A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer
of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and
Historical, edited by
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olmont (Gael. poll-monaidh, ` pool of the hill '), a village and a parish of E Stirlingshire. The village stands ¾ mile NNE of Polmont Junction on the North British railway, this being 45/8 miles W by N of Linlithgow, 22¼ W by N of Edinburgh, 3 E by S of Falkirk, and 25 ENE of Glasgow. It has a post office, with money order, savings' bank, and telegraph departments. Pop. (1861) 429, (1871) 455, (1881) 519.
The parish, containing also a small portion of Grangemouth, and the villages of Craigs, Redding, East Shieldhill, and Wallacestone, was disjoined from Falkirk in 1724. It is bounded NE by the Firth of Forth and Borrowstounness in Linlithgowshire, SE by Muiravonside, and SW and NW by Falkirk. Its utmost length, from NE to SW, is 6¼ miles; its breadth varies between 2½ furlongs and 3¼ miles; and its area is 7289½ acres, of which 1697¾ are foreshore and 791/3 water. The Firth of Forth, which washes the parish for a distance of 2 miles, from the mouth of the Carron to that of the Avon, is fringed at low water by an expanse of foreshore, 7 furlongs to 2 miles broad. The Avon winds 5½ miles west-north-westward and north-eastward along all the Linlithgowshire border; Grange or Westquarter Burn flows 3¼ miles north-north-westward, mainly along the Falkirk boundary, to the mouth of the Carron; and the Union Canal traverses the parish for 27/8 miles, from E to W, immediately S of the railway. The coast is low and flat; a broad tract inward thence is carse land, rising only 14 feet above sea-level, protected on the coast side by a strong embankment, and all too valuable to bear anything but grain; a tract southward thence, forming the middle district, has an undulating surface, and rises to altitudes of 253 and 263 feet; and the south-western extremity is partly undulating, partly moorish, and rises gradually to an eventual altitude of 552 feet. Much of the landscape is embellished and beautiful; and Many standpoints command extensive and brilliant views. The rocks belong chiefly to the Carboniferous formation, and include valuable strata of sandstone, coal, and ironstone, all of which have been largely worked. Excellent clay, too, abounds, and is used in two tile and brick works. Mineral springs, strongly impregnated with iron, are in several places. The soil of the carse lands is deep fine clay, quite free from stones, but abounding in marine shells; that of the other districts is partly clayey, partly mossy, but chiefly gravelly or sandy. About 120 acres are under wood; 650 are pastoral or waste; and all the rest of the land is in tillage. The principal mansions are Westquarter, Polmont Park, Polmont House, Polmont Bank, Parkhill, Clarkston, and Millfield; and the chief antiquity is part of the line of Antoninus' Wall, now destitute of every vestige of masonry or mound. The Duke of Hamilton takes from this parish the title of Baron Polmont (cre. 1643). Eight proprietors hold each an annual value of £500 and upwards, 17 of between £100 and £500. Giving off a portion to Grangemouth quoad sacra parish, Polmont is in the presbytery of Linlithgow and the synod of Lothian and Tweeddale; the living is worth £427. The old kirk, built in 1731, stands, an ivy-clad ruin, in the midst of the churchyard, its interior planted with roses, yews, and rhododendrons. The new parish church is a handsome Gothic edifice of 1844, and was adorned in 1876 with two stained memorial windows. Robert Henry, D.D. (1718-90), the historian of England, is buried in the churchyard. There is also a Free church at Polmont village. Six schools, with total accommodation for 861 children, had (1884) an average attendance of 666, and grants amounting to £552, 11s. Valuation (1860) £14, 501, (1884) £27, 781, 11s. 6d. Pop. (1801) 2197, (1831) 3210, (1861) 4111, (1871) 3910, (1881) 3955, of whom 3861 were in the ecclesiastical parish.Ord. Sur., sh. 31, 1867.
An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is
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