Magna Carta celebration cash granted

All that remains above ground of the Abbey
All that remains above ground of the Abbey

The Tongland and Ringford Community Council is pleased to announce it has secured a financial grant of £3000 from the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Committee.

The 800th anniversary of the sealing of the Magna Carta is being celebrated this year throughout in England and across the world, and Tongland has a direct connection – and the only Scottish connection - to this most important document.

Alan of Galloway is named on the Magna Carta which was sealed at Runnymede on 15 June 1215; at that time he was the hereditary Lord of Galloway and Constable of Scotland, and a trusted advisor to King John. Moreover, his connections to the Stewartry of Kirkcudbrightshire are strong; he is recorded as being the founder of Tongland Abbey in 1218 and his daughter Dervorgilla established Sweetheart Abbey in memory of her husband John Balliol.

This grant will be used to fund several different events, including a geophysical survey to establish more precisely the layout of the Abbey and the publication of information leaflets. Also planned is the installation of a permanent information board at the site of the Abbey, the ruins of which were incorporated into the now derelict parish church at Tongland. The remaining funding will be used to pay for educational sessions for local primary school children and the offer of a bursary for post-graduate research.

On Saturday, 20 June, the Deputy Lord Lieutenant, Mr Alexander McCulloch, will unveil the information board in Tongland Churchyard. This will be followed by a lecture on Alan, Lord of Galloway, by Professor Richard Oram of Stirling University, an authority on Galloway’s medieval history and author of ‘The Lords of Galloway’. The lecture will be in Ringford Village Hall starting at 3.45pm., and is free and open to all. Anyone wishing to attend should arrive by 3.30pm to allow for a prompt start.

The Tongland and Ringford Community Council wish to express their gratitude for this award; The Magna Carta Trust’s 800th Anniversary Commemoration Committee is charged by the Magna Carta Trust to co-ordinate activities, raise the profile of the anniversary and deliver a number of key national and international aspirations. For more information, visit