Thornhill, Dumfriesshire

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Monument to Joseph Thomson, African Explorer - - 1389934.jpg
Joseph Thomson's monument, Thornhill
Location: 55°14’20"N, 3°46’1"W
Population: 1,512  (2001)
Post town: Thornhill
Postcode: DG3
Dialling code: 01848
Local Government
Council: Dumfries and Galloway
Dumfries and Galloway

Thornhill is a small town in Dumfriesshire, lying the middle stretch of Nithsdale, south of Sanquhar and north of Dumfries on the main A76 road. The Carsphairn Hills and Scaur Hills rise to the west and the Lowther Hills to the east. This was initially a small village, planned and built in 1717 on the Queensberry Estate on the road linking Dumfries to Glasgow.

The town is primarily comprised a grid pattern with the main street of Drumlanrig Street (the A76), East and West Morton Streets, New Street, Townhead Street and Gill Road (the A702).

Near the town stands Drumlanrig Castle, a 17th-century turreted mansion once the ancient Douglas stronghold, now home to the Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry.


This is not an ancient place, a town whose foundation was in 1717, but it bears monuments to great men and founders. A monument to the explorer Joseph Thomson (after whom the Thomson's Gazelle is named) stands in the town; he lived in neighbouring Penpont and Gatelawbridge. There is also a column topped by a winged horse, the emblem of the Marquesses of Queensberry, in the centre of the town.

Helen Armstrong, née Hyslop worked for thirty years at the Buccleuch Arms as a cook. She is said to have been an illegitimate daughter of Robert Burns and Helen Hyslop from Moffat.

Samuel Wallace, a Victoria Cross recipient, was born in the town.

The Very Reverend Dr James Harkness, first non-Anglican Chaplain-General of the UK Armed Forces and Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 1995, is from Thornhill.[1]

About the village

Thornhill has a bowling green, a golf course[2] and is renowned for the excellent fishing in the nearby River Nith and tributaries.

Thornhill though not grand has a good variety of shops; clothes shops, cafés, pubs, food shops, a large pharmacy, an ironmonger, an electrical retailer, gift shops and two hairdressers. The large Victorian post office stands on the north side of the town, along with a Royal Mail sorting office which serves a large rural area.

The town also has a public wash rooms,[3] more than somewhat rare these days, and a small cottage hospital.

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Thornhill, Dumfriesshire)


  1. Who's Who 2008: London, A & C Black, 2008 ISBN 978-0-7136-8555-8
  2. "". Retrieved 2014-02-27. 
  3. "Dumfries and Galloway Council : Thornhill Library and Customer Service Centre". 2014-01-20. Retrieved 2014-02-27.