The images above show Inchcolm Island and
Abbey. You can explore all the Abbey and
climb to the top of the tower for great
views. The stairs in the tower are narrow and
Touring the island, you will see the
remains of military gun placements and
barracks. There is also a long tunnel through
the east side of the island, as seen in the
The island has two sandy beaches, many
scenic picnic areas, and a small island next
to the pier covered in gnomes.
900s - a hogback grave marker stone is
used on the island showing Christianity must
have been present on the island at that time.
This stone is now in the visitor centre.
1070 - King Malcom III (Canmore) marries
the English princess Margaret.
They establish a huge Abbey and Palace at
Dunfermline, northwest of Inchcolm
Margaret then establishes the first ferry
service between Queensferry and North
Queensferry, so people from the south of the
Forth could visit Dunfermline Abbey.
1123 - King Alexander I, son of Malcom III
and Margaret, sheltered on Inchcolm Island
during a storm and vowed to build a Monastery
on the island as it could have saved his
1124 - King Alexander I dies before he can
have a monastery built on the island.
1124 - David I, brother of Alexander I,
founded a priory on Inchcolm Island.
1235 - the status of the priory was raised
to an abbey.
1335 - during the Wars of Independence
with England, the Abbey’s treasures and a
statue of Columba were stolen.
1547 - Inchcolm was held by the English
during wars over religion.
Henry VIII of England had adopted
Protestantism and wanted his son Edward to
marry the infant Mary, Queen of Scots.
Scotland was still Catholic at that time,
with strong connections to Catholic
The English feared Scotland and France
would join together to invade England.
1548 - the French sent 10,000 troops to
the Forth area to help the Scots. Mary Queen
of Scots moved to France that year for her
safety, and later Married a French
1551 - a treaty was signed between
Scotland, England and France to end the
1560 - Scottish Parliament adopts
Protestantism, leading to the end of Catholic
worship in Scotland and the Abbeys.
Inchcolm is one of the best preserved
Abbeys due to it being on an Island. Little
of its stonework was taken for other
buildings, like so many Abbeys on the
1633, the ship Blessing of Burntisland
sank close to Inchcolm Island carrying
Charles I’s treasure, valued at over £1
billion today. The treasure has never been
1914 - 1918 during WWI, Inchcolm Island
was used as a fortress to help defend
Edinburgh. Many huge British warships are
stationed here Image.
1918 - the 20,000 ton aircraft carrier
Campania sank close to Inchcolm Island.
Campania was on aging liner converted to
an aircraft carrier during WWI.
1939 - 1945 - during WWII, the island was
again fortified to help protect
1990s - Historic Scotland takes control of
Inchcolm Abbey, maintaining the building, and
allowing visits throughout the summer.