Аллоа (англ. Alloa), город в центральной части Шотландии, административный центр области Клакманнаншир. Расположен в 3 км к западу от Клакманна и в 11 км к востоку от Стерлинга, на северном берегу реки Форт.
Название города произошло от гэльского слова ath-luath, что в переводе означает «быстрые воды» или «текущая вода».
Город впервые упоминается в документах 1398 г., когда король Роберт III пожаловал сэру Томасу Эрскину баронство Аллоа. Члены клана Эрскин благоустроили поселение, в частности ими была основана местная церковь, благодаря чему жителям больше не приходилось отправляться на молитву в близлежащие города Клакманнан или Таллибоди.
В 1565 г. королева Мария Стюарт даровала Джону Эрскину, одному из своих верных сторонников, титул графа Мара. Чета Эрскинов были дружна с королевой — однажды Мария Стюарт вместе с сыном, будущим королем Англии и Шотландии Яковом I, нанесла визит в фамильный замок Эрскинов — башню Аллоа. В 1571 — 1572 гг. 1-й граф Мара правил Шотландией в должности регента при малолетнем Якове.
Джон Эрскин, 6-й граф Мара, привнес большой вклад в развитие Аллоа. Благодаря его усилиям была благоустроена городская гавань, а в1710 г. Аллоа стал таможенным портом. На городских складах купцы Глазго хранили табак и сахар, предназначенные на экспорт в континентальную Европу. В 1713 г. по инициативе графа Мара была сооружена т. н. Гартморнская дамба — самое большое искусственное озеро в Шотландии — и водяные колеса. Появление нового источника энергии способствовало развитию угледобычи в Клакманнаншире, что в свою очередь вызвало быстрый индустриальный рост города.
К середине XIX в. население А. составляло 6 440 человек, портовые доки ежегодно обслуживали около 2 000 судов, а размер угледобычи равнялся 175 тысячам тонн угля в год. Также город был знаменит своими пивоварнями. В 1750 г. леди Френсис Эрскин основала в А. стекольный завод, который в 1908 г. первым в Великобритании перешёл на полностью автоматизированное производство. В 1955 г. завод стал частью концерна United Glass.
В начале XX в. развитие города приостановилось. Многие мелкие компании обанкротились либо были поглощены большими корпорациями. В 1950 г. прекратил свою деятельность городской порт, а в 1960-х гг. закрылась железнодорожная станция. В настоящий момент основные сферы экономики города — это стекольное производство и текстильная промышленность.
Alloa (Scottish Gaelic: Alamhagh) is a town and former burgh in Clackmannanshire, set in the Central Lowlands of Scotland. It lies on on the north bank of the Firth of Forth close to the foot of the Ochil Hills, 5.5 miles (8.9 km) east of Stirling and 7.9 miles (12.7 km) north of Falkirk.
The town was a burgh of barony, and today is the administrative centre of Clackmannanshire council. The economy of the town relied heavily on trade through its port with mainland Europe, but due to competition from modern ports it closed in 1970. Nowadays the economy is centred on retail and leisure after the closure of the main industries of the town; only one brewer and one glassmaker survive today. Alloa had a resident population of 18,989 at the time of the 2001 census.
During the 18th century, Alloa thrived as a river port through which the products of Glasgow manufacture were exported to continental Europe. At that time, and until the 1950s, the main industry to the north and east of the town was coal mining, and an extensive waggonway existed to take the coal to the harbour. The Earls of Mar owned many of the coal mines, and Robert Bald, a local mining engineer, was instrumental in providing water power from the Gartmorn Dam to operate both the mines and other industries such as weaving. Many traces of the waggonway and the Gartmorn Dam can still be seen today, and although the dam is no longer used for energy production or water supply, it is well used for fishing and leisure purposes.
The town itself was known for its weaving and glassmaking industries. Alloa was long associated with thebrewing industry, with at least nine major breweries producing ales. However industrial decline during the late 20th century has led to the economy relying on retail and leisure. Alloa was well positioned for the ale brewing trade, with a good water supply, close to local supplies of barley and good sea transport links. The first brewing firms in the town were Younger in 1762 and Meiklejohn in 1784. There were at least nine breweries in Alloa during the 1900s producing a variety of ales for home and export trades. Alloa ale was sent to London and George Younger had an extensive export trade in the West Indies, Egypt and the Far East. Alloa was also home to Alloa Brewery Co developing "Graham’s Golden Lager" in 1927 which was renamed "Skol" in the 1950s. Closures and mergers during the mid-20th century reduced the number of breweries to two and by 1999 only one remained, The Forth Brewery which became Williams Bros. in 2003.
