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The local area guide to living in Stirling

Stirling is located in central Scotland and is ‘The Gateway to the Highlands’ being described as ‘the brooch which clasps the Highlands and Lowlands together’. The city itself surrounds an extensive fortress and a historic old town. It became Scotland’s sixth city in 2002 when it received city status thanks to the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebrations. The history of Stirling is very significant to Scotland, as it was the capital of the country during a portion of the 14th century and was for many years the common target of English and Viking invaders. The city’s impressive castle, which still stands, was home to Mary Queen of Scots and the Stuart Kings of Scotland. Stirling is also home to the important Scottish monuments commemorating Bannockburn, where the landmark battle for independence was won by Robert the Bruce, and the National Wallace Monument, a tower that presides the Abbey Craig hilltop, commemorating the infamous Scottish hero William Wallace.

Information about the local residents

Stirling is the smallest city in Scotland, with a population at the last census of just 34,000, though this was an increase of 4% from the 2001 census. 98% of people identify as being of white British ethnicity. The highest proportion of population is in the 16-29 demographic, and Sterling has a higher amount of non-Scottish inhabitants than the national average.

House prices in Stirling are some £23,000 above the national average, despite a fall in average house prices in the area by 7.6% in 2012. Sterling has a significant retail sector, and this serves as the backbone for the economy.

Nearby schools

The Stirling area has 7 secondary and 40 primary schools, and was the third best performing council authority area in Scotland due to 21% of pupils completing secondary school with five or more Scottish Highers. Dunblane High School, located in the local area, is the fourth best performing school in Scotland, which achieved an impressive 39%.

Higher education is catered for by the University of Stirling, which was established in 1967 and was at the time Scotland’s newest university since the University of Edinburgh was founded in 1582. Stirling University has the popular author Iain Banks amongst its alumni and has consistently been ranked amongst the top 50 universities in Britain, and has ranked top in the entire UK for their Social Work course.

Getting around

Stirling is handily located in the middle of Scotland, making the rest of the country easy to reach. Major nearby roads are the M9, which is 50 miles away and links Stirling to Edinburgh, and the M80, which is 30 miles away and provides an easy link to Glasgow.

Stirling has a train station, which has two services every hour to Edinburgh, as well as regular services to Glasgow. There are also connections to Inverness, Dundee and Aberdeen. A good bus service connects Stirling to the surrounding areas, as well as Edinburgh and Glasgow and the rest of the country. For national and international travel by air, there are plenty of airports to choose from: Glasgow, Edinburgh and Prestwick are all within easy reach by road or rail.

Local shops

Stirling has plenty to keep everyone entertained, from a great selection of shops to the city’s notoriously chilling ghost walks! The main shopping area is situated on Port Street and Murray place, and here you’ll find a mix of independent shops and high street favourites. To gain a full retail experience featuring many popular brands, the Thistles Shopping center is the perfect place to go. For a more picturesque experience, visit the city’s old town, which hosts a great selection of souvenir shops, pubs, cafes and restaurants.

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.