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Schools in Scotland (Stirling area)

(90 Posts)
Jo121Cambridge Sat 01-Feb-14 19:00:39

Hi all

We are hoping to move to Scotland this year, my husband will be transferring to Stirling. Ideally we would like to live in a village, but as we have 2 young schools - this is our priority!

So if any Scottish mums can help out in recommending nice areas with good schools that would be great. I have a 5 year old and a 3 year old (due to start school next year).

I have no knowledge at all of Scotland (i'm in England) and would really appreciate any help at all!

Thanks, Jo

midwifeandmum Thu 20-Feb-14 14:12:03


I attended denny high late 90s till early 00s

Jo121Cambridge Thu 20-Feb-14 14:13:08

Thank you - so are Denny and Bonnybridge both small towns or villages? Are they both part of Falkirk council?

babyboomersrock Thu 20-Feb-14 14:15:25

Not sure you'd like Kincardine either, OP.

If you're going to look around Dunfermline, try West Fife villages - Culross, Limekilns, Saline etc - all are small friendly communities with local shop/PO etc. Local primary schools in those places seem good and secondary education in Dunfermline (Queen Anne?) good too.

StoorieHoose Thu 20-Feb-14 14:16:01

och your just a young thing Midwife!

Yes Denny and Bonnybridge are small towns and within the Falkirk Council area.

babyboomersrock Thu 20-Feb-14 14:22:03

Has anyone mentioned Dollar? Very pretty small town, 20 mins from Stirling and less than an hour from Edinburgh. Lovely countryside around.

BankWadger Thu 20-Feb-14 14:25:48

If you want to be close to Stirling you could look at Cambusbarron. It's as nice little village only separated from Stirling by the motorway. It has a good school and playgroup. Terrible bus links though. I nice mix of

BankWadger Thu 20-Feb-14 14:28:58

A nice mix of locals and not locals that should say.

Jo121Cambridge Thu 20-Feb-14 14:30:20

So for Day 2 - Edinburgh: I haven't done as much research for this yet so this will be a bit of a "wing it" day lol.

Anyone have any knowledge of nice surrounding suburbs? Don't really want to be right in the city as I like things a bit quieter!

midwifeandmum Thu 20-Feb-14 14:50:31

Yes Bonnybridge is part of Falkirk Council. So is Denny. I went to bonnybridge primary and that was a terrific school.

My body doesnt feel young stooiehoose lol

AMumInScotland Thu 20-Feb-14 15:04:14

If you find Linlithgow prices steep for what you want, then I suspect you'll find the 'nice' Edinburgh suburbs also out of your prive range.

McKTastic Thu 20-Feb-14 15:28:50

Depends on how 'villagey' you want/ style of house. Callander, Doune & Auchterarder are all within 1/2hr commute of Stirling but along more rural roads (or up the A9 to Auchterarder) All have new build style homes that would give you 4 beds & garden for your money (traditional builds tend to be pricier). Out of these three I'd plump for Auchterarder. Good school (incl secondary), DH can commute to Stirling, feels rural but enough amenities/going on for families & you could get yourself a gym membership at Gleneagles wink Good Luck.

Jo121Cambridge Thu 20-Feb-14 15:47:12

right the list just got longer :-) i'll check it out

Yes when I say Edinburgh, I mean about 40 mins outside really (just a commutable distance I guess)

WeeClype Thu 20-Feb-14 19:05:56

I stay in Stirling but I love Callender, very busy in the summer tho.

TeacakeEater Thu 20-Feb-14 22:34:31

Larbert and Polmont have lots of houses, a train station apiece, but small to non-existent high streets as they are near to Falkirk. Both in Falkirk District for schools. I think Polmont feeds into Braes High School.

Yes AMumInScotland I know friends who moved from Edinburgh to Linlithgow for cheaper housing. Outside Linlithgow there is the village of Torphichen.

Maybe take a look at Auchterarder, a teacher I knew was v happy with the High School for her kids.

Preferthedogtothekids Fri 21-Feb-14 20:21:44

I've been in Dunfermline for 11 years and love it here. My dc have done very well at their primary and secondary schools (their secondary is very highly rated by the Inspectors). There are lots of small villages on the outskirts, like Cairneyhill and Crossford, which provide primary schools and offer bus transport into the High School.

Jo121Cambridge Sat 22-Feb-14 21:47:03

Thanks for the info, we aren't going to look near Edinburgh tomorrow. Instead we are going to look more around the Dunfermline and villages/fife area.

Today we travelled 150/160 miles and made a short list of places we like which are bridge of Allan, dunblane, dollar, and auchterarder. So already 4 places we are very keen on!

Tomorrow we will look around Dunfermline then re visit the places we liked today.

I need to find out things like, where I can take the kids for swimming lessons, where I take the kids for fun etc (indoor play areas if any) etc.

All things plus school info will help us narrow places down further.

I can't thank everyone enough for all the suggestions!

Preferthedogtothekids Sat 22-Feb-14 23:30:35

Dunfermline is well-served for swimming lessons, with the Carnegie centre and several High schools in the area which have Community use (out-of-hours) activities. McLean, Commercial, St Margarets and Townhill Primary schools all seem to be well-run. There is a gorgeous park in the centre of Dunfermline as well as a couple of dance schools and martial arts facilities.

