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The village's architecture is a mix of old weavers' cottages and modern suburban housing estates. Most residents work either locally or commute to Edinburgh, Glasgow, Stirling or Kirkcaldy. The village is located north and west of the A985, a major trunk road that provides fast travel by car or bus to the Kincardine Bridge, the M90 Motorway and the Queensferry Crossing/Forth Road Bridge.
Cairneyhill hosts a number of local businesses and other amenities. There are two shops (one contains a post office), a garden centre, a petrol station, a number of housing estates, a guest house (The Maltings), a local pub (the Cairneyhill Inn), a primary school, a Scout hall, and a small industrial estate. There is also a golf course, "The Forrester Park Resort," which has two restaurants and a driving range. There is also a hairdressers.
The name is unusual in that the village is not actually on any noticeable hill, and is in fact about 3 miles south of the local landmark of Cairneil Hill. Why a settlement some miles away should be named after the hill is difficult to understand - there are much closer settlements. Old maps before 1800 make little mention of the name, the area usually being marked as Pitdinny or Pitdinnie, which is still found in a local farm on the eastern edge, as well as an area of housing in the village.
The village grew in the 18th century as a settlement for local weavers and was served by the parish church that was built in 1752 and is still used today. This was a hotbed of dissenters and the village was a central point for the religious disputes in Scotland in the early 19th Century.
There is a small bridge over the Torry Burn at the west end of the village known as the "Conscience Bridge". This name arises from local legend, in which a murderer was caught and confessed to his crime on the bridge and hanged himself. The line of the road has been straightened and widened over the years, with only the original north parapet remaining, but the name of the bridge is carved into a plaque which can be seen by leaning over the wall.
Cairneyhill is served by Cairneyhill Primary School, which opened in its current location in July 1980 with 110 pupils, and as of 2014 has 372 pupils. It has 11 classrooms over 2 buildings. The Headteacher currently is Fiona Hall. On 8 December, 2017, part of the school was destroyed by a fire. All of the pupils and staff were evacuated and there were no injuries.
Cairneyhill is home to two youth football clubs Cairneyhill United F.C and Cairneyhill Athletic F.C. The former is captained by Cameron Scott, who led the team to victory in the 2013 Toorie Winters Cup in memory of his late Gran Mildred. Cairneyhill won the match 2-1 on penalties after a 3-3 draw in regulation time against their opponents, Kennoway United FC with penalty goals from Cameron Scott and Daniel Niven and penalty saves from goalkeeper Moray Waite winning the match for Cairneyhill.
The Torry Burn runs through the village. There are seven bridges that cross the burn, four foot bridges and three road bridges.
Area telephone code: 01383 Postal code: KY12
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- "School evacuated after fire breaks out". BBC News. 2017-12-08. Retrieved 2017-12-08.