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For other uses, see Cumnock (disambiguation).
Old Cumnock Old Church and mercat cross.JPG
Cumnock Old Church and mercat cross
Cumnock is located in East Ayrshire
Cumnock shown within East Ayrshire
Population 13,000 
Language English
OS grid reference NS569200
Council area
Lieutenancy area
Country Scotland
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town CUMNOCK
Postcode district KA18 1xx
Dialling code 01290 42xxxx
Police Scottish
Fire Scottish
Ambulance Scottish
EU Parliament Scotland
UK Parliament
Scottish Parliament
List of places
Coordinates: 55°27′11″N 4°15′50″W / 55.45294°N 4.2638°W / 55.45294; -4.2638

Cumnock (Cumnag in Gaelic) is a town in East Ayrshire, Scotland. The town sits at the confluence of the Glaisnock Water and the Lugar Water. There are three neighbouring housing projects which lie just outside the town boundaries, Craigens, Logan and Netherthird, with the former ironworks settlement of Lugar also just outside the town, contributing to a population of around 13,000 in the immediate locale. A new housing development, Knockroon, was granted planning permission on 9 December 2009 by East Ayrshire Council.[1]


Early Cumnock[edit]


The name, "Cumnock" has been debated over the years and several interpretations have been offered.

  • Com-cnoc, (hollow of the hills)
  • Com-oich, (meeting of the waters)
  • Cam-cnoc, (crooked hill)
  • Cumanag, (little shrine) [2]

Early History[edit]

This part of Ayrshire has seen human settlement for over 5,000 years. There are to be found, many Bronze Age burial sites around the nearby area. [2]

Mediaeval History[edit]

It is believed that a place of worship has existed in Cumnock's Square for over 1,100 years, though the earliest records begin in about 1275. The patron saint of Cumnock is Saint Conval. James IV created the Burgh of Cumnock. [2]

Industrial Cumnock[edit]

Cumnock housed many miners, and also served as the market town for the other, smaller towns in the district, like Auchinleck, Lugar, Muirkirk, Ochiltree and New Cumnock (the original Cumnock/Comenagh/Comno/ etc.)

The town has a strong socialist heritage due to its role as a mining centre. The father of the Labour Party, James Keir Hardie, lived in the town for a large part of his life, and a statue to him sits outside the town hall. A small housing scheme in the town (Keir Hardie Hill) is named after him. The popular left-wing politician Emrys Hughes was local MP for a time in the mid-20th century, and also lived in the town.

William Wallace allegedly spent 3 months in the seat of Patrick Dunbar ((New)Cumnock or Cumno in 1296), according to the poem, The Wallace, by Blind Harry. Cumnock is also in the heart of Robert Burns country and the poet is said to have spent time there.


The town has six churches, the Congregational Church, Old Cumnock Old Parish Church, St. Andrew's United Free Church, Trinity Church. West Church and the Roman Catholic Church of St. John.


Cumnock have a team in the West of Scotland Junior football league, Cumnock Juniors, who play their home matches at Townhead Park. The team is famous for their bitter rivalry with local neighbours, Auchinleck Talbot. The town also boasts an athletics park and Rugby club, as well as a modern sports centre containing fitness gym and swimming pool.


For many years there were two secondary schools, Cumnock Academy and Saint Conval's High School - which was later annexed with St Joseph's Academy in Kilmarnock and became known as St Joseph's Cumnock Campus. In 2004 however St Joseph's Cumnock Campus was shut down due to falling attendance figures, and the town's Catholic children now attend the original St Joseph's Academy in Kilmarnock. Cumnock Academy's catchment towns include, Cumnock, Drongan, Rankinston, New Cumnock, Ochiltree, Muirkirk, Logan and Lugar.

Notable residents[edit]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

  • Cumnock History Group Cumnock History Group site, extensive information on the history of Cumnock
  • Cumnock Action Plan [1] What's happening in Cumnock
  • cumnockchronicle The local community site for Cumnock, more information on Cumnock
  • more information on The Wallace