infobox UK place
country = Scotland
official_name= Lanark
population= 8,253 (2001 Census)
os_grid_reference= NS8843
latitude= 55.674903
longitude= -3.777019
unitary_scotland= South Lanarkshire
lieutenancy_scotland= Lanarkshire
constituency_westminster= Lanark and Hamilton East
constituency_scottish_parliament= Clydesdale
post_town= LANARK
postcode_district = ML11
postcode_area= ML
dial_code= 01555 66

Lanark is a small town in the central belt of Scotland. Its population of 8,253 makes it the 100th largest settlement in Scotland.

Lanark was the county town of the former county of Lanarkshire. It has a long history, old traditions, and some fine parks and buildings. Lanark railway station and coach station has frequent services to Glasgow. There is little industry in Lanark and some residents commute to work in Glasgow and Edinburgh. Its shops serve the local agricultural community and surrounding villages. There is a large modern livestock auction market on the outskirts of the town.


The historic burgh of Lanark was the location of the first meeting of the Scots Parliament in 978.

Lanark has served as an important market town since medieval times, and King David I made it a Royal Burgh in 1140, giving it certain mercantile privileges relating to government and taxation. King David I realised that greater prosperity could result from encouraging trade. He decided to create a chain of new towns across Scotland. These would be centres of Norman civilisation in a largely Celtic country, and would be established in such a way as to encourage the development of trade within their area. These new towns were to be known as Burghs. Bastides were established in France for much the same reason.

When a site had been selected for a new town the King’s surveyors would lay out an area for the town’s market. Each merchant who came to the town was granted a plot of land [usually rent free for the first few years] bordering on the marketplace. These plots were known as feus or rigs. Each feus in a burgh was the same size, though the size varied between burghs. In Forres each feus was 24 feet 10 inches wide and 429 feet deep. The layout of the feus in Lanark can still be easily seen between the north side of Lanark High Street [the former market place] and North Vennel, a lane which runs behind the feus. A motte and bailey castle was also constructed at the bottom of Castlegate.


European Parliament - Lanark is part of the constituency of Scotland which elects seven representatives to the European Parliament.

Parliament of the United Kingdom - Lanark is part of the constituency of Lanark and Hamilton East. Jimmy Hood [ (voting record, interests and expenses)] has represented Lanark and Hamilton East in the UK Parliament since 1987.

Scottish Parliament - Lanark is part of the constituency of Clydesdale. Karen Gillon has represented Clydesdale in the Scottish Parliament since 1999. Clydesdale is one of nine constituencies in the South of Scotland electoral region, which elects seven additional members by a system of proportional representation. The 2007 electoral results are given in the Clydesdale article and in the article for the Scottish Parliament election, 2007.

Local Council - Lanark is within the South Lanarkshire council area.


Visitors to the town can visit the nearby World Heritage Site of New Lanark, close to the Falls of Clyde, the Corehouse estate and the Scottish Wildlife Trust's Corehouse Nature Reserve.

The [ Lanark Museum] is located in West Port.

A large boating lake, Lanark Loch, adjoins a golf course and the former racecourse, the latter offering pony-trekking activities.

The town's Castlebank Park lies near the former site of Lanark Castle, and allows access to the River Clyde and the Clyde Walkway.

An ornate gas lamp, known as the 'Provost's Lamp' stands at the bottom of the high street. The lamp used to be placed outside the home of whoever was Provost of Lanark at the time [see photograph below] .

In the 1840s there was ill feeling between Deacon McDonald of Castlegate and a Miss Inglis who lived just across Castlegate in Vere House. One day, Deacon MacDonald’s dog was poisoned and he suspected that it was Miss Inglis who had done the evil deed. Deacon McDonald chose an effective form of revenge. He commissioned a local stonemason to cut a life sized stone replica of the dead dog and paint it, then place it on a skewputt on the Deacons roof, with its head tilted reprovingly towards the house of Miss Inglis. The reason for the statue was soon known throughout the town. The statue, also known as the Girnin Dog, can be seen in Castlegate [see photograph below] .

