Historic Trinity Church at heart of Battle of Falkirk commemorations

editorial image

Trinity Church is extending an open invitation for people to tour the iconic building during this year’s 1298 Battle of Falkirk commemoration day which takes place on Saturday.

The church will be at the centre of things, much as it must have been at the time of William Wallace – when it had already been a place of worship for perhaps eight hundred years.

The annual memorial has been a July fixture for many years, popular with history fans across the Falkirk district.

This year’s expanded array of activities will build on the success of previous years with attractions including a Britannia XIV medieval re-enactment, dancing from Celtic dance tribe Treubh Dannsa, weapon displays, an exhibition about Wallace and Bruce and a chance to see a reconstruction of King Robert’s throne.

There will also be high-octane Scottish entertainment in the form of percussion and Highland bagpipes performed by popular Scottish tribal music group Clann an Drumma.

In addition there will be a medieval market on the High Street from noon, children’s crafts activities at the Howgate, and Trinity’s cafe will be open from 11am.

The church is also the destination for the commemorative march from Callendar Park. The gathering will take place at the memorial cairn in the park at 12.15pm and will be led by a procession of fully-accoutred Scottish knights bearing the royal and national colours of Scotland.

Local heritage group the Society of John de Graeme has worked particularly hard to bring an extra dimension to a day which focuses on the town’s role in one of the epic tragedies of the Wars of Independence.

A Scottish army led by Sir William Wallace was massacred just outside Falkirk by the invading forces of Edward Plantagenet, ending one phase of a struggle finally won by King Robert I.

The Battle of Falkirk, which took place on 22 July 1298, was one of the most important engagements of the Scottish Wars of Independence. While the Battle of Falkirk, which took place on 22 July 1298 may not be as well-known today as the later clash at Bannockburn, by medieval standards it was a very large battle, with thousands of men fighting on both sides.

The Society of John de Graeme is named after the “local” knight of the same name, who was Wallace’s right hand man - and whose grave is in the grounds of the church.

He was among the many to die in the disastrous encounter with the forces of England’s Edward I.

Also buried in the same tomb in Trinity’s Churchyard is the Young Glengarry, a Jacobite chieftain killed by an accidental shot after leading his 800 clansmen to victory the previous day in the 1746 Second Battle of Falkirk.

The commemoration events will take place on Saturday, July 20, and run from 11am to 5pm