Crossford, Fife

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Crrossford Main Street
Grid reference: NT068866
Location: 56°3’42"N, 3°30’6"W
Population: 2,358
Dialling code: 01383
Local Government
Council: Fife
Dunfermline & West Fife

Crossford is a village in the western parts of Fife. Its recorded population in 2011 was 2,358.

Crossford is one mile west of Dunfermline, east of Cairneyhill, astride the A994 (known in Crossford as Main Street). It is two miles north of the Firth of Forth and seventeen miles from Edinburgh.

The village has mixed housing with large housing estates on the southwest and northwest ends. Most residents work either locally or commute to Edinburgh or Glasgow.

Big Society

At the park there is a Scout hall (with Scouts and Girl Guides held weekly).

On the Main Street, the Village Hall is used by a variety of organisations including; Crossford Playgroup, Crossford Ladies Group, SWRI, Zumba classes, religious meetings, Crossford Community Council.

The highlights of the social year in Crossford are probably the Children's Gala events held over the year to raise funds for the November Fireworks and the Gala Week, with daily events, each June. The Children's Gala has been held since 1955 and is organised by the Crossford Gala Committee for children from the village.

Businesses and employment

The village has a small range of local sjhops, including a pharmacy with Post Office, supermarket, hairdresser, beauty salon, garage and chip shop.

The Pitfirrane Hotel in the centre of the village is one of the few original coaching inns left in Fife.[1]

The Keavil House Hotel stands in twelve acres of grounds to the west of Crossford[2] and its meeting facilities, restaurant and health club with swimming pool are an amenity for the village and surrounding area.

Leisure and sport

Crossford has a King George V Playing Field, opened in 1950 by the Countess of Elgin and named the King George V Memorial Park. The land was a gift from the Halkett family of the Pitfirrane Estate. The community itself paid for the establishing of the facilities together with a Major Fiddes of the National Playing Fields Association. New recreation and sports facilities in King George V Memorial Park were developed as a "Millenium" project by CREATE (Crossford REcreation And The Environment) on behalf of Crossford Community Council. The floodlit All Weather Playing Pitch was unveiled on 8 May 2005 and is available for 5-five-aside-fottball, tennis, basketball, hockey & netball.[3] CREATE & Fife Council also provided new children's play equipment, a Youth Shelter, Community Garden and a Woodland Walk helping to link the two areas of the village either side of the A994. To the southeast of Crossford the Dunfermline Golf Club[4] has an 18-hole golf course. The Halkett family owned the Pitfirrane Estate until 1951, living in the Pitfirrane Castle which has become the clubhouse.

Crossford is an ideal centre for walking. Numerous pathways radiate from the village, to Dean Woods and Milesmark in the north, to Pitliver and Limekilns/Charlestown in the south, to Cairneyhill in the west and to Pittencrieff Park at Dunfermline, in the east. To the north of the village, near Dean Woods, there is a paved cycle track which extends from Dunfermline to Clackmannan.


Crossford can trace its history back into the distant past: Bronze Age discoveries have been made on Craigs Farm indicating agricultiural activity into antiquity.[5]

Crossford is said to take its name from the ford crossed by monks on their way between the abbeys of Dunfermline and Culross. and together with the early agricultural activity this seems to form the main part of the activity in the village. In the 16th century the village found a new life as coal and ironstone were mined from the lands of Pitfirrane under a charter granted to the Lairds of Pitfirrane (the Halkett family) by Queen Mary. The produce of this activity was then transported down the Waggon Road to Limekilns for shipping via the port there. The Halketts enjoyed a privilege to ship free of duty to all foreign lands until 1788, when the government purchased the right for £40,000. The uppermost 4 inches and lowermost 2 inches of ironstone were said to be of such high quality as to be suitable for the making of cannon, and the produce was shipped to the Carron Company ironworks for that purpose.[5]

The introduction of the Turnpike Act in 1796 brought about the installation of a tollbar on the Waggon Road. The building housing this still exists on the crossroads in the centre of the village.

At the beginning of the 19th century it is recorded that some 50 handloom were in use in the village with a population of 380 persons. This follows a pattern in the area for such weaving communities, another example being Gowkhall a few miles North.

The Earls of Elgin owned land in the Crossford area in connection with the Elgin Colliery (at Parkneuk and Baldridge Burn, north west of Dunfermline) and the Elgin Railway that ran from the colliery round Crossford and then down beside Waggon Road and on to Charlestown harbour. The route of the railway and the site of the Elgin Colliery are shown in a map in Chalmers' book, Historical and Statistical Account of Dunfermline.[6]

In the 19th century there was a brewery at the west end of the village, and whinstone quarry to the north of the main road.

During the First World War, the modern day Keavil House Hotel was used by the Admiralty as a location to base high-ranking officers, close to the naval base at Rosyth. During 1917 the First Sea Lord, Prince Louis of Battenburg and his son (later the Earl Mountbatten of Burma) were in residence when their names were officially changed to Mountbatten in order to reduce the Germanic image during the war. Prince Louis wrote in the visitors book at Keavil "July 9th: arrived Prince Hyde. July19th: departed Lord Jekyll."

From 1955 until 1975/6, the building was used as the Martha Frew Childrens Home for children placed in care by Dunfermline town council. Responsibility shifted between the newly formed Fife Regional Council and Dunfermline District Councils before being sold privately and renovated as a hotel in 1978/9.

At Crossford too is Pitfirrane Castle, a 16th-century 4 storey towerhouse. In modern times this has become home to the Dunfermline Golf Club. The building has been modified and extended in recent years, but still maintains some impressive stained glass and much of its original stature.


The land around Crossford is fertile and sought after for agriculture. There is a designated Green Belt at the south-east of the village, between Waggon Road and Dunfermline which attracts a variety of birdlife; pheasant, wild geese, curlew, heron and others.

On the southwest corner, near Keavil Steadings, is the Crossford sycamore, of about 300 years — a significant heritage tree which is recorded in the veteran tree register.

The Crossford Burn comes from the Dean Wood, in the north and travels through the village to join the Lyne Burn near the railway at the south.

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Crossford, Fife)


  1. "The Pitfirrane Hotel". Retrieved 2007-03-10. 
  2. Keavil House Hotel
  3. "New Pars boss to launch sports facilities for Crossford". Sport Scotland. 2005. Retrieved 2007-03-10. 
  4. "Dunfermline Golf Club". 2007. Retrieved 2007-03-10. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 Pitcairn, Sheila (2000). A History of The old "Fitpaths" and streets of Dunfermline then, and now. Kelso Graphics. Template:Listed Invalid ISBN. 
  6. Rev. Peter Chalmers, Historical and Statistical Account of Dunfermline, Edinburgh: William Blackwood and Sons, 1846, Plate I.