One of the churches in the town bears the name of The Old Church of St Kentigern (perhaps better known as St Mungo), who set up many medieval churches in the Scottish Lowlands, including Glasgow, and died c612 AD. The town's cemetery stands on the site of The Old Church of St Kentigern, and includes many Covenanter graves.

St. Nicolas' Parish Church [see photograph below] stands at the bottom of the high street. The church bell is believed to date from 1110, and may be one of the oldest church bells in the world. It was moved from The Old Church of St Kentigern when St. Nocolas's Church was built in 1774. It has been recast four times, including 1659 and 1983. There is an 8-foot [2.45 m] statue of William Wallace in the steeple. This was sculpted by Robert Forrest, from 'an ancient drawing in the possession of the Society of Antiquaries.

Lanark used to have a racecourse and the 'Lanark Silver Bell' is thought to be one of the oldest racing trophies in Europe.Part of the remaining racecourse Is still used for national showjumping events and farm shows.

Lanark Lanimers

"Main article: Lanark Lanimers"

This historic background forms the basis for the Lanimer celebrations, which take place each year for one week in June. Local primary schoolchildren elect a Lanimer Queen and court; and a Lord Cornet is chosen from local businessmen. On the Monday night the Perambulation of the Marches takes place, when townspeople turn out to walk around half the town boundary, following the Lord Cornets past and present as they inspect the border-stones. Traditionally, the townspeople carry "birks", which are small branches of birch trees cut from the woods at the Glenburnie estate. This tradition was started in 1948 by Joseph Doolan, whose family owned the land. The other half of the boundary is inspected on the Wednesday night, again led by the Lord Cornet accompanied by many local riders who participate in the Riding of the Marches, locally referred to as the Rideout. On the Thursday morning, schools and other organisations parade before the Lanimer Queen in themed fancy dress, accompanied by pipe bands. The best floats win prizes, and after the parade the crowning of the Queen takes place on a temporary stand erected in front of St Nicholas' Church, under the statue of William Wallace. The Queen holds a reception party in the town's Memorial Hall on the Thursday and Friday nights, where children perform songs and dances.


The town has a transport interchange on Bannatyne Street with adjacent railway and bus/coach stations.

Lanark railway station provides a half hourly First ScotRail train service on the Argyle line to Glasgow Central Low Level.

Irvine's Coaches operates an hourly coach service [240X] to Glasgow from Monday to Friday between 0600 hours and 1800 hours. There is also a reduced Saturday service.

Bus services to outlying villages operate from the transport interchange. Timetables for the services are available from the nearby [ Tourist Information Office] .


Lanark has three pipe bands. All three bands compete in competitions run by the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association. Vale of Clyde Pipe Band competes in grade 4b and Lanark and District Pipe Band contains two units - one competing in grade 4b and one in grade 3a, having been upgraded from 4b to 4a to 3b to 3a in consecutive years since 2004.

There is also the 'Music in Lanark' programme which began in 2000 with the aim of bringing a variety of the highest quality live music to the town. In the first five years there has been three classical concerts, one jazz concert and one traditional (Scottish) music concert. The programme continues to grow.

Notable people

William Wallace "first drew sword to free his native land" in Lanark in 1297, when he killed the English sheriff Haselrig. According to tradition his house stood in Castlegate, next to what is now the Clydesdale Bank, and a plaque commemorates his exploits. A public house bears the name of the "Wallace Cave". Since 2005, the town has held a festival every August to honour Wallace's memory.

George Gray, born in Lanark in the 1620s, was a POW from the Battle of Dunbar (1650), Durham Cathedral survivor, and New World refugee upon arrival to Berwick, Maine - - See: The Gray Family of Hancock County, Maine By Almon A. Gray, Walter A. Snow

William Smellie (1697-1763) the obstretician.

Lord Braxfield (1722-1799) the notorious High Court Judge.

John Glaister (1856-1932) the forensic scientist.

The rallying family of Jimmy, Alister and Colin McRae.

