I recently embarked on a tour of the Coaltown of Wemyss, a Scottish village in Fife. How did I do this, you ask, without even leaving the hollow I call home? Simple, I took advantage of the Street View function on Google Maps, a quick and easy (and cheap) way to cyber-travel. Long ago I crossed the Forth Rail Bridge going north out of Edinburgh and was not that many miles from the Coaltown of Wemyss, but did not then know of it’s existence.
Here is an aerial view of the Coaltown of Wemyss, courtesy of Google Maps. As you can see, it is quite neat and attractive…and not too large. The last estimate I saw put the population at 590.
If you come from Dysart or Kirkcaldy to the west on the A955, this is what greets you upon arrival. Watch your speed, the limit is 20 mph.
If you follow this route, you will see on your left in the center of the village the Primary School. Attendance at this school is approximately 70 students from both the Coaltown of Wemyss and the smaller West Wemyss.
There are several side streets to explore on both the left and right before reaching the eastern end of the village. The A955 continues on to the larger village of East Wemyss and then Buckhaven.
If instead of coming from Kirkcaldy you arrived on the eastern end of the Coaltown of Wemyss, this is what you would see.
Ahead on the right you see the Earl David Hotel. If you plan to stay the night in the Coaltown of Wemyss, this is where you would book your room.
The Earl David Hotel is named for an Earl of Wemyss who happened to have the name David. It has six guest rooms, serves breakfast and has a bar. Or is it a pub?
My understanding is that the Coaltown of Wemyss dates back to at least 1645, so this village has some history. As the name indicates, this place has long been associated with coal mining which was once the area’s main industry. Interesting for a place of this size, I read that there has never been a church in the Coaltown of Wemyss.
Time to return to the hollow. I hope you enjoyed this quick drive through the Coaltown of Wemyss.