Interesting places to visit near to Alloa include Alva, Tillicoultry, Dollar, Rumbling Bridge, Culross and Falkirk. Alloa is linked to the historic Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders housed at Stirling Castle. Many of the soldiers in WW2 fought under Montgomery at the Battle of El Alamein and Wadi Akrit where their commanding officer Lorne Campbell won a V.C. They were part of the 7th Argylls under the 51st Highland Division.
Alloa's most notable visible landmark is the 15th century Alloa Tower (National Trust for Scotland), the surviving part of the ancestral medieval residence of the Erskine family, the Earls of Mar.
Despite extensive alterations both externally and internally, the Tower retains its original medieval wooden roof and battlements, as well as some internal features. It is one of the largest and earliest of Scottish tower houses.
The town formerly contained a large number of 17th and 18th century buildings, but most were cleared away as 'slums' in the 18th to 19th century. However, Alloa does retain some historic architecture in the form of Alloa Tower, Tobias Bauchop's House (1695), Inglewood House, Gean House and Greenfield House.
Alloa is served by many food retailers including Iceland Frozen Foods, Tesco, Aldi, Lidl, Morrisons, Asda and Farmfoods. The Asda supermarket, opened in 2007 is adjacent to the site of the new railway station and was built on the land where the Alloa brewery once stood.
After the closure of the Stirling-Alloa-Dunfermline 1968 rail links to the town did not exist for 40 years up until 2008. The Stirling-Alloa-Kincardine rail linkproject was completed in May 2008, after much preparatory work, including drainage, and grouting of a large number of shallow mine workings with the laying of the new track commencing in September 2006. The project also involved the construction of a new bypass road and bridge which replaced a major level crossing which ran through the town. Alloa railway station reopened in May 2008.
First ScotRail now operates an hourly service from Alloa railway station to Glasgow Queen Street via Stirling,Larbert and Lenzie between 0641 and 2241 Monday to Saturday and between 1041 and 2141 on Sundays. Passengers can travel to Inverness, Edinburgh Waverley and Aberdeen with a change at Stirling, however for journeys to or from Edinburgh passengers with heavy luggage may find it more convenient to change at Larbert, where Edinburgh and Glasgow services use the same platform.
The new railway opened for traincrew route learning in early April 2008, followed by the opening to the public on Monday 19 May 2008. This had been preceded by an official opening on 15 May 2008, where Class K4 61994 "The Great Marquess" hauled four specials to Stirling. The return workings were hauled by Deltic 55022 "Royal Scots Grey." Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson officially reopened the line.
The town has two high schools; Lornshill Academy and Alloa Academy. Also five Primary schools: Claremont; Park; Sunnyside; St John's and St Mungos.
Alloa is currently served by two churches in the Church of Scotland, namely Alloa Ludgate Church ( formed by the union of Alloa North Parish Church and Alloa West Parish Church in 2009 in the building of the former West Church) and St Mungo's Parish Church.In 1978 the Very Rev Dr Peter Brodie (then minister at St Mungo's) was elected Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. Alloa is within the Church of Scotland's Presbytery of Stirling.
In addition, the United Free Church of Scotland serves the town centre through the congregation at Moncrieff U.F. Church in Drysdale Street.
There are churches of other denominations in the town, including Baptist Church,a Catholic church also named St Mungo's and St John's Episcopal Church. There are also congregations of Latter-day Saints and Jehovah's Witnesses in Alloa.
The headquarters of Action of Churches Together in Scotland (ACTS), the ecumenical organisation linking Scotland's largest churches, is located at Inglewood House, Alloa.
Alloa is home to one professional football club: Alloa Athletic Football Club. The club was formed in 1878 under the name of Clackmannan County but changed to its present day name of Alloa Athleticin 1883. The team currently compete in the Irn-Bru Scottish Football League Third Division after being relegated at the end of the 2010-11 season. Their home games are played at Recreation Park in Alloa.
Notable people from the burgh include the former footballer and commentator Alan Hansen who was born in Alloa, raised in Sauchie and attended Lornshill Academy, Alloa, and the artists Lys Hansen and Emma Scott-Smith. The Canadian politician George Brown, who also founded the Globe and Mail newspaper, was born in the town in 1818. The founder of Forte Holdings which later merged with Trust House to become Trust House Forte, Lord Charles Forte, was raised in Alloa.