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Grid reference: NO235115
Location: 56°17’23"N, 3°14’15"W
Population: 2,010  (2001)
Post town: Cupar
Postcode: KY14
Dialling code: 01337
Local Government
Council: Fife
North East Fife

Auchtermuchty is a small town and royal burgh in Fife, set beside Pitlour Hill nine miles north of Glenrothes. It is a frequent stopping place for sporting visitors as it stands on the main road to the world famous golf courses at St Andrews.

The town's name is from the Gaelic Uachdar Mucadaidh, meaning "Field of Boars".

This is a quiet but thriving community, situated amidst the Fifeshire countryside, which is strung several local recreational footpaths. There is a modest range of local industry, but most people of working age travel out of the town for employment.


Auchtermuchty received the status of a royal burgh by charter of King James V in 1517. There is evidence of human habitation in the area dating back over 2,000 years, and the Romans are known to have established a camp in the southeast corner of the town.

In the past, the linen industry was a major source of work in the town, but in the early 18th century the firm of John White was established, bringing the town its first foundry (there were two eventually). There was even a distillery in operation from 1829 to 1929, when Prohibition in the United States led to its closure.


A festival is held each year in August.

Auchtermuchty in popular culture

The late Sir John Junor, Editor in Chief of the Sunday Express and a forthright columnist would often use the town as a paradigm of British respectability. His frequent phrase was:

"I wonder what the ladies of Auchtermuchty would say about that?"

Although he was a frequent visitor, Sir John was not an Auchtermuchty man. Anyone though may take pleasure in its feel-in-the-mouth name.

Auchtermuchty was the setting for The Wife of Auchtermuchty, a comic Scots poem of the late Middle Ages.

The town was used as the location for Tannochbrae in the 1990s ITV series Dr Finlay.

The town's church is mentioned in James Hogg's The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner.

The town gets a mention in The Family Ness theme song, You'll Never Find A Nessie In The Zoo, in the refrain "You can go to Auchtermuchty and to Drumnadrochit too, but you'll never find a Nessie in the zoo".

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