Fife (/faɪf/; /fɐif/ in Scottish English; Scottish Gaelic: Fìobha, Scots: Fife) is a council area and historic county of Scotland. It is situated between the Firth of Tay and the Firth of Forth, with inland boundaries to Perth and Kinross and Clackmannanshire. By custom it is widely held to have been one of the major Pictish kingdoms, known as Fib, and is still commonly known as the Kingdom of Fife within Scotland. Fife is one of the six local authorities part of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland city region.
It is a lieutenancy area, and was a county of Scotland until 1975. It was very occasionally known by the anglicisation Fifeshire in old documents and maps compiled by English cartographers and authors. A person from Fife is known as a Fifer.
Fife was a local government region divided into three districts: Dunfermline, Kirkcaldy and North-East Fife. Since 1996 the functions of the district councils have been exercised by the unitary Fife Council.
Fife is Scotland's third largest local authority area by population. It has a resident population of just under 367,000, over a third of whom live in the three principal towns of Dunfermline, Kirkcaldy and Glenrothes.
The historic town of St Andrews is located on the northeast coast of Fife. It is well known for the University of St Andrews, one of the most ancient universities in the world and is renowned as the home of golf.
|• Body||Fife Council|
|• Control||SNP + Lab (council NOC)|
|• MPs||Douglas Chapman|
|• MSPs||Annabelle Ewing|
|• Total||512 sq mi (1,325 km2)|
|Area rank||Ranked 13th|
|• Rank||Ranked 3rd|
|• Density||700/sq mi (280/km2)|
|ISO 3166 code||GB-FIF|
Fife, bounded to the north by the Firth of Tay and to the south by the Firth of Forth, is a natural peninsula whose political boundaries have changed little over the ages. The Pictish king list and De Situ Albanie documents of the Poppleton manuscript mention the division of the Pictish realm into seven sub-kingdoms or provinces, one being Fife, though this is now regarded as a medieval invention.:70–72 The earliest known reference to the common epithet The Kingdom of Fife dates from only 1678, in a proposition that the term derives from the quasi-regal privileges of the Earl of Fife.:132 The notion of a kingdom may derive from a misinterpretation of an extract from Wyntoun.:133 The name is recorded as Fib in A.D. 1150 and Fif in 1165. It was often associated with Fothriff.
Fife was an important royal and political centre from the reign of King Malcolm III onwards, as the leaders of Scotland gradually moved southwards away from their ancient strongholds around Scone. Malcolm had his principal home in Dunfermline and his wife Margaret was the main benefactor of Dunfermline Abbey. The Abbey replaced Iona as the final resting place of Scotland's royal elite, with Robert I amongst those to be buried there.
The Earl of Fife was until the 15th century considered the principal peer of the Scottish realm, and was reserved the right of crowning the nation's monarchs, reflecting the prestige of the area.
A new royal palace was gradually constructed at Falkland, formerly the stronghold of Clan MacDuff, and was used by successive monarchs of the House of Stuart, who favoured Fife for its rich hunting grounds.
King James VI of Scotland described Fife as a "beggar's mantle fringed wi gowd", the golden fringe being the coast and its chain of little ports with their thriving fishing fleets and rich trading links with the Low Countries. Wool, linen, coal and salt were all traded. Salt pans heated by local coal were a feature of the Fife coast in the past. The distinctive red clay pan tiles seen on many old buildings in Fife arrived as ballast on trading boats and replaced the previously thatched roofs.
In 1598, King James VI employed a group of 12 men from Fife, who became known as the Fife adventurers, to colonise the Isle of Lewis in an attempt to begin the "civilisation" and de-gaelicisation of the region. This endeavour lasted until 1609 when the colonists, having been opposed by the native population, were bought out by Kenneth Mackenzie, the clan chief of the Mackenzies.
Fife became a centre of heavy industry in the 19th century. Coal had been mined in the area since at least the 12th century, but the number of pits increased ten-fold as demand for coal grew in the Victorian period. Previously rural villages such as Cowdenbeath rapidly swelled into towns as thousands moved to Fife to find work in its mines. The opening of the Forth and Tay rail bridges linked Fife with Dundee and Edinburgh and allowed the rapid transport of goods. Modern ports were constructed at Methil, Burntisland and Rosyth. Kirkcaldy became the world centre for the production of linoleum. Postwar Fife saw the development of Scotland's second new town, Glenrothes. Originally to be based around a coal mine, the town eventually attracted a high number of modern Silicon Glen companies to the region. Fife Council and Fife Constabulary also centre their operations in Glenrothes.
