Clackmannanshire

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Clackmannanshire
Siorrachd Chlach Mhannainn
Clackmannanshire in Scotland.svg
Coat of arms of Clackmannanshire Siorrachd Chlach Mhannainn
Official logo of Clackmannanshire Siorrachd Chlach Mhannainn
Coordinates: 56°10′N 3°45′W / 56.167°N 3.750°W / 56.167; -3.750Coordinates: 56°10′N 3°45′W / 56.167°N 3.750°W / 56.167; -3.750
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
CountryScotland
Lieutenancy areaClackmannanshire
Admin HQAlloa (current)
Clackmannan (historic)
Government
 • BodyClackmannanshire Council
 • ControlSNP minority (council NOC)
 • MPs
 • MSPs
Area
 • Total61.4 sq mi (159.0 km2)
Area rankRanked 30th
Population
 (mid-2019 est.)
 • Total51,400
 • RankRanked 29th
 • Density840/sq mi (320/km2)
ONS codeS12000005
ISO 3166 codeGB-CLK
Websitewww.clacks.gov.uk

Clackmannanshire (/klækˈmænənˌʃɪər, -ʃər/ (About this soundlisten); Scots: Clackmannanshire; Scottish Gaelic: Siorrachd Chlach Mhannainn) is a historic county, council area, registration county and Lieutenancy area in Scotland, bordering the council areas of Stirling, Fife, and Perth & Kinross and the historic counties of Perthshire, Stirlingshire and Fife.

The name consists of elements from three languages. The first element is from Scottish Gaelic: Clach meaning "Stone". Mannan is a derivative of the Brythonic name of the Manaw, the Iron Age tribe who inhabited the area. The final element is the English word shire. As Britain's smallest historic county, it is often nicknamed "The Wee County". When written, Clackmannanshire is commonly abbreviated to Clacks.

History[edit]

The Stone of Mannan

Clackmannan, the old county town, is named after the ancient stone associated with the pre-Christian deity Manau or Mannan.[1][2] The stone now rests on a larger stone beside the Tollbooth (built late 16th century) and Mercat Cross at the top of Main street, Clackmannan.[3]

Clackmannanshire became known for the weaving mills powered by the Hillfoots burns. Other industries included brewing, glass manufacture, mining and ship building. Now capitalising on its central position and transport links, Clackmannanshire attracts service industries and tourism.

In terms of population, Clackmannanshire is the smallest council area in mainland Scotland. Its population was 19,155 in the 1841 census.[4] This has grown to 51,400 (in 2017),[5] around half of whom live in the main town and administrative centre, Alloa.

The motto of Clackmannanshire is "Look Aboot Ye" (Circumspice in Latin). In 2007 a re-branding exercise led to the area adopting the slogan "More Than You Imagine".[6]

Administrative and political history[edit]

The County of Clackmannan is one of Scotland's 33 historic local government counties, bordering on Perthshire, Stirlingshire and Fife. The county town was originally Clackmannan, but by 1822 neighbouring Alloa had outgrown Clackmannan and replaced it as the county town. Some rationalization of the county boundaries was undertaken in 1889–1890, and in 1971 the Muckhart and Glendevon areas, formerly in Perthshire, were transferred to Clackmannanshire. Clackmannanshire County Council was based at the Sheriff's Court in Alloa.[7][8]

Map of Scotland showing Clackmannan district (1975 to 1996

In 1975, under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973, the existing burghs and 33 historic counties lost their administrative status, and a new hierarchy of regions and districts was created. Clackmannanshire was renamed the Clackmannan District. It became part of the Central Region, together with a Stirling District and a Falkirk District.

The Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994 replaced Scotland's two-tier local government with 32 unitary authorities, with the Clackmannan district becoming one of them. In response to strong local pressure, the first council for the unitary authority changed the name to "Clackmannanshire".

Clackmannanshire played a notable role in the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, where it was the first council area to declare its result. Though some predictions had seen the area as being favourable towards the "Yes" side, the "No" vote took 53.8% of the area's vote. This was seen as an early sign that Scotland would vote against independence.[9]

In the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, Clackmannanshire voted by 58% to remain.[10]

Parliamentary constituencies[edit]

Council composition[edit]

Map of the area's wards (2017 configuration)

As of September 2018, the political composition of Clackmannanshire Council is:

Party Councillors
Scottish National Party 8
Labour 5
Conservative 4
Independent 1

Wards[edit]

Since 2007, the council area has been divided into five multi-member wards:

Ward
number
Ward name Seats Population
(2019)
1 Clackmannanshire West[a] 4 12,606[11]
2 Clackmannanshire North[b] 4 10,731[12]
3 Clackmannanshire Central[c] 3 7,936[13]
4 Clackmannanshire South[d] 4 11,618[14]
5 Clackmannanshire East[e] 3 8,649[15]
Total 18 51,540
  1. ^ Clackmannanshire West covers Menstrie, Glenochil, Tullibody and Cambus.
  2. ^ Clackmannanshire North covers Alva, Tillicoultry and Coalsnaughton.
  3. ^ Clackmannanshire Central covers Sauchie, Fishcross and north-eastern parts of Alloa (Branshill, Fairfield, Hallpark, Whins, Woodlea).
  4. ^ Clackmannanshire South covers most of Alloa other than north-eastern parts and the modern Alloa Park development in the south-east.
  5. ^ Clackmannanshire East covers Clackmannan, Dollar and Muckhart, as well as the Alloa Park development since 2017 – the addition of which was the only boundary change in a 2017 national review.

