Paisley Abbey, Cradle of the Royal House of Stewart.
Paisley Abbey is located on the site of an old celtic church and community founded by St. Mirren in the 6th century, after his death the area became a popular site of pilgrimage making Paisley a place of significance. In 1163, Walter FitzAlan, the first High Steward of Scotland issued a charter for a priory to be set up in Paisley. Thirteen monks from the Cluniac priory at Much Wenlock came to found the community at Paisley which rapidly grew and was raised to the status of abbey in 1219. In 1307, Edward 1 of England had the abbey burned down but it was rebuilt later in the 14th century. William Wallace born nearby was educated for some time as a boy in the abbey. In 1316 Marjorie Bruce, daughter of Robert 1 (Robert the Bruce) of Scotland and wife of Walter Stewart, the sixth High Steward of Scotland, was out riding nearby while heavily pregnant and fell from her horse. She was taken to Paisley Abbey where she gave birth to King Robert II, the first of the Stewart Monarchs. She died as a result and is buried at the Abbey. Paisley Abbey is also the burial place of all six High Stewards of Scotland and the wives of Robert II and King Robert III. The 10th century Celtic Barochan Cross is housed in the abbey and there is a significant organ as well as many spectacular stained glass windows. The place of Paisley is the remaining part of the extensive monastry that existed and now houses a shop and cafe and ancilliary accommodation. A Church of Scotland parish kirk since the reformation and still so today where you can join the congregation, the abbey has survived many near disasters but has always managed to resurrect itself and many architects including Sir Robert Lorimer have been involved. http://www.paisleyabbey.org.uk