St Andrews

Classification and Statistics

Settlement Type: small town
Population (2011): 16870    
(2001): 14209
(1991): 11136
(1981): 11368
(1971): 11630
(1961): 9882
(1951): 9457
(1901): 7621
(Parliamentary Burgh)
(1881): 6458
(1871): 6244
(1861): 5141
(1831): 4462
(1801): 3263

Tourist Rating: Four Stars
Text of Entry Updated: 27-AUG-2019

Latitude: 56.3383°N Longitude: 2.7958°W
National Grid Reference: NO 509 165
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The older part of St. Andrews rests on the beach of a former shoreline some 23m (70 feet) above the present mean sea level and at the North Haugh the newer university buildings stand on a lower raised beach eroded by the sea. Between the West Sands and East Sands which look onto the North Sea there are sandstone, mudstone and limestone cliffs with some coal seams. To the southeast, Kinkell Braes provide a paradise for geologists.

St. Andrews got a railway station in 1852, initially the terminus of a short branch line from Leuchars Junction. However the line was extended in 1887 to form the Fife Coast Railway, but this was closed in 1969 as a result of the Beeching rationalisation. The nearest railway station is now Leuchars (6 miles / 10 km to the northwest).

Changed little over the past 300 years, St. Andrews is a good example of a Mediaeval planned burgh comprising two roughly parallel streets - North Street and South Street - converging upon the Cathedral. Between them runs Market Street whose name reflects its function. The old city is surrounded by a wall, much of which is still preserved and there are numerous squares and narrow connecting closes and wynds. Designated an episcopal burgh in 1140, the city of St. Andrews generated income for the clergy until the Reformation when King James VI made the town into a Royal Burgh.

The Earldom of St. Andrews is a Royal title held by the eldest son of the Duke of Kent.

St. Andrews is the chief residential community of NE Fife. It is a university town in addition to being a major centre of tourism and the sport of golf. Tourists stay in large numbers during the summer months, while students represent around 42% of the population. The town also has a number of craft and service industries.
References and Further Reading
Cant, R.G. (ed.) (1975) St Andrews, The Handbook of the St Andrews Preservation Trust to the city and its buildings. St Andrews Preservation Trust, St Andrews
Gifford, John (1988) The Buildings of Scotland: Fife. Penguin, London

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