Saturday, 13 August 2011

Visit to Dunfermline

Abbot House
Following our tour of the recently restored Royal Apartments in Stirling Castle, the next outing of the Scottish Branch of the Society will take place on Saturday 3 September 2011 to the Royal Burgh of Dunfermline and surrounding area where Queen Mary visited several times.

We will meet for coffee in the War Room of Abbot House (above) in the Maygate, a “treasure house of Scottish History”, once the administrative headquarters of the first and richest Benedictine Abbey in Scotland and now an award winning heritage centre within a 14th-16th Century historic house.  There will be a morning tour of the “new” Abbey Church dating from 1821 and built on the site of the much earlier Medieval eastern limb of the old Abbey.  During construction the human remains considered to be those of Robert the Bruce (minus the heart and viscera!) were found and re-interred below the pulpit.  We will then have time to explore the ruins of the great Benedictine Abbey complex dating back to the time of St. Margaret, including the 12th century nave erected by David l (adjoining the new Abbey Church) and the Palace remains.  The former Abbey guest house, visited by Mary, was extensively remodelled by James Vl to provide accommodation for Queen Anne of Denmark and was the birthplace of the future Charles l and hus sister the future Elizabeth of Bohemia.  Following lunch at Abbot House there should be a short time to explore some of the galleries and displays in the House before we head off to Rosyth Castle for a guided tour of the ruins. We will end the day with afternoon tea at the Queensferry Hotel in North Queensferry with fine views over the river and Forth Bridges.

The programme timings are as follow:
9.45 am          Meet for coffee in the War Room (1st floor) Abbot House
                       (Please note the early and prompt start).  Centre opens 9.30am.
10.45-11.15      Abbey Church tour.
11.30-12.15        Medieval Abbey Nave and Palace visit (Historic Scotland. For non-members our Treasurer will collect monies during coffee, £4/3.20 conc. Members to bring cards)
12.30-1.30            Soup + sandwich lunch at Abbot House in the War Room.
1.30-2.15                Individual visits to galleries/displays in Abbot House. Entry: £4/3 conc. Payable at shop
2.15-300         Return to cars and travel to Rosyth Castle.
3.00-400                  Tour of Rosyth Castle. Limited parking so full car use appreciated. 
4.15-5.30                Afternoon tea at Queensferry Hotel, North Queensferry.  Easy bus/rail links.

As you will note the day is quite structured, so if you plan to join us we would appreciate your co-operation with regard to timings.  Cost for the day is £15.00 per person and includes coffee and lunch
at Abbot House and tea at Queensferry Hotel.  We propose to subsidise car parking cost (if applicable) from Branch funds.  Travel maps and parking suggestions are included with this letter.

Please contact the Treasurer, Mr Ian Lumsdaine, address and telephone number above (e-mail, with your payment by Friday 26 August 2011 latest if you plan to come.

Lilian Cameron and Lindsey Fowell  

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