It's a nice town and I have enjoyed living here :-)

babyboomersrock Sun 23-Feb-14 10:08:53

If you're interested in Dollar, I see that Dollar Academy (private school) has a swimming pool which is open to the public.

Good luck - it's windy and wild up here today (Dunfermline/Dollar area)!

Jo121Cambridge Sun 23-Feb-14 12:56:24

Oh my! What a weekend I picked hey, it's so windy. Thanks that's good to know re dollar. Back at auchterarder now having lunch.

Been to Dunfermline. I think I like it to "shop" but bit too busy to live maybe.

Favs are still dollar, auchterarder, dunblane and bridge of Allan.

McKTastic Sun 23-Feb-14 12:58:19

Def wet,wild & windy up here today! Hope you're having a good look round Dunfermline area today - different to the four you looked at yest.

Wrote you a long post last night then it vanished! Of your four from yest -All have pretty well thought of Primary Schools. Bridge of Allan Primary (incl nursery), Dunblane has Newton, Dunblane Primary & St.Mary's (all with nursery), Dollar has Strathdevon Primary ( incl nursery) & Auchterarder has The Community School of Auchterarder (from nursery too). You can look up all of their latest inspection reports on the HMIE website. If you lived in Dollar the nearest secondary is Alva Academy (about 15 mins drive), Dunblane has it's own High School, The Community School in Auchterarder includes secondary provision & Bridge of Allan feeds into Wallace High School which is on the outskirts of Stirling & a short walk.

Many of those living in Dunblane, Dollar & BofA send their kids to Dollar Academy, there is also the private option of Beconhurst in BofA & Morrison's Academy (in Crieff) if you lived in Auchterarder. All three of these private schools have nursery /primary & secondary provision & all three would be commutable from any of the four places you mentioned depending on how long you we're prepared to travel. All of the schools (state & private) mentioned have their own websites too.

Posting before I lose it again then will think about activities!

McKTastic Sun 23-Feb-14 13:21:59

Just seen your update. It's a horrible day up here!

All of the four places are reasonably similar in respect of sports activities/scouts/brownies/things on for preschoolers etc I regularly do things in all of them so it depends how much on your doorstep you want stuff/how prepared you are to travel to places within half an hour.

Auchterarder - am pretty sure private swimming lessons run at Police respite home, lessons a short drive away in Crieff, a bit further north in Perth (but a fab pool) or down to Stirling for The Peak or pool at the University.

Bridge of Allan/ Dunblane you'd probably opt for lessons at The Peak/University (but can easily head to Perth if you've more time for a fun swim or The Time Capsule in Monklands....).

Dollar Academy does allow limited public access to its pool but you could also do ones mentioned above or The Leisure Bowl in Alloa.

All four are easy enough commutes to Stirling & also lots of activities there for kids. BofA/Dunblane obviously closer. All except Dollar have train links but Auchterarder at Gleneagles station so bit more remote (despite it being revamped for Ryder Cup!) I've known all except BofA challenging to get to in really bad snow but that rarely happens!

Dunblane Centre has lots of activities for Pre Schoolers/kids, Stirling University has lovely grounds & activities on at The MacRobert Arts Centre. Some wee indoor play places locally but lots of friends head to Cumbernauld - Broadwood or Adventure Planet. If you're happy driving for days out too Edinburgh/ Glasgow/Perth all pretty accessible (as are things to do in Falkirk/Linlithgow/even further afield like St Andrews!). If you want to be right in the Central Belt focus on BofA or Dunblane. Dollar & Auchterarder are both lovely places to live but I think you'd travel more often to do stuff (& your kids def would when they get to the teenage years!).

Apologies for typos/lack of punctuation/spelling. Have just rambled but if there's anything more you'd like to find out about pm me & I'll try & help.

Good Luck!

McKTastic Sun 23-Feb-14 13:29:55

Look up Sheppardswimschool for info on good private lessons in the area (In addition to the others as Stirling Uni/The Peak/1:1 tuition at the Leisure Bowl in Alloa etc are all pretty good too!)

Must get off mumsnet now!!!

oohdaddypig Sun 23-Feb-14 13:44:24

In terms of surrounding villages to Dunfermline, check our crossford just to the west. Nice wee primary, park etc and only a bus ride to Dunfermline.

If I was in your position though it would be bridge of Allan for me. Lovely lovely place. Dollar is great too but that bit further away from bigger amenities.

The weather is unusually awful today smile

Jo121Cambridge Sun 23-Feb-14 21:20:27

Wow amazing information there so thank you! We are pretty tired, travelled over 200 miles in 2 days and then a 8 hour drive home tomoz!

Out fav location is bridge of allan I think, really liked dollar too but like u say it's a bit further out.

I think we are going to sleep on it now but I may pm you at some stage, thanks for that!

My husband is very keen but I'm scared of moving the kids so far and feeling isolated. Also wonder if in 10 years we would potentially move closer to Edinburgh to give the kids best employment opportunities.


Jo121Cambridge Thu 27-Feb-14 13:31:16

Hi ladies

Just wondering if any of you have any opinions on the west side of Stirling? So Balfron, Killearn and Drymen?

They look a bit more rural and further for hubby to commute but wondering if that means I would get more house for my money?!

Trying to give myself another option from my favs so far (Bridge of Allen/Dollar/Auchterarder)

thanks :-)

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