A village at the eastern extremity of Falkirk Council area, situated 4 miles (7 km) northeast of Linlithgow, on the south shore of the Firth of Forth overlooking Blackness Bay. A royal charter of 1389 gave Blackness to serve as the port for Linlithgow, until superseded by Bo'ness in 1680, it developed in the shadow of Blackness Castle, from which it is separated by parkland. Nothing of the original settlement survives. Today, Blackness consists of a 19th Century core, with a small public housing estate to the east (c.1960). To the west is Blackness House which was the seat of the Wedderburn family. Blackness Castle, which stands on a promontory to the northeast of the village, was built in the 1440s and was one of the chief strongholds of central Scotland in late mediaeval times. Under the Articles of Union it was one of the four castles in Scotland which had to be left fortified. In 1870 it became an ammunition depot and in the 1920s it was restored. Blackness achieved some popularity as a seaside resort in the early years of the 20th C.