- Irvine, North Ayrshire
Infobox UK place
postcode_district= KA11 - KA12
constituency_westminster= Central Ayrshire
Ayrshire and Arran
constituency_scottish_parliament= Cunninghame South
Irvine (Gaelic: "Irbhinn") is a coastal
new townin North Ayrshire, Scotland.
The town was once a haunt of
Robert Burns, after whom two streets in the town are named: Burns Street and Burns Crescent. He is known to have worked in a flax mill on the Glasgow Vennell. Despite being classed as a new town, Irvine has had a long history stretching back many centuries and was classed as a Royal Burgh. There are also conflicting rumours that Mary, Queen of Scots was briefly involved in the town's history. Some say she stayed briefly at Seagate Castle. To this day there is still an annual festival, called Marymass, held in the town.
Irvine is the birthplace of the present
Deputy First Ministerof Scotland, Nicola Sturgeonand the former First Ministerof Scotland, Jack McConnell. Its twin town is Saint-Amand-les-Eauxin northern Francejust outside Lille.
The harbour for Irvine has a long history and once was one of the most prominent ports in Scotland after
Glasgow. Across from the main harbour itself there was a terminal for the ICI-Nobel Explosives plant on the River Garnock. Much of the harbour went into decline in the 19th century when Glasgow, Greenockand Port Glasgowachieved higher prominence as sea ports. Despite this, there was still commercial sea traffic, though the harbour went into further decline in the 20th century. The main shipping in the 20th century was light coastal traffic and vessels destined for the Nobel Explosives facility. This facility had its own quay, which, although now disused, is still visible from Irvine Harbour. A shipyardon the River Irvine, the Ayrshire Dockyard Company, remained active until after World War II, though its last ship was built just prior to the war.
Afterwards it was involved in refitting ships and also in the manufacture of fittings for other vessels including the Cunard liner
Queen Elizabeth 2. Irvine Harbour is now officially closed as a commercial portand houses a small number of privately owned pleasure craft. It is also home to part of the Scottish Maritime Museumwith numerous vessels on display, including the 'Spartan', one of the last surviving Clyde puffers.
Irvine Harbour is home to a unique and distinctive building which marked the
tidelevel. It was built in 1906 and devised by Martin Boyd, the harbourmasterat that time. The Automatic tide signalling apparatus indicated the tide's state in two ways depending on the time of day. During daylight, the level was marked with a ball and pulleysystem attached to the mast. At night, a number of lamps marked the tidal level. Unfortunately the building has fallen into some disrepair and the mast partially dismantled. There have been plans to try to refurbish this unusual building which so far, has come to nothing.The harbour and surrounding area became an area heavily blighted by industrial waste even long after some of the industries were gone. There was a waste bing known by the locals as 'The Blue Billy' due to the colour of the waste there. During World War IIa Royal Observer Corpswatchtower was sited here giving a wide overall view of the Firth of Clyde. It is also credited with the first visual sighting of Rudolf Hess's Messerschmitt 110in 1941.
Irvine Harbour was a prime target for
Adolf Hitler's invasion of the British Isles, being a major boating district and also in near vicinity to the ICIweapons development.
As part of the Millennium celebrations, an exhibition known as 'The Big Idea' (now closed, 2006) was constructed on the north side of the
River Irvinenear the former Nobel quay. A footbridge from the harbour area was constructed, although it had to be able to open and close to still allow the small pleasure craft to pass.
The hulk of the historic clipper ship, City of Adelaide, was moved to a dry dock near the inner harbour in 1992. [ [http://cityofadelaide.org.au/content/view/46/90/ Clipper Ship 'City of Adelaide' - Timeline ] ]
Unlike most new towns which were either completely newly built or based around small villages, Irvine was already a sizeable town which had been a
Royal Burghsince 1372. A quango, the Irvine Development Corporation (IDC), was set up in the 1960s to oversee the development of Irvine as a ' new town'. The organisation was given the planning powers of the Royal Burgh of Irvine Town Council, Kilwinning Town Council and the Irvine Landward District Council. This involved massive and sometimes controversial development of the old parts of the town. Irvine was officially designated as a New Townin 1966, the fifth and last to be developed in Scotlandand the only 'new town' to be located on the coast. The other Scottish 'New Towns' were East Kilbride, Glenrothes, Cumbernauldand Livingston.
IDC was widely criticised for some of their actions including the demolition of large swathes of the
Fullartonpart of the town, the Bridge and most of Bridgegate in 1972 and 1973. One positive development of IDC's was the Irvine Beach Park from 1975 and the Magnum Leisure Centre opened in 1976. This area, behind the harbour had been largely industrial wasteland for many years and was regarded as an eyesore. The area was developed with vast amounts of greenery making it a pleasant place to walk. IDC, and also the Urban Regeneration Company, have plans to redevelop much of the waterfront area. Surrounding towns and villages along the coastline are included in a number of the regeneration proposals.
