Dull, Perth and Kinross

Coordinates: 56°37′07″N 3°56′50″W / 56.618498°N 3.947334°W / 56.618498; -3.947334
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The church at Dull
Dull is located in Perth and Kinross
Location within Perth and Kinross
OS grid referenceNN806491
Council area
Lieutenancy area
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtPH15
Dialling code01887
UK Parliament
Scottish Parliament
List of places
56°37′07″N 3°56′50″W / 56.618498°N 3.947334°W / 56.618498; -3.947334

Dull (Scottish Gaelic: Dul, pronounced [t̪ul̪ˠ]) is a village in Perth and Kinross, Scotland.[1] It is paired with Boring, Oregon. Bland, New South Wales, Australia, is also a member of the League of Extraordinary Communities established by Boring and Dull in 2013.


In the Scottish Highlands, Dull consists of a single street of houses on the north side of the valley of the River Tay.

Etymology and translations[edit]

The name Dull may be Pictish in origin and derived from the word *dol meaning "water-meadow, haugh" (Welsh dôl[2]) This would be cognate with the Gaelic dail meaning a meadow,[3] but the modern Gaelic name of the town, from which the English is taken is "Dul"[4] or "An Dul".


Fincastle Chapel

The parish church is on the site of an early Christian monastery founded by St Adomnán (Scottish Gaelic: N. Eònan), Abbot of Iona (died 704). Several early Christian cross-slabs dating to the 7th or 8th century have been discovered in and around the parish graveyard. A slab carved with stylised warriors and horsemen in the Pictish style, uncovered during grave-digging in the 19th century, is displayed in the Museum of Scotland, and may have formed part of a wall-relief, or one side of a box-shrine. A massive font of rough workmanship, preserved by the church door, is also a probable relic from the early monastic site.

The surrounding district was known as the Appin of Dull, the name deriving from Old Irish apdaine ("abbacy") referring to the former monastic estate, as with Appin in Argyll, the abbey lands in that case being those of the major early Christian monastery of Lismore. Four undecorated crosses, of which three survive, one at Dull itself, and two in the nearby old church at Weem, once stood around the monastic precinct, defining an area of sanctuary.

From the later Middle Ages to modern times, the church at Dull was a parish church in the Diocese of Dunkeld. It is not known when the early Christian monastery ceased to function.

In decline for much of the 20th century, with its church and school both going out of use, the small village has seen the construction of several new houses, and the restoration of older buildings, in the 21st century.


In 1951, Dull had a population of 2,055[5] (this was for an extensive parish stretching a long way beyond the village). As of 2012, the population of Dull was approximately 84.[6]

Twin towns[edit]

Twinning sign at Dull

Dull is twinned with:

Elizabeth Leighton of Aberfeldy, Scotland, proposed the pairing with Boring, Oregon, while passing through the unincorporated town on the highway from Portland, Oregon, to Mount Hood on a cycling holiday.[7][8] In June 2012, Boring, Oregon, accepted the proposal to "pair" their municipalities, in an effort to promote tourism in both places as a play on their names.[9][10][11] The Boring Community Planning Organization (CPO) issued commemorative "Boring & Dull: a pair for the ages" T-shirts and mugs, raffling off a trip to Dull, Scotland.[12] The Boring CPO will not attempt to get the pairing recognised by the US-based Sister Cities International.[13]

Dull and Boring celebrations are held annually on August 9 in Oregon[14] with a piper and a barbershop quartet;[15] the Dull celebrations are in October.[16][17]

Bland Shire, West Wyalong—a farm community and former gold prospecting site in New South Wales, Australia[18]—joined the initiative in 2013,[19] creating not a "twinned town" relationship but a League of Extraordinary Communities to group Dull, Boring and Bland. The group became known as the "Trinity of Tedium".[20][21][22][23]


  1. ^ Ordnance Survey, Great Britain (2008), "Pitlochry and Crieff", Ordnance Survey Landranger Map (B2 ed.), ISBN 978-0-319-22985-9
  2. ^ Hall, Mark A; Driscoll, Stephen T; Geddess, Jane (11 November 2010). Pictish Progress: New Studies on Northern Britain in the Early Middle Ages. Brill. p. 85. ISBN 9789004188013. Retrieved 30 June 2019.
  3. ^ "Dail".
  4. ^ "Rannsaich an Stòr-dàta Briathrachais Gàidhlig".
  5. ^ "1951 Census of Scotland, County Report". VisionOfBritain.com. Retrieved 2 June 2017.
  6. ^ "Dull Residents In Scotland Hope For Boring Link To Town In The US". Huffington Post. 6 May 2012. Retrieved 2 June 2017.
  7. ^ Alexandra Topping and agencies (6 June 2012). "Dull and Boring? Not any more for Scottish village and US town". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  8. ^ "Welcome to Dull and Boring". Kuriositas.com. 6 June 2012. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  9. ^ LeVeille, David. "A Tale of Dull and Boring Sister Cities". The World.org. Retrieved 15 July 2013.
  10. ^ BBC News - Boring in Oregon votes to pair with Dull in Perthshire
  11. ^ Gambino, Lauren. "Dull and Boring? Sounds exciting". KVAL. Archived from the original on 22 October 2013. Retrieved 22 February 2013.
  12. ^ "Happy Boring & Dull Day!". Time. 9 August 2013. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  13. ^ Emily Fuggetta. "Boring group makes Dull decision: Partnership official with Scottish village". The Oregonian. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  14. ^ "Dull & Boring". Facebook. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  15. ^ "Excitement hope for Boring, Oregon, and Dull, Perthshire". BBC News. 9 August 2013. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  16. ^ Campbell, Glenn. "Dull, Scotland, makes Boring, Oregon, more interesting". BBC News. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  17. ^ "BBC TV crew tapes interviews in Boring". Portland Tribune. 22 April 2014. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  18. ^ "Dull and Boring story also to become Bland?". Highland Perthshire News. 12 July 2014. Archived from the original on 10 August 2014. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  19. ^ "Bland hopes to join Dull and Boring - Perth & Kinross". The Courier (UK). 1 June 2013. Archived from the original on 10 August 2014. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  20. ^ "Bland joins Dull and Boring". The Daily Advertiser. 25 February 2014. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  21. ^ "Scots town Dull joins forces with Bland and Boring". The Scotsman. 13 November 2013. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  22. ^ "Bland, Dull and Boring: Three towns team up to excite tourists". MSN. Archived from the original on 16 November 2013. Retrieved 9 August 2014.
  23. ^ Baskas, Harriet (25 April 2014). "Dull, Boring and Bland Team Up to Lure Tourists". NBC News. Retrieved 9 August 2014.

External links[edit]