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Dumfries and Galloway ( ; , ) is one of 32 council areas of Scotlandmarker. To the north, it borders onto South Ayrshire, East Ayrshire and South Lanarkshire; in the east the Borders; and to the south the county of Cumbriamarker in Englandmarker. It lies to the north of the Solway Firthmarker and to the east of the Irish Seamarker. The region is well-known for its many artists and writers.


The Dumfries and Galloway region is composed of several sub areas and former counties.

From west to east:

The term 'Dumfries and Galloway' has been used since at latest the 19th century - by 1911 the three counties had a united Sheriffdom under that name. Dumfries and Galloway covers the majority of the Western area of the Southern Uplands [20799], it also hosts Scotland's most Southerly point, at the Mull of Gallowaymarker in the west of the region.


The region was created in 1975, by merging the former counties of Wigtownshiremarker, Kirkcudbrightshiremarker and Dumfriesshiremarker as a two-tier region with the districts of Wigtownshire, Stewartry, Nithsdale and Annandale and Eskdale within it. In 1996 the region became a unitary authority area and the districts were wound up. After 1996 the unitary authority became known as Dumfries and Galloway Council, instead of Dumfries and Galloway Regional Council.


Local transport strategy is co-ordinated on behalf of the council and Transport Scotland by SWESTRANS (The South West of Scotland Transport Partnership).


A Virgin Pendolino leaving Lockerbie station for Edinburgh
The region has 6 working railway stations. All are on the Glasgow South Western Line, except Lockerbiemarker which is on the West Coast Main Linemarker

Bus and coach

The area is served by buses which connect the main population centres. Express bus services link the main towns with Glasgow, Ayr, Edinburgh and Carlisle. Local bus services are also operated across the region.


Dumfries and Galloway is home to two ports which have services to Northern Ireland, both are in the West of the region. Stena Line have a port in the town of Stranraermarker, and P&O Irish Sea in the village of Cairnryanmarker.


The region also has no commercial airports; the nearest are Glasgow Prestwick Airportmarker and Carlisle Airportmarker. The region does host a number of private airfields.The town of Lockerbiemarker was the scene of the Pan Am Flight 103 terrorist attack on December 21 1988.


The main roads to and from the region are:

Emergency services

The Dumfries and Galloway Constabulary is the police force for the region, and is the smallest in the United Kingdom. Dumfries and Galloway Fire and Rescue Service provide firefighting services across the region. The Coastguard, Lifeboats, Moffat mountain rescue and Galloway Mountain Rescue also offer emergency services across Dumfries and Galloway.

NHS Dumfries and Galloway provide healthcare services across the region, the two main hospitals are the Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary in Dumfries and Galloway Community Hospital in Stranraer.


Dumfries & Galloway Council provides nursery, primary and secondary education across the region.

Alternative Schools

Nurseries and primary schools

For a list of nurseries and primary schools see this page.

Secondary schools

Stranraer Academy.


The region is known as a stronghold for several rare and protected species of amphibian, such as the Natterjack toad and the Great crested newt. There are also RSPB Nature Reserves at the Mull of Gallowaymarker, Wood of Cree (Galloway Forest Park), Ken Dee Marshes (near Loch Kenmarker) and Mereshead (near Dalbeattiemarker on the Solway Firthmarker).

Welcome sign

Towns and villages

Main settlements in 'bold text.

Places of interest

Council political composition

The council consists of 47 councillors elected for a four-year term from 13 wards. These wards were introduced for the 2007 election and each returns three or four members by the single transferable vote system of election. This system was introduced by the Local Governance Act 2004, as a means of ensuring a reasonably proportionately representative outcome.