There are numerous notable historical buildings in Fife, some of which are managed by the National Trust for Scotland or Historic Scotland. They include Dunfermline Abbey (the last resting place of Scottish royalty), the palace in Culross, Ravenscraig Castle in Kirkcaldy, Dysart Harbour area, Balgonie Castle near Coaltown of Balgonie, Falkland Palace (hunting palace of the Scottish Kings), Kellie Castle near Pittenweem, Hill of Tarvit (a historical house), St. Andrews Castle, St. Andrews Cathedral and St. Rule's Tower.
Fife is represented by five constituency members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) and four members of the United Kingdom parliament (MPs) who are sent to Holyrood and the British Parliament respectively. Following the 2015 General Election, all four of the MPs constituencies were held by the Scottish National Party. In the 2017 General Election Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath was regained by Labour. At the same election, the seat of North East Fife became the closest seat in the country with the SNP holding a majority of 2 over the Liberal Democrats Three of the Scottish Parliament constituencies are held by the Scottish National Party: Cowdenbeath, Dunfermline, and Mid Fife and Glenrothes. One is held by the Scottish Liberal Democrats: North East Fife.
Fife Council's administrative headquarters and Police Scotland's P Division (formerly Fife Constabulary) are based in Glenrothes. The Council meetings take place in Fife House (formerly known as Glenrothes House) in the town centre. The west wing of the building was built by the Glenrothes Development Corporation (GDC) as their offices in 1969, which was later used as the headquarters of Fife Regional Council. The former administrative seat was Cupar. Since the last Scottish election in 2012, Fife Council has been run as a minority by the Labour party, with a total of 35 seats, with support of Tory and independent councillors. Alex Rowley was elected leader of Fife Council but demitted office following his election as an MSP. David Ross succeeded as leader in February 2014. The SNP and the other parties form the opposition.
Fife is a peninsula in eastern Scotland bordered on the north by the Firth of Tay, on the east by the North Sea and by the Firth of Forth to the south. The route to the west is partially blocked by the mass of the Ochil Hills. Almost all road traffic into and out of Fife has to pass over one of four bridges, south on the Forth Road Bridge (public transport and cyclists only) and Queensferry Crossing, west on the Kincardine Bridge or north-east via the Tay Road Bridge, the exception being traffic headed north on the M90. Tolls were abolished on the Tay Road Bridge and Forth Road Bridge on 11 February 2008.
There are extinct volcanic features, such as the Lomond Hills which rise above rolling farmland, and Largo Law, a volcanic plug in the east. At 522 metres (1,713 ft), the West Lomond is the highest point in Fife. The coast has fine but small harbours, from the industrial docks in Burntisland and Rosyth to the fishing villages of the East Neuk such as Anstruther and Pittenweem. The large area of flat land to the north of the Lomond Hills, through which the River Eden flows, is known as the Howe of Fife.
North of the Lomond Hills can be found villages and small towns in a primarily agricultural landscape. The areas in the south and west of Fife, including the towns of Dunfermline, Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy and the Levenmouth region are lightly industrial and more densely populated. The only areas which could claim to be heavily industrial are Rosyth, around the naval dockyard and perhaps the Mossmorran Natural Gas Liquids fractionation plant on the outskirts of Cowdenbeath.
The east corner of Fife, generally that east of a line between Leven and St Andrews is recognised throughout Scotland as the East Neuk (or corner) of Fife, small settlements around sheltered harbours, with distinctive vernacular "Dutch" or corbie (crow) stepped gabled and stone-built architecture – an area much sought after as second homes of the Edinburgh professional classes since the Forth Road Bridge was built. The fishing industry on which the East Neuk settlements were built has declined in recent years with the main fishing fleet now operating from Pittenweem and the harbour in Anstruther being used as a marina for pleasure craft.
