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Annan river bridge - Oct 2006.JPG
Bridge over the River Annan
Grid reference: NY194669
Location: 54°58’59"N, 3°15’58"W
Population: 8,389  (2001)
Post town: Annan
Postcode: DG12
Dialling code: 01461
Local Government
Council: Dumfries and Galloway
Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale
and Tweeddale

Annan is a town and royal burgh in Dumfriesshire, close to the mouth of the River Annan.

A well-built town, its red sandstone buildings are distinctive. Amongst its public buildings is Annan Academy of which the writer Thomas Carlyle was a pupil, Bridge House, a Georgian building, and the Town Hall, built in 1878. Annan also has a Historic Resources Centre. In Port Street, some of the windows remain blocked up, a legacy of the window tax.

Geography and administration

Annan stands on the River Annan nearly 2 miles from its mouth on the Solway Firth, 15 miles east of the county town of Dumfries. Eastriggs lies about 3 miles to the east and Gretna about 8 miles to the east.

Annan Bridge, a stone bridge of three arches, built between 1824 and 1827, carries road traffic over the River Annan. It was designed by Robert Stevenson and built by John Lowry. There is also a railway bridge and a nearby pedestrian bridge over the River Annan

The town is served by Annan railway station. The train turntable was designed and developed in Annan, it can be seen today in the York Railway Museum.


Roman remains exist in the neighbourhood but the town first rose to prominence in the Middle Ages. Annan Castle formed the original home of the 'de Brus' family, later known as the "Bruces", lords of Annandale, which most famously produced King Robert I; Robert the Bruce. The Balliols and the Douglases were also more or less closely associated with Annan. During the period of the Border lawlessness the inhabitants suffered repeatedly at the hands of moss-troopers and through the feuds of rival families, in addition to the losses caused by the Scottish Wars of Independence. It was at Annan in December 1332 that Bruce supporters overwhelmed Balliol's forces to bring about the end of the first invasion of Scotland in the Second War of Scottish Independence.

Annan served as a maritime town whose shipbuilding yards built many clippers and other boats. A cairn on the jetty commemorates Robert Burns, who worked as an exciseman here in the 1790s. Although the port is now mainly dry, a few stranded boats remain.

Annan Academy has a history that goes back to the 17th century; its current buildings include modern 1960s built buildings and older buildings on St John's Road.


Annan Church - - 225428.jpg

The local churches are members together of Annandale Churches Together [1].


Just outside the town, the Chapelcross nuclear power station has now shut down and is decommissioning. The four cooling towers were demolished in 2007.

Nearby, John Maxwell, 4th Lord Herries, built Hoddom Castle (circa 1552 - 1565).

To the east of the town lies the settlement of Watchill and the similarly-named Watchhall.

Part of the A75 road, between Annan and Dumfries, is reported to be haunted.[1][2]


  1. Cohen, Daniel; Marchesi, Stephen (1992). "The Annan Road Horrors". Railway Ghosts and Highway Horrors. London: Apple. pp. 61-66. ISBN 0-590-45423-4. 
  2. rale (June 18, 2010). "The Four Most Frightening Roads You Can Travel". Weird Worm. Retrieved 27 January 2011. 

Outside links