The provisions of The New Town (Irvine) Winding Up Order 1993 officially ended the New Town Designation on
31 December 1996. This marked the end of the Irvine Development Corporation and the return of full planning control of the area back to the local authority.
Irvine was granted its first
Burgh Charterin around 1249. This entitled the town to organise its own affairs under a Town Council. In circa 1372 a dispute arose between Irvine and Ayras to which of the two burghs had rights to control trade in the Barony of Cunninghame and Barony of Largs. The Burgesses of Irvine were able to produce Royal Charters showing that the town had the right to control trade in the Baronies of Cunninghame and Largs. The dispute was resolved by Robert II's Royal Charterof 8 April 1372conferring Royal Burgh status.
Fullartonremained outwith the Royal Burgh of Irvine as a distinct village and latterly burgh in its own right in the Parishof Dundonalduntil the Irvine Burgh Act 1881 extended the town's boundaries.
Irvine continued to administer itself with the usual
Royal Burghadministrative arrangements of Provost, Bailies and Burgesses. Responsibility for public health, schools and strategic services such as roads passed to Ayr County Council in 1930 when the town was re-classified as a Small Burgh. On 16 May 1975the Royal Burgh of Irvine Town Council was abolished and its functions were transferred to the now defunct CunninghameDistrict Council. One of the last acts of the old town council was to present the bulk of the Royal Burgh records and the Provost's regalia to the Irvine Burns Club Museum on Eglinton Street.
There is a
Community councilin Irvine. However, unlike counterparts elsewhere in Scotland, it opts not to use 'Royal Burgh of' in its title.
The motto used on the coat of arms of the Royal Burgh is 'Tandem Bona Causa Triumphat.' This means the Good Cause Triumphs in the end.
The Scottish Parliament Constituency of Cunninghame South is currently held by the Labour Party. The
Member of the Scottish Parliamentis Irene Oldfather
Irvine is well served with numerous transport links. A railway station, originally built by the
Glasgow and South Western RailwayCompany, is situated at the west end of the town which is on the main line between Stranraerand Glasgow. The railway company responsible for local routes is First ScotRailwho operate the carmine and cream liveried Diesel and Electric Multiple unitsof the former Strathclyde Passenger TransportExecutive. A comprehensive local bus network, coupled with frequent services to Ardrossan, Greenock, Kilmarnock, Ayr, Troonand Glasgow, is provided by Stagecoach West Scotland.
There are two primary road crossings over the River Irvine, the more southerly of which has been criticised for some years. It is situated on the site of the former Irvine to
Kilmarnockrailway link which has long since been closed. The bridge over the river there has long been unsuitable for heavy traffic being of a Bailey Bridgedesign which has been constantly repaired over the years. North Ayrshire Councilhas announced plans to renew the bridge in a £2m investment scheduled to start in 2007.
Irvine is also well served by several arterial roads, namely the A78 (Greenock to
Prestwick), A71 (Irvine to Kilmarnock and beyond to Edinburgh), A737 (through the Garnock Valleyto Glasgow International Airportand the M8) and the A736 (to Barrheadand Govan).
;Irvine's local bus service
"Local routes provided by
Stagecoach WesternBuses Ltd."
*2 Irvine Magnum Centre to
Kilmarnockvia Dundonald, extends to Darvel
*14 Irvine to
*22 The Castlepark area to the Perceton area (
*23 Hunter Drive in the Ravenspark area from the town centre.
*25/25A Irvine to
*26 Irvine Railway Station to
Dreghornvia the Broomlands area
*27 Local service which extends to
*28 Irvine to the
*29 Local service
"Express routes from the town provided by Stagecoach"
Ayrvia Irvine to Paisleywhich extends to Breahead Shopping Centre.
Glasgowwhich goes through Kilwinningand uses the A737 route to Glasgow via Dalryand Beith.
Glasgowwhich goes through Girdle Toll. This route uses the A736 via Barrhead.
Ayrto Greenock. This route uses the A78.
"Other routes provided by other companies"
Irvine New Town Trail
The Irvine New Town Trail passes through a lot of the surrounding areas of Irvine; it forms part of the British National Cycle Network with routes 7 and 73 forming part of the route. The route forms a ring around the town and passes through
Kilwinning, Bourtreehill, Girdle Toll and Dreghornand passes through the town centre of Irvine.
Colin B. Liddell, the editor of the Tokyo Journalwas born in nearby Kilwinning and was a resident of Irvine from 1976 to 1985.
David Sillar, good friend to Robert Burns, is also buried nearby.
Edgar Allan Poespent a little time in a hotel on Bridgegate as a child. Close relatives of his foster father John Allan lie buried in the parish churchyard.
Elspeth Buchan, the founder of the Buchanites, an odd society of the Burnsian days which was launched in Irvine.
Graeme Obree, Scottish racing cyclist and former world hour record holder, lives near Irvine.
Graeme Robertson, actor, "P.C.Kirk" in STV's "High Road" was born in the town in 1965.
James Montgomerythe Christian poet was born on the Halfway, Fullarton in 1771. The street was renamed in his honour as Montgomery Street.
