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Mercat Cross and City Chambers by Tom Gomez

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Mercat Cross and City Chambers by 

Historic Scotland Category A and B Listed Buildings

The Market Cross (Mercat in the Scots language) on the High Street in Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland.

In the days before newspapers and television, this was Dunfermline’s main meeting place. Official proclamations were made here atop the stone platform.

The first Mercat Cross dates from 1396 while this present cross dates (in part) from 1626 when it was re-erected after the Great Fire of Dunfermline in 1624 and consists of a stepped octagonal base with a cylindrical column, finished with a Unicorn atop a square carved stone with the Royal and Burgh Coats of Arms.

It now resides approximately in its original position at the junction with Crosswynd having been moved several times to accommodate road changes etc.

In 1752 it was built into the wall of an adjacent building, in 1868 it was re-erected in a corner near to the Guildhall and moved closer still in 1924, in 1985 it was temporarily moved to Maygate and in 1992 replaced to its original and current position.

The Mercat Cross is an Historic Scotland, Category B listed structure. HB Number 26002.

Behind the Cross, at the bottom of the High Street, is the clock tower of the City Chambers. This building was historically designed to be the centre of local government in Dunfermline. In more recent times most of these functions have been devolved to other locations, but the impressive edifice still houses the Council Chambers, the Burgh Court and Dunfermline’s Registrar Office.

The building, constructed in the period 1875-79, was created by James C Walker who also designed the first Carnegie Library. It employs a harmonious composite of French, Gothic and Scots baronial architectural styles and features a prominent four-face clock tower. It was constructed on the site of an older Town House of 1771 which was in its turn built to replace the 17th century Town House, demolished as part of 18th century improvements to make way for Bridge Street.

There are many features of historic and architectural significance in the building. The structure includes heraldic stones recovered from the demolished 1771 Town House. These are plausibly believed to have originated from the now derelict Royal Palace of Dunfermline a few hundred yards to the south. The finely designed interior of the City Chambers incorporates many notable features, in particular the oak hammer beam roof which provides the ceiling for the Council Chamber itself. The historic police cells, although no longer in use, have also been preserved.

Furnishings include a number of notable artworks including busts of several Scottish sovereigns, a statue of Robert Burns, Sir Joseph Noel Paton’s painting, Spirit of Religion, and an early twentieth century portrait of King Malcolm and Queen Margaret.

Dunfermline City Chambers is an Historic Scotland, Category A Listed Building. HB Number 25973).

Camera: Canon EOS 60D
Lens: Canon EF-S 17-85mm IS USM


Single RAW image Tonemapped in Photomatix Pro 4.1.4.

Featured in : Artists Universe : 30 Mar 12
Featured in : THE GROUP : 26 May 12

Related shots can be found at: Dunfermline, Fife, Lowland Scotland, and HDR.

All images shown in this redbubble portfolio are owned by the artist, Tom Gomez and are protected under UK and International copyright laws. Any reproduction, modification, publication, transmission, transfer, or exploitation of any part of the content, for personal or commercial use, whether in whole or in part, without written permission from the artist is STRICTLY PROHIBITED. All rights reserved. My images are NOT part of the public domain.

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  • LisaBeth
    LisaBethover 2 years ago

    love the atmosphere…superb compo!!!

  • Thank you so much LisaBeth …

    – Tom Gomez

  • Chris Clark
    Chris Clarkover 2 years ago

    stunning work as usual Tom

  • Cheers m8, always appreciated …

    – Tom Gomez

  • photogaryphy
    photogaryphyover 2 years ago

    Great shot Tom, lovely light too.

  • Cheers Gary mate …

    – Tom Gomez

  • Mary Sedici
    Mary Sediciover 2 years ago

    MARCH 30th, 2012
    See your work in the Permanents Featured Gallery
    ►Please participate in the ongoing Challenges

  • Thank you Mary, I am honoured …

    – Tom Gomez

  • Robin Brown
    Robin Brownover 2 years ago

    Top class artwork Tom the council should give you the freedom of the Town :o)

  • Thank you my friend, pleased you like it …

    – Tom Gomez

  • Audrey Clarke
    Audrey Clarkeover 2 years ago

  • Kittycat10
    Kittycat10over 2 years ago


  • Thank you so much, I am honoured …

    – Tom Gomez

  • dgscotland
    dgscotlandover 2 years ago

    I know it well…here Tom, have a banner :-)

  • Very much appreciated DG …

    – Tom Gomez

  • kalaryder
    kalaryderover 2 years ago

    How lovely Tom, like the sunlight on the RHS

  • Thank you kindly Mik …

    – Tom Gomez

  • Trish Meyer
    Trish Meyerover 2 years ago

    Congratulations on your feature Tom !
    It looks quite different from this angle … great shot !

  • Thank you dear Trish, Dunfermline is a very old town, once the capital of Scotland where Malcolm Canmore had his castle …

    – Tom Gomez

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