Looking Up From the Harbour at Crail

Christine Smith

Grovedale, Australia

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FEATURED in A Place To Call Home 17-01-2013
FEATURED in Canon DSLR 21-01-2013

Camera: Canon EOS 400D, Lens: @ 17mm, ISO:200, Aperture: f10, Shutter:1/250

Situated in the East Neuk (corner) of Fife, Crail is a charming historical port whose harbour is one of the most photographed places in Scotland. For hundreds of years, ships returned to Crail from Scandinavia and northern Europe with hulls full of cargo which were unloaded at the picturesque Crail Harbour. The people aboard left their mark in Crail’s European-styled architecture which features crow-stepped gables, pantiled roofs and outer stairs. In the 12th century, Crail became the first village in the East Neuk of Fife to become a Royal Burgh. This status was essential for commerce but a century later in 1310, Robert the Bruce would seal the medieval importance of the village by granting Crail the privilege of holding a Sunday market. Crail Marketplace grew to become the largest fishing market in Europe. The Mercat Cross still stands here although now it rests on a 17th century shaft. Nearby, you’ll see Crail Tolbooth (1598) which served as the old town gaol and council offices. It sports an unusual weathervane, a copper Crail Capon (smoked haddock) for which Crail was once famous. Conveniently located just next door is the Crail Heritage Centre which also houses the Crail Tourist Information Centre, which is the building shown in this image. John Knox, the preacher, was less than impressed with Crail’s Sunday Market. After listening to a most passionate sermon, residents of Crail were so incensed by his message that they destroyed the beautiful altars and holy images within Crail Church. For many years after the Reformation of 1560, the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland tried without success to force a change of Crail’s market to a weekday.

Artwork Comments

  • Katey1
  • Christine Smith
  • Tom Gomez
  • Christine Smith
  • John Holding
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  • Lori Peters
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  • Audrey Clarke
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  • BigD
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  • Arfan Habib
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  • Michael Carter
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