NT 002-773 West Lothian Scotland
Linlithgow Palace was originally a 12th century royal stone manor house, founded by King David I. Standing on a low promontory overlooking a small inland loch, the naturally defensible site was possibly occupied by a Roman camp. In 1301-2 King Edward I wintered here during his Scottish campaigns and encased the royal residence with a formidable wooden peel. The remains of round towers against the eastern façade of the palace, may be a barbican built by his architect James of St George. In 1424 the house was badly damaged by fire and King James I founded the square quadrangular palace when adding the eastern entrance façade. Completed over the next two centuries, all of the Stewart kings lived at the palace and King James V in 1512 and Mary, Queen of Scots in 1542, were born here. In 1534-6, King James V added the southern entrance façade and a ceremonial route into the palace, which passed through an outer ornamented gateway, over the paved outer court and into a small inner gateway. Now a pleasure dome on the European model, in 1607 the north wing collapsed and was rebuilt 1618-24 by William Wallace, in the fashionable Danish Renaissance style. Fortified by the troops of Oliver Cromwell in 1650, the palace was then occupied until the Restoration in 1660. Occupied by the troops of the Duke of Cumberland in 1746, the palace was abandoned after being consumed by fire but its elaborately carved hexagonal fountain of 1538, still stands within the rectangular courtyard. Nearby is West Port House and 3 miles north-east is Carriden House.
Linlithgow Palace is located in the town centre beside Linlithgow Loch, off Kirkgate. 17 miles west of Edinburgh, on the A8-M9.
The site is owned by Historic Scotland and is open daily, April to September 9:30-5:30pm, October to March 9:30-4:30pm.
There is a car park.