Jack McConnellFormer First Minister for Scotland.
James Steadman, the possible inventor of the screw propeller is buried in the parishchurchyard.
* John Galt, the author, born in 1779. His family moved to
Greenockin 1789. Known as an associate of Lord Byronand the author of novels depicting Scottish rural life.
Kris Boyd, former Kilmarnock and now Rangers and Scotland striker was born in the town in 1983.
Alex BoydPhotographer known for his landscape and music work is a resident of the town.
Nicola Sturgeonthe Scottish Government's Deputy First Minister for Scotland.
Roddy Woomble, lead singer for Scottish band Idlewild, was born in Irvine in 1976.
Ross Tollerton, awarded the Victoria Crossfor his actions at the Battle of the Aisnein 1914.
Steve Nicol, former Liverpooland Sheffield Wednesdayfootballer was born in Irvine.
Simon Neil, guitarist and lead singer for Scottish band Biffy Clyro
Alfred Nobelbuilt an explosives factory in Ardeer which sits on the opposing bank of the River Irvine's mouth.
Daniel Defoewas a spy. One of his 'missions' included a survey of Irvine's harbourand port.
Edward I of Englandalso known as Longshankspossibly camped in Irvine.
Mary I of Scotlandis known to have slept at Eglinton Castlein Kilwinningand legend states she stopped at Seagate Castleon her journey the next day. A stone, believed to commemorate the visit, has been found in Irvine. It is inscribed MQ 1560.
Napoleon III of Francewas invited to the famous Eglinton Tournamentwhich took place at Eglinton Castlenear Kilwinningand resided at parre-terre in the centre of town.
Frederick II of Prussia(also known as Frederick the Great) after a trip to Irvine, visited Perceton before returning to Potsdamnear Berlin.
* Sir Charles Lamb of Beauport is not to be confused with
Sir Charles Lamband has a fairly obscure history. Among other achievements he was the Knight Marshall to the Royal Householdduring the coronation of Queen Victoria.
William Wallaceenjoyed the fishingand fighting around the River Irvine. Most of his early exploits are firmly placed in the Irvine Valley. He was possibly present at the Capitulation of Irvine.
William Boothof The Salvation Armyvisited on his motorcade tour of Great Britain.
Irvine 'Old Town'
* [http://www.irvinebayurc.co.uk/irvine Irvine Bay Regeneration Company website]
* [http://www.north-ayrshire.gov.uk/na/DevelopProm.nsf/36e3faebea4c5c2280256e82002f5ea4/e67830763a971f3c80256f6d0038cdd0?OpenDocument Irvine's New Town Trail official page]
* [http://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/irvine/irvine/index.html Undiscovered Scotland- Irvine featurepage]
* [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/6654519.stm "Building Towns for the future"]
* [http://www.murraydunloparchitects.com/news/news-06-04-06-newtowns.htm "New Towns: Can They Be Given New Life?"]
Surroundings villages, hamlets and items of interest
Boyd's Automatic tide signalling apparatus
* Cadgers' Racecourse
Cleeves Cove cave
Eglinton Country Park
Irvine New Town Trail
Laigh Milton Viaduct
Saint Inan's Well
* The Powder Magazine.
* The Old Parish Church.
*Cowling, D (1997) "An Essay for Today: the Scottish New Towns 1947-1997" (Rutland Press, Edinburgh)
*McJannet, A (1938) "The Royal Burgh of Irvine"
*Pettigrew, D (1997) "Old Irvine"
*Stirrat, N (1998) "Irvine"
*Strawhorn, J (1985) "The History of Irvine: From Royal Burgh to New Town"
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Look at other dictionaries:
North Ayrshire — Sìorrachd Inbhir Àir a Tuath Location Geography Area Ranked … Wikipedia
North Ayrshire — Sìorrachd Inbhir Air a Tuath Información Capital: Irvine Población Total Densidad de población 136.020 h. (2004) 154 hab/km² Supe … Wikipedia Español
North Ayrshire — Sìorrachd Inbhir Air a Tuath Verwaltungssitz Irvine Fläche 885 km² … Deutsch Wikipedia
North Ayrshire (UK Parliament constituency) — North Ayrshire Former County constituency for the House of Commons Subdivisions of Scotland Ayrshire 1868 ( … Wikipedia
North Ayrshire — [ nɔːθ eə ʃɪə], Verwaltungs Distrikt (seit 1996) in Schottland, 884 km2, 139 000 Einwohner; Verwaltungssitz ist Irvine … Universal-Lexikon
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North Ayrshire and Arran (UK Parliament constituency) — Coordinates: 55°38′13″N 4°54′54″W / 55.637°N 4.915°W / 55.637; 4.915 … Wikipedia
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North Ayrshire — /nɔθ ˈɛəʃɪə/ (say nawth airshear), / ʃə/ (say shuh) noun an administrative district in western central Scotland; part of the former county of Ayrshire which was included in Strathclyde region in 1975; formed as a unitary district in 1996. 884 km2 … Australian English dictionary