoration of the Forth and Clyde Canal which flows through the town.
The “tryst” part of the town is known as Stenhousemuir, a name now better known as a football club (in fact there are three senior football clubs in this relatively small town, the other two being Falkirk and East Stirling). Roads radiated here from all parts of the country, especially from the Highlands as the town was the main market place for their cattle. 2 thousand years ago the Romans lived and worked around here and the Antonine Wall runs through Kinneil Estate, Callendar Park, Polmont Hill, Tamfourhill and Watling Lodge.
Being located between the country’s capital, Edinburgh and its previous ancient capital of Stirling, Falkirk was strategically very important. Two battles were fought here. In the first one in 1298, William Wallace was defeated by the English but later recovered to act as the springboard for Scotland’s independence. In the second battle, Bonnie Prince Charlie defeated the Hanovarians in 1746 but failed in his bid to secure the throne for his father. Nearby Blackness Castle was the setting for Mel Gibson’s Hamlet.
Today, Falkirk still has some light industry and has the oil refinery town of Grangemouth nearby. It lies on the main M9 motorway from Edinburgh to Inverness via Stirling and Perth and is not far away from the M80 motorway to Glasgow. It is served by air by Edinburgh Airport, about 16 miles along the M9. It also has 2 railway stations Falkirk High and Grahamstown which offer easy access to Edinburgh, Stirling and Glasgow.
As a visitor destination, Falkirk has limited resources but it is ideally located for easy access to Edinburgh, Stirling and Glasgow.
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