I took a trip to see the National Wallace Monument at Stirling in Scotland.
The monument itself is a tower on a hillock called Abbey Craig. It overlooks the site of the Battle of Stirling Bridge. It was at this battle that Andrew Moray and William Wallace led the Scots to defeat King Edward I of England’s armies in 1297.
The tower itself has a number of small exhibitions and galleries. One on each floor as you climb towards the viewing platform at the top.
I picked up a book on William Wallace from the gift shop. It’s a tough read, but very interesting.
It seems that very little is known about the origins of William Walace. He seems to have appeared out of nowhere with the knowledge, skills and charisma to lead men into battle and win.
Many of us may have the wrong idea about Wallace based on Mel Gibson’s portrayal of him in Braveheart.
In real life, I suspect he was less romantic, more viscious and had a passionaite dislike of the English having power over Scotland.
When reading about Wallace we are introduced to the circumstances that led to the English invasion into Scotland. Scotland’s last King reigned from 1241 to 1286. This was King Alexander III of Scotland. From what I’ve read he was a wise and kind King. He managed the precarious relationship with England well. At the point of his death it seems the fate of Scotland was sealed. The situation wasn’t helped by in-fighting amongst the clans of Scotland.