Today's visitor finds an intriguing site comprising four very different elements. The only standing building is the bell tower, probably built in the late 1200s, and heavily restored in the 1860s. The rest of the abbey's main complex, including the abbey church and cloister, is visible only from stone courses on the ground. Much of what you can actually see today owes as much to the 1860s restoration as to the the original builders. The burial ground and the tomb of James III and Margaret of Denmark comprise the third aspect of today's Cambuskenneth Abbey. But perhaps the most interesting part of any visit to the abbey is the least obvious. Beyond the railed enclosure surrounding the main abbey complex are more remains and ruins in the rough pasture leading down to the riverside. These seem to correspond to the secondary ranges of buildings shown on the information board, and if so give a very rare opportunity to explore parts of an abbey ruin "in the wild".
The abbey was acquired by the crown in 1908, and it is presently managed by Historic Scotland. The abbey is open to visitors during the summer months. Visitors can enter the base room of the campanile; the stairs to the upper floors are locked, but are opened for visitors on occasion. #Abbey #Belfry #Cambuskenneth #Campanile #Catholic #Cemetery #Church #Graveyard #Historic #King_James #Medieval #Monastery #Religion #Roman #Ruin #Scotland #St_Mary #Stirling #Stone #Tomb #Tower