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Living in Dunblane: The Local Area Guide

Although it feels more like a village at times with its traditional town square and well-preserved stone high street, Dunblane actually qualifies as a city due to its enchanting medieval Cathedral. The city's name comes from the combination of 'dun', or fortified hill, and 'Blane', the 7th century missionary who helped found the original settlement. Dunblane is divided in two by the Allan Water, which provides no shortage of picturesque views from the attractive historic centre.

Local sights of note include the famous Dunblane Cathedral, as well as the Leighton Library, which is the oldest private library in Scotland, originally constructed in 1687. Yet there's more to Dunblane than its historic architecture, including modern shops, a supermarket, and a highly regarded golf course. The city is tucked into the rolling hills of Perthshire, which lend themselves naturally to outdoor activities from horseback riding to lawn bowling.


Though the settlement of Dunblane is thought to date back to the 7th century, it's experienced a great deal of recent growth due to popularity among young professional city commuters who wish to live in a more peaceful setting. The population has trebled in the past 30 years, to meet the needs of these new residents, and there's a range of modern homes which have been built on both sides of the river. According to the 2011 Census, the population now stands at 8,811.

Yet despite the recent growth, the traditional and historic architecture of Dunblane is still quite apparent. Walking through the city centre you're as bound to spot medieval, Victorian, and Edwardian architecture as you are to see perfectly preserved weaver's homes from generations past.


Both the primary and secondary schools within Dunblane have received good marks from Education Scotland. Both Newton Primary and Dunblane Primary were marked as 'good' while St Mary's Episcopal Primary earned a 'very good' ranking. Dunblane High School serves all secondary school students in town. In the Scotsman's 2013 school league tables, the school came in fifth amongst all schools in Scotland, and it also received a 'very good' ranking from Education Scotland.

The high quality of educational opportunities in town is no doubt one of the premier draws for young families in the area. School leavers often choose to stay within the area to attend the nearby University of Stirling, a highly ranked school in nearby Stirling. And young children are not forgotten in Dunblane, with a bevy of top quality nurseries to select from. These include independents like Arnhall Day Nursery and Wee Acorns, along with the options that you'll find within local primary schools.


Dunblane is well-positioned for bus, rail, and motorway travel. It sits at the end of the M9, right before the dual carriageway of the A9 begins. The city of Stirling is only a few minutes away by car, and there are also three trains per hour connecting Dunblane and Stirling. Glasgow is only 40 minutes away by rail, and there are also frequent rail services to both Edinburgh and Perth which depart every 30 minutes.

With a central position, Dunblane benefits from being equally well served by both Glasgow and Edinburgh International Airports. This centrality also makes it a popular destination for business conferences, along with its walkable city centre and attractive countryside setting.

Amenities & Shopping

Specialty boutiques and high street brand names line the streets of Dunblane's traditional historic centre, along with charity shops and charming cafes. You can pick up work from local artisans such as Graham Stewart Gold and Silversmith, visit the Tesco Metro for your main shopping needs, or enjoy the river views from the Café Continental. The Dunblane Hotel is another popular local destination for shoppers in need of a rest, with its oak beams and lengthy list of craft beers. Further shopping opportunities are a short drive or train ride away in the larger city of Stirling. This is where you'll find the Thistles Shopping Centre, home to high street brands like Zara and Boots.

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.

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