Geography[edit]

Ben Cleuch in the Ochil Hills, the highest point of Clackmannanshire at 721 metres (2,365 ft)
The River Forth at Alloa showing Alloa Inch and Tullibody Inch (at right)

The Ochil Hills dominate the northern third of the county, where Ben Cleuch, Clackmannanshire's highest point, can be found. The northernmost part of the county lies in the Upper Glendevon Reservoir. Strathdevon is immediately to the south of the steep escarpment formed by the Ochil Fault, along which the Hillfoots Villages are located. Strathdevon mostly comprises a lowland plain a few hundred metres either side of the River Devon, which joins the Forth near Cambus. There is also the Black Devon river that flows past the town of Clackmannan to join the Forth near Alloa. This confluence once had a small pier, for portage to Dunmore pier on the south shore, and anchorage of smaller sailing ships, while others of greater tonnage could be accepted at Dunmore pier on the opposite banks of the Forth. Roughly in the centre of the county lies the Gartmorn Dam County Park, and there are small patches of forest in the south-east of the county. Two unnamed peninsulas are formed by meanders in the river Forth along Clackmannanshire's southern boundary; the easternmost of these has two small islands - Tullibody Inch and Alloa Inch - either side of it.

Coat of arms[edit]

Clackmannanshire's coat of arms is blazoned:

Or, a saltire gules; upon a chief vert, between two gauntlets proper, a pale argent charged with a pallet sable.

The red saltire on gold is taken from the arms of the Clan Bruce. According to legend, Robert Bruce mislaid his gauntlets while visiting the county, and upon asking where he could find them was told to "look aboot ye" (hence the motto). The green chief represents the county's agriculture, while the black and white pale is taken from the arms of the Clan Erskine whose chief the Earl of Mar lives at Alloa Tower. Sir Thomas Bruce 1st Baron of Clackmannan was a member of the House of Bruce and received lands in Clackmannan from his cousin Robert II.

Economy[edit]

A glassworks building with large towers on the banks of an area of water
Owens-Illinois glassworks in Alloa

The main industries are agriculture, brewing, and formerly coal mining. In 2006, permission was given for a waterfront development of the Docks area of Alloa, which has been in decline since the 1960s.[citation needed] There is a large glass works at Alloa.[16]

Transport[edit]

Alloa railway station reopened in May 2008; prior to this the county had no active railway stations. A new railway line was completed which connected Kincardine and Stirling, and thus reconnecting Alloa to the national rail network for the first time since 1968, was opened to the public. Scheduled passenger services operate only between Alloa and Stirling and onwards to Glasgow and Edinburgh; the line to Kincardine is normally used by freight trains only but some special excursion trains are run by charter operators. An opening ceremony was held on Thursday 15 May, with the first fully functioning passenger service commencing in the new summer timetable on 19 May 2008.[17][18] The service provides an hourly connection between Alloa, Stirling and Glasgow Queen Street.

Alloa railway station

The Clackmannanshire Bridge, a new road crossing of the Forth intended to ease congestion and pressure on the older Kincardine Bridge, opened in 2008 (technically the span of the new bridge is not within the county, instead falling just outside it and administratively divided between Falkirk and Fife).

Major roads in the area are the A91 between Bannockburn and St Andrews which is the main thoroughfare through the Hillfoots Villages, the A907 between Stirling and Dunfermline which passes through Alloa and Clackmannan, the A908 connecting Alloa and Tillicountry, and the A977 (fed by the A876) between Kincardine and Kinross which runs east of Clackmannan.

Towns and villages[edit]

Alloa, current administrative centre and Clackmannanshire's largest town
Clackmannan, the historic county town

Places of interest[edit]

Castle Campbell, a medieval castle situated above the town of Dollar
Tullibody Old Kirk, a ruined 12th-century church in Tullibody

References[edit]

  1. ^ "File:Clackmannan sign about stone, cross and tollbooth.jpg - Wikimedia Commons". Commons.wikimedia.org. Retrieved 19 September 2012.
  2. ^ Site Record for Clackmannan, King Robert's Stone Clackmannan StoneDetails Details
  3. ^ "Image of the Stone of Mannan". Commons.wikimedia.org. Retrieved 19 September 2012.
  4. ^ The Cyclopaedia of Useful Knowledge, Vol IV, Caes-Cot (First ed.). London: Charles Knight. 1848. p. 618.
  5. ^ "Population Estimates for UK, England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, Mid-2019". Office for National Statistics. 6 May 2020. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
  6. ^ "Logo and Visual Identity Survey" (PDF). Clackmannanshire Council.
  7. ^ Historic Environment Scotland. "Alloa Sheriff Court and Justice of the Peace Court (LB20970)". Retrieved 18 July 2021.
  8. ^ "County Office, Mar Street, Alloa". Canmore. Retrieved 18 July 2021.
  9. ^ "First Blood To No As Opening Count Declared". Sky News. 19 September 2014.
  10. ^ "EU Referendum local results - C". BBC News. Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  11. ^ Electoral Ward: Clackmannanshire West, Scottish Government Statistics
  12. ^ Electoral Ward: Clackmannanshire North, Scottish Government Statistics
  13. ^ Electoral Ward: Clackmannanshire Central, Scottish Government Statistics
  14. ^ Electoral Ward: Clackmannanshire South, Scottish Government Statistics
  15. ^ Electoral Ward: Clackmannanshire East, Scottish Government Statistics
  16. ^ "Scotland's glass industry still thriving after more than 300 years". HeraldScotland. Retrieved 7 June 2021.
  17. ^ "Railway information | Clackmannanshire Council". Clacksweb.org.uk. 19 May 2008. Retrieved 19 September 2012.
  18. ^ "Stirling Alloa Kincardine Railway celebrates first anniversary". ClacksWeb. 15 May 2008. Retrieved 19 September 2012.

External links[edit]