Stirling Old Bridge
Willy Wallace Hostel is in the heart of Stirling!
Stirling Old Bridge has an important place in Scotland history due to its location over one of the most critical river crossings. Until the early 1800s, the bridge was the main crossing point of the River Forth, being considered as ’gateway to the Highlands’.
The Bridge also witnessed a famous battle, in 1297, when Sir William Wallace and Sir Andrew Moray a Scottish led army to a victory over the forces of Edward I of England. The Bridge was small enough for only two knights to cross at a time. The Scots stood on the soft, flat side of the land north of the river and waited until the 5400 British and Welsh soldiers and hundreds of other knights, crossed the bridge, then the Scottish army attacked them. The Scottish spearmen left the high ground and advanced to the Stirling Bridge, controlling the English side of the bridge.
The result was the retreat of the English troops, with lots of deaths in their troops, ensuring the success of the Scottish strategy.
The Bridge history started between the 1400s and 1500s, replacing older timber bridges. The bridge also took part in the Jacobite Rising of 1745, when an arch was removed to forestall Bonnie Prince Charlie’s forces as they marched south. Since 1832, the bridge is no more accessible by cars – only bike and walkers may cross. Stirling New Bridge was re-designed by Robert Stevenson and opened in 1833.