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Pictures of Arbroath

in the county of Angus

About Arbroath

This is a colourful resort and fishing port which is home to the famous "Smokies", a haddock flavoured fish, browned by the smoke from an oak fire. The pleasant aroma from the smoking process pervades through the streets, often heightening the appetite, hastening a break for lunch in one of the town's delightful restaurants, cafe's or fish n' chip shops!

Arbroath lies on the North Sea coast of Scotland, it is internationally known as the home of the Declaration of Arbroath, a statement of Scottish independence signed by the nobility in the 14th-century. The town's ancient ruined abbey, founded in 1178 by King William the Lion, makes a dramatic backdrop for re-enactments of the declaration, it is essentially a charming pageant of medieval Scottish baron's, their ladies, richly garbed churchmen and heralds, all led by Robert the Bruce robed in full ceremonial finery on horse-back.

Arbroath's scenic harbour is a true delight, it is surrounded with tall colour-washed houses overlooking a string of beautiful sea-going craft. One of the pleasures of the harbour is to watch the local fishermen landing crab and lobster in the late afternoon sun, it is then that the ocean, with its creamy tinged waves, is at its most romantic. Arbroath's harbour was first constructed and maintained by the Abbots of the 14th-century, by the 18th-century it was a flourishing port and was further enlarged in the 19th-century. The famous Bell Rock Lighthouse was built in 1807. The shore station for the lighthouse, the Bell Rock Signal Tower, was built in 1813, this became a lifeline for the keepers off-shore and today the building is converted to provide a visitor centre covering the history of the lighthouse and the men who manned it.

The seafront at Arbroath is a vibrant, lively place, never more so than when one of its famous festivals is being staged. Every August a Seafest is held, this celebrates the town's close links with the North Sea, and includes - a yacht race taking participants round the coast passing spectacular sand-stone cliffs to the north, rescue displays by The Royal National Lifeboat Institution, musical performances by local artists, pipe and brass bands, there is a Gourmet Galley where Chefs prepare delicious seafood dishes, and in the inner harbour, a raft race.

Another spectacular event is held in Victoria Park, this is military based and features the dynamic Red Arrows giving one of their famous aerobatic displays. Victoria Park was opened in 1897 to celebrate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee, it is a spacious landscape with lovely flower filled gardens. Visitors to the park can see the site of St. Ninian's Well. The well, located at the end of the park is scooped out of the cliff face, it has a reputation for curing a number of diseases.

The town is home to a Blues festival, this is held in a marquee at Inchcape Common and has sufficient rhythm and blues music to satisfy the most demanding "Blues" lover. This festival is known as "The Arbroath Smokie Blues Festival" it offers visitors over thirty exciting acts.

Arbroath has theatre, football and other leisure facilities. It was the home of John Fraser a member of the Fraser Engineering family of Arbroath. He became a keen amateur photographer when photography was in its infancy. John had a keen eye for a captivating subject, behind him he has left some extraordinary stills on life as it was in the town during the turn of the last century.

Other noted Arbroathians are - Sir Harry Lauder who lived in the town until the age of 14, David Dunbar Buick founder of the Buick Motor Company, James Chalmers the inventor of the adhesive postage stamp and more latterly Dominick Chalmers TV presenter.

Arbroath is truly picturesque, it is a resort with something for everyone, it has history, a fine harbour, wonderful red sandstone cliffs pierced by caves which can be visited on foot or by sea, and magical sea views. It is an ideal place to relax for a few days fishing or simply lazing around soaking up the atmosphere. For the more adventurous there are the many festivals, and for anyone wishing to escape the crowds you could do no better than spend time in any one of several close by villages, these include the tiny fishing village of Auchmithie, historical St. Vigeans and Carmyllie.

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