Cupar took over as county town from Crail in the early 13th century. Glenrothes is now the administrative centre, after the decision to locate the headquarters of the newly established Fife Regional Council there in 1975. Fife's three major towns are Kirkcaldy, Dunfermline and Glenrothes. According to the 2012 estimate, Dunfermline is the largest settlement by population, followed by Kirkcaldy then Glenrothes. The next most sizeable towns by population are St Andrews, Cowdenbeath, Rosyth, Methil and Dalgety Bay. The rest of Fife includes smaller towns such as Inverkeithing, Kincardine, Anstruther, Lochgelly, Burntisland, Leven, Newburgh, Tayport and Cupar, and villages such as Springfield, Kinglassie, Kinghorn, Elie, Auchtertool, Crossgates, Ballingry and Auchtermuchty.
The county was formerly divided into parishes, often but not always based on a town or village:
Fife contains 4,961 listed buildings and 48 conservation areas. Domestic sites of importance include Falkland Palace, Kellie Castle, Dunfermline Palace, St Andrews Castle, Culross Palace and Kirkcaldy's Ravenscraig Castle. Fife has a number of ecclesiastical sites of historical interest. St Andrews Cathedral was home to the powerful Archbishopric of St Andrews, and later became a centre of the Scottish Reformation, while Dunfermline Abbey was the last resting place of a number of Scottish kings. Balmerino and Culross abbeys were both founded in the 13th century by the Cistercians, while a century before Lindores Abbey was founded by the Tironensians outside Newburgh; all were highly important sites.
The Stanza Poetry Festival, East Neuk Festival, Pittenweem Arts Festival are events of national cultural importance. Smaller festivals like Cupar Arts Festival also take place. The Byre Theatre in St Andrews and Adam Smith Theatre in Kirkcaldy were both highly regarded as touring venues, the latter also being the base of the grand opera company Fife Opera. The Byre has re-opened in Autumn, 2014 following its going into administration in 2012.
St Andrews in Fife is the home of golf, being home to the R&A, the governing body of the sport throughout the world, aside from the United States and Mexico. The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, from which it was devolved in 2004, is the world's oldest golf club.
Fife is also home to eight rugby union clubs. Howe of Fife (based in Cupar), and Kirkcaldy play in Scottish Rugby's national leagues while Dunfermline, Fife Southern (based in Rosyth), Glenrothes, Madras, Waid Academy (based in Anstruther) compete in the Caledonia regional leagues. University of St Andrews - the oldest rugby club in Fife - play in the British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) system.
Aberdour Shinty Club have two men's teams, two women's teams and multiple youth squads.
Locally published newspapers include the Fife Free Press in Kirkcaldy; the Dunfermline Press in Dunfermline; the Glenrothes Gazette in Glenrothes, the East Fife Mail in Leven, the Fife Herald in Cupar / Howe of Fife and the St Andrews Citizen in St Andrews. DC Thomson publishes Fife and West Fife editions of the Dundee Courier & Advertiser, and the Counties Edition of the Evening Telegraph is sold in Fife.
The only Fife-based radio station is Kingdom FM. There is also a community radio station that broadcasts each evening and is run solely by youths, called Fife Youth Radio. Other local radio stations, Radio Tay and Edinburgh's 97.3 Forth One, broadcast to the northern and southern parts of the region respectively.
Bayview Park was a football stadium in the town of Methil, Fife, Scotland. It was the home ground of East Fife F.C. from their formation in 1903 until they moved to the new Bayview Stadium in 1998.Clan MacDuff
Clan MacDuff or Clan Duff is a Lowland Scottish clan. The clan does not currently have a chief and is therefore considered an Armigerous clan, which is registered with the Lyon Court. The early chiefs of Clan MacDuff were the original Earls of Fife, although this title went to the Stewarts of Albany in the late fourteenth century. The title returned to the MacDuff chief when William Duff was made Earl Fife in 1759. His descendant Alexander Duff was made Duke of Fife in 1889.Cupar
Cupar ( listen ; Scottish Gaelic: Cùbar) is a town, former royal burgh and parish in Fife, Scotland. It lies between Dundee and Glenrothes. According to a 2011 population estimate, Cupar had a population around 9,000, making it the ninth largest settlement in Fife, and the civil parish a population of 11,183 (in 2011). It is the historic county town of Fife, before the council moved to Glenrothes.Dunfermline
Dunfermline ( (listen); Scots: Dunfaurlin, Scottish Gaelic: Dùn Phàrlain) is a town and former Royal Burgh, and parish, in Fife, Scotland, on high ground 3 miles (5 km) from the northern shore of the Firth of Forth. The town currently has a recorded population of 50,380 in 2012, making it the most populous locality in Fife and the 11th most populous in Scotland.
