PLEASE NOTE THE GARDEN IS CURRENTLY CLOSED DUE TO BUILDING RENOVATION

ABOUT THE GARDEN

The Abbot House walled garden is loved by locals and visitors alike and has stunning views across the graveyard to Dunfermline Abbey. The existing garden was created by The Beechgrove Garden in 1995, recreating a formal 17th century garden. The original garden would have been much simpler in its design. Part of the garden incorporates a herb garden dedicated to Lady Anne Halkett, who resided in Abbot House in the late 1600s. She was a practising herbal apothecary and midwife and had people flocking from near and far to cure their ailments. The garden is still planted with herbs that were used in the 17th Century including Quince, Lavender, Sage and Rosemary.

Abbot House Fountain

The fountain built into the graveyard wall is called THE SPIRIT OF ETERNITY. It is based on a design drawn by the Scottish artist, John Duncan, for Sir Patrick Geddes, the noted botanist and town planner. This was included in the Geddes Plan for Pittencrieff Park and the adjacent area in 1903, but was never implemented. The serpent with its tail in its mouth is the symbol of Eternity. The Angel was made by leading Scottish sculptor Tim Pomeroy, who attended Gray’s School of Art from 1976-81.

Abbot House Gates

The Henryson Gates are a tribute to Dunfermline’s most famous poet and scholar Robert Henryson (mid-late 1400’s) and illustrates the animals that feature in his fables. Henryson is believed to have been a school master in Dunfermline, following studies in Glasgow and Paris. He is also thought to have had close connections with Dunfermline Abbey and the Royal Palace. A collection of his work is held in the Dunfermline Carnegie Library and Galleries.

Abbot House Sundial

The Sundial was made by Lesley Alan Reid in memory of the late James Marshall and is made from slabs of Caithness stone decorated with Pictish symbols. James Marshall, a local lawyer and a past Chairman of the Carnegie Dunfermline Trust, was a vigorous supporter of heritage projects, particularly Abbot House. He was a keen hill-walker and many of the stones that he had collected in the course of his walks have been placed under the sundial. The motto round the rim reads ” Tak Tent o’ Time Be Tint ” meaning “Use time carefully”.