Scotland goalkeeper and former Glasgow Celtic goalkeeper, Robert (Rab) Douglas.

Scotland and Glasgow Celtic defender Stephen McManus.

Scotland and Rangers Manager Walter Smith.


Primary Schools

There are three main primary schools in Lanark:
*Lanark Primary School (LPS) 1
*Robert Owen Memorial Primary School (ROMPS) 1
*St. Mary's Primary School 21 Indicates non-denominational school
2 Primary a catholic school, but will accept other religious groups

econdary Schools

There is one secondary school in Lanark:
*Lanark Grammar School (LGS) 11 Indicates non-denominational school


ee also

*Lanark County in Ontario, Canada
*Lanark, Ontario a village in Lanark County
*Lanark Grammar School
*Bonnington pavilion, Falls of Clyde A nearby historic feature.


*Historical Tours in the Clyde Valley. Published by the Clyde Valley Tourist Association and the Lanark & District Archaeological Association. Printed by Robert MacLehose and Company Limited, Renfrew, Scotland. 1982.
*Building the Royal Burghs by John Barrett and David Iredale. Published in The Scots Magazine. Volume 142, Number 1. January 1995. pp 10 – 22.
*Upper Clydesdale - A History and Guide by Daniel Martin. Published by the Tuckwell Press, Phantassie, East Linton. 1999.
*Clydesdale District Guide. Published by Clydesdale District Guide. 1995.
*Lanark Heritage Trail. Published by South Lanarkshire Council. 2001.


[!142 An annotated map of Lanark and New Lanark]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Lanark —    LANARK, a burgh, market town, and parish, in the Upper ward of the county of Lanark; containing, with the villages of Cartland and New Lanark. 7679 inhabitants, of whom 4831 are within the burgh, 25 miles (S. E.) from Glasgow, and 32 (S. W. by …   A Topographical dictionary of Scotland

  • Lanark — steht für: Lanark (Schottland), eine schottische Kleinstadt in der Grafschaft South Lanarkshire New Lanark, eine historische Arbeitersiedlung in der Nähe von Lanark, heute Weltkulturerbe Lanark County, ein Landkreis im Südosten von Ontario,… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lanark — Lanark, IL U.S. city in Illinois Population (2000): 1584 Housing Units (2000): 693 Land area (2000): 1.038187 sq. miles (2.688891 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 1.038187 sq. miles (2.688891 sq.… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Lanark, IL — U.S. city in Illinois Population (2000): 1584 Housing Units (2000): 693 Land area (2000): 1.038187 sq. miles (2.688891 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 1.038187 sq. miles (2.688891 sq. km) FIPS… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Lanark — Lanark, so v.w. Lanerk …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Lanark — (spr. lännark), Hauptstadt (royal burgh) von Lanarkshire (Schottland), in malerischer Lage am mittlern Clyde, der hier berühmte Wasserfälle bildet, mit mehreren modernen Kirchen (am ältesten die anglikanische Kirche von 1774), umfangreichem… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Lanark — (spr. lännĕrk), Clydesdale, Grafschaft in Südschottland, 2283 qkm, (1901) 1.339.289 E.; Steinkohlenlager, Eisen und Bleigruben, Eisenwerke u.a. Industrie (Mittelpunkt Glasgow). – Die Hauptstadt L., am Clyde, 5084 E.; nahebei das Dorf New L. mit… …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Lanark — Lanark, Lanerk, schott. Grafschaft westl. von Edinburgh, an der Clyde, gebirgig und rauh, aber außerordentlich reich an Eisen, Blei und Steinkohlen, daher ist Bergbau und Metallindustrie ein Hauptgeschäft; auf 40 QM. leben 575000 E.; Hauptort ist …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • Lanark — [lan′arkshir΄, lan′arkshərlan′ərk] former county of SC Scotland: also Lanarkshire [lan′arkshir΄, lan′arkshər] …   English World dictionary

  • Lanark — 55° 40′ 30″ N 3° 46′ 37″ W / 55.6749, 3.77702 …   Wikipédia en Français

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”