The earliest known settlements in the area around Dunfermline probably date as far back as the Neolithic period. The area was not regionally significant until at least the Bronze Age. The town was first recorded in the 11th century, with the marriage of Malcolm III, King of Scots, and Saint Margaret at the church in Dunfermline. As his Queen consort, Margaret established a new church dedicated to the Holy Trinity, which evolved into an Abbey under their son, David I in 1128. During the reign of Alexander I, the church - later to be known as Dunfermline Abbey - was firmly established as a prosperous royal mausoleum for the Scottish Crown. A total of eighteen royals, including seven Kings, were buried here from Queen Margaret in 1093 to Robert Stewart, Duke of Albany in 1420. Robert The Bruce, otherwise known as Robert I, became the last of the seven Scottish Kings to be buried in 1329. His bones would eventually be re-discovered and re-buried in 1821, when the excavation of the grounds of what had formerly been the eastern section of the Abbey became the site for the new Abbey Church.
The town is a major service centre for west Fife. Dunfermline retains much of its historic significance, as well as providing facilities for leisure. Employment is focused in the service sector, with the largest employer being Sky UK. Other large employers in the area include Amazon (on-line retailer), Best Western (hotels), CR Smith (windows manufacturing), FMC Technologies (offshore energy), Lloyds and Nationwide (both financial services).Dunfermline and West Fife (UK Parliament constituency)
Dunfermline and West Fife is a county constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It was created for the 2005 general election from all of the old Dunfermline West and parts of the old Dunfermline East constituencies. The current MP is Douglas Chapman of the Scottish National Party (SNP).
The Dunfermline and West Fife by-election was held in early 2006, due to the death of the sitting MP, Rachel Squire. Willie Rennie of the Liberal Democrats was the surprise winner, by some 1,800 votes, in what was seen as a safe Labour seat. However, he lost the seat to Labour's Thomas Docherty at the 2010 general election.
Douglas Chapman won the seat in the SNP's Scottish landslide in General Election 2015.East Fife F.C.
East Fife Football Club is a semi-professional football club established in 1903 in Methil, Fife, Scotland. They are members of the Scottish Professional Football League. They compete in League One, the third tier of the Scottish football league system.
The club were the first to win the Scottish League Cup three times and the first of only two sides from the second tier of the Scottish league system to win the Scottish Cup. This makes them the most successful club in Fife in terms of major honours won.
East Fife are one of four senior clubs based in Fife, but are the only one to bear the name of the area. The three others are Cowdenbeath, Dunfermline Athletic and the Kirkcaldy-based Raith Rovers, all of whom have historically shared rivalries.Fife (instrument)
A fife is a small, high-pitched, transverse aerophone, that is similar to the piccolo. The fife originated in medieval Europe and is often used in Fife & Drum Corps, military units and marching bands. Someone who plays the fife is called a fifer. The word fife comes from the German Pfeife, or pipe, which comes from the Latin word pipare.
The fife is a diatonically tuned instrument commonly consisting of a tube with 6 finger holes and an embouchure hole that produces sound when blown across. Modern versions of the fife are chromatic, having 10 or 11 finger holes that allow any note to be played. On a 10-hole fife, the pointer, ring and middle fingers on both hands remain in the same positions as the 6-hole fife, while both thumbs and both pinky fingers are used to play accidentals. An 11-hole fife has holes positioned similarly but adds a second hole under the right middle finger.
Fifes are made primarily of wood, such as: blackwood, grenadilla, rosewood, mopane, pink ivory, cocobolo, boxwood, maple and persimmon.
Fifes are most commonly used in Fife & Drum Corps, but can also be found in folk music, particularly Celtic music. Some Caribbean music makes use of fifes, which are usually made from bamboo.
