Dumfries and Galloway

©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland


A resort village on Whithorn Bay, Dumfries and Galloway, Garlieston (formerly Garliestown) was developed from c.1760 by Alexander Garlies, the 6th Earl of Galloway. His ancestral home near Whithorn had been destroyed by fire and a new house had been constructed to the south of Garlieston at Rigg Bay close to a village called Carswell. For his own privacy he removed the villagers of Carswell to the model village of Garlieston.

For a time the village was a centre of boat building, sail making and rope making. The harbour once had a fishing fleet and there were passenger sailings to the Isle of Man and Liverpool. A short branch of the Wigtownshire railway ran down to the harbour from 1876 but laterally it was only used for commercial traffic and it closed completely in 1964. Sections of the Mulberry Harbours were built and trialled here in 1941-44 before their use in Normandy to support the landings following D-Day. The remains of two pontoons can still be seen on the rocks nearby and a granite memorial next to the village hall commemorates these events and the 50th anniversary of the invasion of Europe.

Garlieston Bay is popular with yachts and a caravan site overlooks the bay to the south of the village.

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