Arbroath Abbey was founded in 1178 by King William the Lion for a group of Tironensian Benedictine monks from Kelso Abbey. It was consecrated in 1197 with a dedication to the deceased Saint Thomas Becket. The distinctive red sandstone ruins, with its iconic Round-O window, stands at the top of the High Street in Arbroath.

The Abbey, which was the richest in Scotland, is most famous for its association with the 1320 Declaration of Scottish Independence (otherwise known as the Declaration of Arbroath) believed to have been drafted at the Abbey by Abbot Bernard, who was the Chancellor of Scotland under King Robert I.