Military and marching fifes have metal reinforcing bands around the ends to protect them from damage. These bands are called ferrules. Fifes used in less strenuous conditions sometimes have a lathe-turned, knob-like decoration at the ends for similar reasons. Some fifes are entirely made of metal or plastic. Modern fifes are two or three piece constructions, and incorporate a sliding tuning joint made of metal or cork.Firth of Forth
The Firth of Forth (Scottish Gaelic: Linne Foirthe) is the estuary (firth) of several Scottish rivers including the River Forth. It meets the North Sea with Fife on the north coast and Lothian on the south. It was known as Bodotria in Roman times. In the Norse sagas it was known as the Myrkvifiörd. An early Welsh name is Merin Iodeo, or the "Sea of Iudeu".Kingdom of Fife AFA
The Kingdom of Fife AFA is a football (soccer) league competition for amateur clubs in the Fife peninsula of Scotland. The association is affiliated to the Scottish Amateur Football Association. The association currently has three divisions. The league was created with the merger of Kingdom Caledonian Amateur Football Association and Fife Amateur Football Association.Kirkcaldy
Kirkcaldy ( (listen); Scottish Gaelic: Cair Chaladain) is a town and former royal burgh in Fife, on the east coast of Scotland. It is about 11.6 miles (19 km) north of Edinburgh and 27.6 miles (44 km) south-southwest of Dundee. The town had a recorded population of 49,460 in 2011, making it Fife's second-largest settlement and the 12th most populous settlement in Scotland.
Kirkcaldy has long been nicknamed the Lang Toun (listen ; Scots for "long town") in reference to the early town's 0.9-mile (1.4 km) main street, as indicated on maps from the 16th and 17th centuries. The street would finally reach a length of nearly 4 miles (6.4 km), connecting the burgh to the neighbouring settlements of Linktown, Pathhead, Sinclairtown and Gallatown, which became part of the town in 1876. The formerly separate burgh of Dysart was also later absorbed into Kirkcaldy in 1930 under an act of Parliament.
The area around Kirkcaldy has been inhabited since the Bronze Age. The first document to refer to the town is from 1075, when Malcolm III granted the settlement to the church of Dunfermline. David I later gave the burgh to Dunfermline Abbey, which had succeeded the church: a status which was officially recognised by Robert I in 1327. The town only gained its independence from Abbey rule when it was created a royal burgh by Charles I in 1644.
From the early 16th century, the establishment of a harbour at the East Burn confirmed the town's early role as an important trading port. The town also began to develop around the salt, coal mining and nail making industries.The production of linen which followed in 1672 was later instrumental in the introduction of floorcloth in 1847 by linen manufacturer, Michael Nairn. In 1877 this in turn contributed to linoleum, which became the town's most successful industry: Kirkcaldy was a world producer until well into the mid-1960s. The town expanded considerably in the 1950s and 1960s, though the decline of the linoleum industry and other manufacturing restricted its growth thereafter.
Today, the town is a major service centre for the central Fife area. Public facilities include a main leisure centre, theatre, museum and art gallery, three public parks and an ice rink. Kirkcaldy is also known as the birthplace of social philosopher and economist Adam Smith who wrote his magnum opus The Wealth of Nations in the town. In the early 21st century, employment is dominated by the service sector: the biggest employer in the town is PayWizard, formerly known as MGT plc (call centre). Other main employers include NHS Fife, Forbo (vinyl floor coverings), Fife College, Whitworths (flour millers) and Smith Anderson (paper making).List of California state symbols
This is a list of the officially designated symbols of the U.S. state of California. Most such designations are found in sections 420-429.8 of the California Government Code.List of civil parishes in Scotland
This is a list of the 871 civil parishes in Scotland.Louise, Princess Royal
Louise, Princess Royal and Duchess of Fife (Louise Victoria Alexandra Dagmar; 20 February 1867 – 4 January 1931) was the third child and the eldest daughter of the British king Edward VII and Alexandra of Denmark; she was a younger sister of George V. In 1905, her father gave her the title of Princess Royal, which is usually bestowed on the eldest daughter of the British monarch if there is no living holder (e.g. the monarch's sister, designated in the previous reign).Methil
Methil is an eastern coastal town in Scotland. It was first recorded as "Methkil" in 1207, and belonged to the Bishop of St. Andrews. Two Bronze Age cemeteries have been discovered which date the settlement as over eight thousand years old.
It was part of its own Barony in 1614 and also part of the former Burgh of Buckhaven, Methil and Innerleven. This burgh existed between 1891 and 1975 (following the reorganisation of local government). It is situated within a continuous urban area described as Levenmouth.
Methil lies geographically between Largo Bay to the east and Wemyss Bay to the west. Previously an industrial maritime powerhouse of the region and once Scotland's greatest coal port, it is now redirecting itself towards a green energy future. The River Leven delineates Methil from adjacent towns.North East Fife (UK Parliament constituency)
North East Fife is a county constituency in Fife, Scotland, represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament by Stephen Gethins since 2015.
