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Kirkcaldy Dock and Harbour

A Category B Listed Building in Kirkcaldy, Fife

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Latitude: 56.1148 / 56°6'53"N

Longitude: -3.1506 / 3°9'2"W

OS Eastings: 328549

OS Northings: 691932

OS Grid: NT285919

Mapcode National: GBR 2B.LL59

Mapcode Global: WH6RV.KKXP

Entry Name: Kirkcaldy Dock and Harbour

Listing Date: 27 February 1997

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 390761

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB44067

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Kirkcaldy

County: Fife

Town: Kirkcaldy

Electoral Ward: Kirkcaldy East

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Predominantly 19th and 20th centuries, encasing earlier structures. INNER DOCK: irregular-plan basin; concrete repairs to basin walls; evidence of earlier rubble construction to innermost quay wall; cast-iron pawls set in quayside; various surfaces to quayside including tarmac, concrete and granite sets; remnants of railway track to E quayside. LOCK GATES AND SWING BRIDGE: timber and steel lock gates between dock and outer harbour. Steel and timber swing bridge with railway tracks remaining. Decorative cast-iron lamp standards. E PIER: at least 3 builds. N section 2-stage comprising walkway and parapet; coursed rubble sandstone on natural bedrock; steps up to walkway. Middle section (circa 1845): 2-stage comprising walkway and parapet; droved ashlar sandstone (lifting points exposed); round-arched semicircular recesses. S section (1909): parapet and quay; pre-cast concrete; cast-iron pawls. OUTER BASIN AND W PIER: concrete shelf to basin with slipway to W; 2 timber piers adjoining mouth to inner dock. Parapet and quay to W pier; cast-iron pawls; single storey brick warehouse.

Statement of Interest

The harbour has been on this site since at least the 17th century, and was known by 1676 as the old and new harbours. Some early structure appears to have been incorporated into the N part of the current inner dock, possibly 1756 extension, and in 1797 authorisation was granted to deepen the new basin. A railway connection was brought to the harbour in 1849, and the New Statistical Accoung mentions major planned improvements to harbour extension of E pier, drawn up by civil engineer James Leslie of Dundee. This almost certainly relates to the middle section of the existing pier, which was carried out in fine ashlar work. Harbour duties formed an important source of income to the town, and much money was expended by the town council to ensure that the harbour continued to meet the requirements of traders. Further extension of the E pier and enlargement of the outer basin took place in 1909, at the height of the linoleum trade. Trade with the Continent prior to the Union included coal, salt and salted fish; Kirkcaldy remained a busy harbour at the start of this century with exports including linoleum, paper, malt, grain and textiles. During the First World War it was taken over by the American Navy, and finally closed in 1929.

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