The Royal Burgh of Annan is an attractive, friendly town in the beautiful Dumfries & Galloway region, where our Annan Estate Agent office is based. It is the principle town of the pleasant countryside of Annandale, with a population of roughly 10,000 people. With many years of experience in Annan property sales, we'd like to share a little of what brings people to this beautiful part of the world.
Annan is a well built town, with a number of fine buildings and handsome dwellings. Annan properties are built predominantly from local red sandstone, making for a well-planned and pretty town. With a bustling high street serving townspeople and the wider community, Annan has a number of interesting shops, restaurants and welcoming pubs. Of course it is also home to lj residential, specialists in Annan property sales. But believe it or not, whilst we are popular - more visitors come to the town for the popular Annan museum, listed buildings and the attractive River Annan. With its historic centre around High Street and Bank Street, Annan is a popular stop-off point for visitors to Dumfries & Galloway, who also enjoy the Georgian period Parish Church and the mounds of Robert de Brus' 12th century motte and bailey.
There are numerous significant buildings in Annan, including Bridge House - considered one of the finest Georgian town houses in Scotland. Plans are afoot to convert the building into a museum and visitor centre, telling the story of its former use as a school where Robert Carlyle studied and taught. Another attractive area of Annan is the restored harbour quay, around which impressive town houses that used to belong to rich merchants stand. Interestingly, in between 1780 and 1848, the harbour was used by ships taking emigrants to the new worlds of the United States and Canada.
The fords across the east of the Solway firth have been a route for invading armies for over two thousand years, with the Romans using the area as a place to camp before pushing north in search of new bounties. The Roman Empire wasn't confined to areas south of Hadrian's Wall, building fortifications in Annandale to supply their northward campaigns. Later, in the 13th and 14th centuries the area became famous for its association with the Bruce family, who were Lords of Annandale. The region suffered the consequences of the war between England and Scotland - in which the Bruce's were key figures.
When hostilities ceased between the two countries the area was still a hotbed of violence, suffering at the hands of the Border Reivers. These well-armed horsemen from both sides of the border would raid the area, seizing cattle from properties in Annan and beyond. Today, the countryside of Dumfries and Galloway still features many fortified farms and towers, built to try and suppress these terrifying raids. Don't worry though, it's quite peaceful now!
Annan enjoyed a flourishing shipbuilding industry in later centuries, occupying its position on the Solway coast. And today, it forms the centre of a lively and prosperous local community supporting forestry, farming and tourism. The town still looks back to its interesting past, celebrating the award of its royal charter from King James V in 1538 each July. This lively event includes processions, sports, field displays and massed ranks of Scottish pipers.
People who come to us to source Annan properties enjoy the accessibility of the town for walkers, who can choose from a number of pleasant trails in and around the town. Of these, the most impressive is the Shore Walk, which takes in the landscape of the Solway Firth - and the site of the fords across it that used to be routes for cattle drovers until 1863. The route also takes in the site of the Annan viaduct, which crossed the Solway. Amazingly this collapsed in 1881 when ice sheets flowing downriver collided with the timber structure. While the climate here isn't tropical, none of our properties in Annan are at immediate risk of being struck by icebergs! Travelling on the Shore Walk also takes in the Annan Merse, an area of specific scientific interest due to the unique habitats this tidal grassland and salt flats provide.
The town is the home of the prestigious Annan Academy, a secondary school founded in 1802. Its most famous pupil (and later a teacher) was Thomas Carlyle, the eminent Scottish essayist, satirist and politician. The excellent reputation of the school makes properties in Annan popular for those with families.