Welcome to New Cumnock, Ayrshire, Scotland.
This web-site is devoted to the history of the parish of New Cumnock which is situated in the Southern Uplands of Scotland.
The new church, now the Auld Kirk was built on the site of Cumnock Castle, the ancient seat of the Barons of Cumnock, held by the Earls of Dunbar from the late 13th century. Cumnock Castle overlooked the confluence of the River Nith and the Afton Water, a meeting of waters that gave rise to the Gaelic place-name comunn ach 'place of the confluence'. The town of New Cumnock grew up around the new church at the heart of the large upland parish of New Cumnock.
Much of the history of the parish is found in the surrounding hills. In the Bronze Age Burial Cairns or on the Roman roads or in the household of William Wallace, the great Scottish patriot at Castle William. The hills are also home to the legend of Robert the Bruce being hunted here, whilst Edward II of England held court at Cumnock Castle. Nearly 400 years later and the same hills would provide refuge for the Covenanters in their battle for spiritual freedom. One of their number Patrick Gemmil was a signatory of the Sanquhar Declaration, an act which ensured his murder and martyrdom.
The hills, valleys and the fields were also the source of liveliehood for many parishioners and the late 16th century maps ably show the spread of the ferme-tounes, many of which survive in name to this day.
In the 20th century coal became king and New Cumnock became
It was not all gloom and in 1993 the people of New Cumnock's search for the holy grail was realised asGlenafton Athletic Football Club brought home the Scottish Junior Cup the most coveted trophy in Scottish if not World football !
History of the parish of New Cumnock, Ayrshire, Scotland
© Robert Guthrie
Beginnings of Scotland
Wars of Independence