The result of the 2003 election returned a council with no party having overall control. A 'silver' coalition was first formed invovling all parties but Conservative and Labour, after this coalition resigned Labour took minority control of the council. The following number of councillors were elected for each party as follows:
Party Councillors
Labour 14
Independent 12
Conservative 11
Scottish National Party 5
Liberal Democrat 5


The result of the 2007 election returned the following number of councillors for each party as follows:
Party Councillors
Conservative 18
Labour 14
Scottish National Party 10
Liberal Democrat 3
Independent 2

The council is currently controlled by a Conservative and Liberal Democrat minority coalition.

After the resignation of Bruce Hodgson (Conservative councillor for the Abbey ward) a by-election was held on 1 May 2008, with Michael Thomson (Conservative) being returned as the replacement councillor. On Tuesday 20 May 2008, Councillor Robert Higgins stood down as Scottish National Party (SNP) Group Leader, after he received a triple driving ban for reckless driving. Similarly Councillor John Charteris Conservative was banned from driving for 12 months and fined £500 after he to admitted drink driving at Dumfries Sheriff Court on Friday, 29 August 2008 [20801]

Current Councillors

By political groupings.


  • Graham Bell
  • Ian Blake
  • Ian Carruthers
  • John Charteris
  • John Dougan
  • Peter Duncan Business Leader
  • Gillian Dykes
  • Patsy Gilroy (Convener)
  • Allan Graham
  • Roger Grant
  • Jack Groom (Provost)
  • Ivor Hyslop (Leader) Group Leader
  • Ian Lindsay
  • Gail MacGregor
  • Denis R Male
  • Graham Nicol
  • Mike Thomson
  • Roberta Tuckfield


  • Ted Brown
  • James H Dempster
  • Archie Dryburgh
  • Grahame Forster
  • Dr. Jeff Leaver Secretary
  • Sean W Marshall
  • John Martin
  • David J McKie
  • Ronnie Nicholson Group Leader
  • Ronald E Ogilvie
  • Willie Scobie
  • Colin Smyth
  • David Stitt
  • John Syme

Scottish National Party

  • Brian Collins
  • Rob Davidson Group Leader
  • Iain Dick
  • Alistair Geddes
  • Robert J Higgins
  • Thomas Jacques
  • Lorna J McGowan Secretary
  • Dr. Doug Snell
  • Andrew S Wood
  • Alastair Witts Deputy Group Leader

Liberal Democrat

  • Richard Brodie
  • Michael Dickie Secretary
  • Sandra McDowall Group Leader


  • Jane S Maitland Group Leader
  • George N Prentice Secretary


Image:Dalveen Pass from Comb Head.jpg|Dalveen Pass from Comb Head summit, near Thornhill, Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland.Image:Lowther Southern uplands-HDR.jpg|Lowther Hill, somewhere near Dalveen Pass, Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland.Image:Sweetheart Abbey 20061214.jpg|Sweetheart Abbeymarker, Dumfries and Galloway (Scotland)Image:Orchardton tower 1.jpg|Orchardton Towermarker, Dumfries and Galloway, ScotlandImage:Caerlaverock SNH.jpg|Caerlaverock National Nature Reserve. View across the Nith Estuary, close to the Solway Firth, Dumfries & Galloway.Image:Tongland Powerstation 05-08-31 63.jpeg|Tongland Power station.Image:Mull of Galloway 05-09-03 33.jpeg|Mull of Gallowaymarker headland.Image:Mull of Galloway Lighthouse 05-09-03 14.jpeg|Mull of Galloway Lighthouse.Image:Dirk_(1).JPG|A Machars beach.Image:Machars_Coastline.JPG|Machars Coastline looking south from Cruggleton Castlemarker.Image:Cruggleton.JPG|The remains of Cruggleton Castle.Image:Torrs Warren Machars.jpg|The Machars, as viewed from Torrs Warren with Luce Baymarker standing between.Image:The Devils Beef Tub.jpg|The Devil's Beef Tubmarker.Image:Port William Harbour 04-11-15 03.jpeg|Port William harbour.Image:Moffat from the hills.JPG|Moffat.Image:River Nith estuary.jpg|River Nith Estuary.


See also

External links

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