falkirk To Glasgow

Coming to the Clyde

Route length: 25 miles

A church or sacred site

Destination hub

The Roman Catholic Church of St Francis Xavier, Falkirk

This fine modernist church was built in 1958-61 to designs by Reginald Fairlie and Partners.


This site is featured in Scotland’s Churches Trust guide book Fife & The Forth Valley, reference number 103.

You can see more details on the SCT website.

The High Kirk of Glasgow (St Mungo’s Cathedral)

Cadder Parish Church, Bishopbriggs

The Scottish Episcopal Church of St James the Less, Bishopbriggs

St Mary’s Parish Church, Kirkintilloch

The Auld Kirk, Kirkintilloch

St Patrick's Roman Catholic Church, Kilsyth

Kilsyth Anderson Parish Church

Kilsyth Burns and Old Parish Church

St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church, Bonnybridge

By Road

Returning to your car, leave Falkirk on the same route until you reach the Forth and Clyde canal. Branch left before you cross the canal on to the B816. Follow signs for the Falkirk Wheel if you would like to see this or to walk to Roughcastle on the Antonine Wall.

Now continue on the B816 to Bonnybridge where you join the A803 to go  through Kilsyth, Kirkintilloch and Bishopriggs. In Glasgow go straight ahead under the M8 at junction 15. The cathedral will be on your left.

 

 

By Cycle

From Falkirk make your way to the Forth and Clyde canal. This takes you past the Falkirk Wheel and on through Bonnybridge, Auchinstarry and Kirkintilloch until you reach the junction with the Glasgow branch of the canal. You have to come down from the canal and cross under the aqueduct by road before turning left to join the Glasgow branch. Turn right when you reach the towpath. Keep going to Port Dundas, and then by minor roads to Glasgow Cathedral.

 

By Foot

Walkers can follow the Forth and Clyde canal, with the option of exploring Rough Castle, on the Antonine Wall, on the way. (http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fife-stirling/antonine-wall.shtml). If making this a circular walk, return along the canal to the Falkirk Wheel.

Further along the canal explore Croy and Barr Hills, also on the Antonine Wall. (http://www.visitlanarkshire.com/things-to-do/walking/Forth-Clyde-Canal-and-Antonine-Wall/). Again, if making this a circular walk, start at Auchinstarry.

 

By Public Transport

There is a bus service from Culross to Stirling. From Stirling there is a bus service to Cowie, and trains and buses to Falkirk.

Falkirk has two stations, Grahamston and Falkirk High.

There are direct trains and buses from Falkirk to Glasgow. Alternately, there are buses by way of Cumbernauld (if you plan to walk Croy and Barr Hills).

Public transport information can be found on the Traveline website.

There is a close connection between Roman remains, and the struggle in Mungo’s time to restore the inheritance of early British Christianity. Modan the saint of Falkirk is another figure in this movement, whose storytellers, including Mungo, turned the Celtic hero Arthur into a Christian warrior, champion of Romano- Christian Britain when the Romans had gone. Walkers and cyclists can go up to the Antonine Wall midway fort at Barhill above Twechar to catch something of the frontier atmosphere

By Bonnybridge, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch, Mungo entered the region of St Ninian’s earlier influence. In a burial ground beside the Molendinar dedicated to Ninian, Mungo laid Fergus to rest, and decided to start a community in this ‘dear green place’. The medieval glories of Glasgow Cathedral lay far ahead. What is now the Necropolis hill was a fortified citadel, and legend has Merlin, prophet of the old beliefs, hurling insults at the nascent Christian settlement below. Later accounts portray Mungo as a John the Baptist figure, dressed in goatskins with a fisherman’s cowl and striding out with a rough staff rather than an ornamental crozier. He was ‘the warrior of God’ battling through tough times.

Nonetheless Mungo’s founding inspiration is maintained through every phase of this beautiful Cathedral’s life. The Blackadder Aisle, which depicts the transporting of Fergus, may be built over the original burial ground. St Enoch or Thenew’s Well is in the lowest level of the building close to where the Molendinar once ran. And though the shrine behind the high altar, which housed the Saint’s relics, is long gone, the Chapel of St Mungo in the crypt is his place of burial. They are all places fit for pilgrimage. Glasgow’s coat of arms with its bird, bell, tree and fish, is based on stories from Mungo’s life, and the city’s motto acknowledges its founding purpose.

This the bird that never flew
The bell that never rang
The fish that never swam
The tree that never grew.
In the mystery of faith
The grace of divine love,
May we grow, fly, ring,
And swim as the salmon
Leaps from the ocean
Home to source the river
Of renewing life.

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