At the 2017 General Election, two votes separated the SNP and the Liberal Democrat candidates out of 41,822 cast. The seat became the most marginal nationally.Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps
The United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps is one of four premier musical organizations of the United States Army. Members perform using musical instruments and wearing uniforms similar to those used by military musicians of the Continental Army during the American Revolution.
It is the only unit of its kind in the United States' armed forces, and is part of the 3rd U.S. Infantry ("The Old Guard"). The Fife and Drum Corps has been stationed at Fort Myer, Virginia, since its founding on February 23, 1960.Raith Rovers F.C.
Raith Rovers Football Club is a Scottish professional football club based in the town of Kirkcaldy, Fife. The club was founded in 1883 and currently competes in Scottish League One as a member of the Scottish Professional Football League, having been relegated from the Scottish Championship following defeat in the Championship play-off semi-finals in 2017.
The club's highest ever league position came in 1922, when it finished third behind champions Celtic and runners-up Rangers in Division One. The club has won two national trophies, the Scottish League Cup in 1994 by defeating Celtic after a penalty shoot-out and on 6 April 2014, Rovers won the 2013–14 Scottish Challenge Cup after beating Rangers 1–0 with a late goal from John Baird in extra time. The club were also runners-up in the 1949 League Cup Final as well as being losing finalists in the 1913 Scottish Cup Final. Below the top flight of Scottish football the club has won the second tier five times, finishing runners-up on the same number of occasions, the last coming in 2010–11 behind rivals Dunfermline Athletic.
As a result of winning the League Cup in 1994, Raith Rovers qualified for the UEFA Cup the following season. The club managed to reach the second round, only to be defeated 4–1 on aggregate to eventual champions Bayern Munich.
Raith's home ground is Stark's Park, an 8,867 all-seater stadium in the south of Kirkcaldy. The club has been based at the ground since 1891.Rosyth
Rosyth (listen) (Scottish Gaelic: Ros Fhìobh, "headland of Fife") is a town on the Firth of Forth, three miles (4.8 km) south of the centre of Dunfermline. According to the census of 2011, the town has a population of 13,440.The town was founded as a garden city and was built to form the coastal port of Dunfermline which began in 1909. Rosyth is almost contiguous with neighbouring Inverkeithing, separated only by the M90 motorway. Rosyth railway station is on the Fife Circle Line.St Andrews
St Andrews (Latin: S. Andrea(s); Scots: Saunt Aundraes; Scottish Gaelic: Cill Rìmhinn) is a town on the east coast of Fife in Scotland, 10 miles (16 km) southeast of Dundee and 30 miles (50 km) northeast of Edinburgh. St Andrews has a recorded population of 16,800 in 2011, making it Fife's fourth largest settlement and 45th most populous settlement in Scotland.
The town is home to the University of St Andrews, the third oldest university in the English-speaking world and the oldest in Scotland. According to some rankings, it is ranked as the third best university in the United Kingdom, behind Oxbridge. The University is an integral part of the burgh and during term time students make up approximately one third of the town's population.The town is named after Saint Andrew the Apostle. There has been an important church in St Andrews since at least the 747 AD when it was mentioned in the Annals of Tigernach, and a bishopric since at least the 11th century. The settlement grew to the west of St Andrews cathedral with the southern side of the Scores to the north and the Kinness burn to the south. The burgh soon became the ecclesiastical capital of Scotland, a position which was held until the Scottish Reformation. The famous cathedral, the largest in Scotland, now lies in ruins.
St Andrews is also known worldwide as the "home of golf". This is in part because The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, founded in 1754, which until 2004 exercised legislative authority over the game worldwide (except in the United States and Mexico). It is also because the famous St Andrews Links (acquired by the town in 1894) are the most frequent venue for The Open Championship, the oldest of golf's four major championships. Visitors travel to St Andrews in great numbers for several courses ranked amongst the finest in the world, as well as for the sandy beaches.
The Martyrs Memorial, erected to the honour of Patrick Hamilton, George Wishart, and other martyrs of the Reformation epoch, stands at the west end of the Scores on a cliff overlooking the sea. The civil parish has a population of 18,421 (in 2011).The town also contains numerous museums, a botanic garden and an aquarium.
Traditional provinces and districts of Scotland