Perth and Kinross

A village of Strath Allan, SW Perth and Kinross, Blackford lies in a parish of the same name adjacent to the A9 road between Stirling and Perth. It was from ancient times a ford over the Allan Water, and the 'black' is said to recall the accidental drowning of 'The Fair Queen Helen', wife of Norwegian King Magnus, while crossing here. She was buried nearby. Destroyed by retreating Jacobites in January 1716, shortly after the Battle of Sheriffmuir, the village was subsequently rebuilt in a linear form. It was a noted centre of brewing in the Middle Ages, a trade enhanced in 1488 when King James IV stopped to taste the ale and gave it his approval. Today, Blackford is better known for the Tullibardine Distillery, which began production in 1949, and as the source and bottling plant for Highland Spring mineral water. Highland Spring have opened a rail-freight terminal on the adjacent Perth-Stirling railway to export their bottled water. Alexander Buchan (1829 - 1907), the 'Father of modern meteorology' taught in the local school during the 1860s. The luxurious Gleneagles Hotel is situated 2 miles (3 km) to the northeast.

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