Page 1

SCOTS Heritage Magazine SUMMER 2017








hail the Highland warriors

Official magazine of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs

Sc sum 17 cover.indd 1

06/06/2017 17:24:35


made in Scotland maadd ee ii nn SS cc o o tt ll aa nn dd m

Home Furnishings - Furniture - Rugs - Curtains - Interior Design Services Home Furnishings - Furniture - Rugs - Curtains - Interior Design Services

Home Furnishings - Furniture - Rugs - Curtains - Interior Design Services

Edinburgh Edinburgh Edinburgh

Sc sum anta.indd 2

Glasgow London Glasgow London G l awswg w.a o wn t a .c L o.u o n kd o n w w w.a n t a .c o.u k

Highlands Highlands Highlands

06/06/2017 11:46:39

Ceud mìle fàilte


his summer marks a fantastically interesting and important step forward for the Standing Council of Scottish Clans with our inclusion in the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo under the theme ‘a splash of tartan’. This unique innovation will see a succession of clansmen and women attend the Tattoo to represent their clans, a move which is a recognition of the central place that the clans still hold in the cultural life of our nation. Myself and a small party of Standing Council have already visited Edinburgh Castle, the first time that kilted clansmen and women have been allowed in since some of our more belligerent ancestors laid siege to the place back in 1745. After an absence of over 270 years it felt good to be back as we were welcomed back by back, as we were welcomed in the Great Hall by the Governor, Major-General Mike Riddell-Webster. With swords, pikes and shields lining every wall, the Great Hall is one of the most remarkable and atmospheric rooms in Scotland – it’s good to be included in that history once again.

e y a s r You Sir Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor, Contributing Editor

Sc sum 17 welcome.indd 3


It’s a recognition that the clans still hold a central place in the cultural life of our nation

CONTRIBUTORS DONALD CAMERON OF LOCHIEL The Chief of Clan Cameron reflects on the clan’s romantic past and the WWII commando training base set up at his Lochaber home, Achnacarry. JANICE HOPPER Having spent over a decade working as a TV director, specialising in documentaries on the arts, history and music, for the BBC, Janice now writes freelance for publications across the UK. JOHN WRIGHT Whilst living in Tasmania, writer John Wright became enthralled by stories of the colourful Scots who emigrated to Australia in the 19th century.

05/06/2017 16:30:41

SCOTS Heritage Magazine

SCOTS Heritage No. 76, published June 2017. © Scots Heritage Media in partnership with Scottish Field.

WHO’S WHO Editor: Richard Bath Creative Editor: Heddy Forrest Staff Writers: Morag Bootland, Hermione ListerKaye, Julia Welstead Contributing Editor: Sir Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor Designer: Amanda Richardson Artworker: Andrew Balahura Photographer: Angus Blackburn Publisher: Wyvex Media Ltd

Sc sum 17 welcome.indd 4

SCOTS HERITAGE North America PO Box 32510, Fridley MN 55432 USA. Fax: 763 571 8292. Email: SCOTS HERITAGE Australia CRM Australia, GPO Box 1846, Sydney, NSW 2001. Tel: 02 8227 6486. Fax: 02 8227 6410. Email: au SCOTS HERITAGE New Zealand PO Box 790, Shortland Street, Auckland, New Zealand. Tel: 09 625 3005. Fax: 09 625 3006. Toll Free Tel: 0800 113 305.


SCOTS Heritage is published four times a year in January, May, August and November. ISSN 14456699

SCOTS HERITAGE E-MAIL Subscription enquiries: subs@wyvexmedia. Advertising & sales: All other email:



SCOTS HERITAGE UK & Europe 496 Ferry Road, Edinburgh EH5 2DL, Scotland. Tel: +44 (0)131 551 1000. Fax: +44 (0)131 551 7900.


05/06/2017 16:42:44

9 9 ryary 9 ary llall 0101 anlltant 90x1. x. nrty x. CaC 3 03 0 amlClieme 30T1e0aTa imntea exT.a 3030 pClipl 3n3ac0nec mple aenTca 3131 omom 3it10rait opmli rnitc 0101 r cr c 3h01e1hr e ormc hitea oyuou 0I1n In yrocu hIenr r yr to to ru Itno fo fo ideide rfyoo idtoe gugu fo igdue


Inheritance Tax could pose a Inheritance Tax could pose a Inheritance Tax could pose a threat to your prosperity... threat threattotoyour yourprosperity... prosperity... hile most people are aware of the existence of Inheritance Tax (IHT), it is a subject which gives rise to W hile most people are aware of the existence of Inheritance Tax (IHT), it is a subject which gives rise to W some distaste or lack of interest and many, not surprisingly, would rather delay consideration of the matter. some distaste or lack of interest and many, not surprisingly, would rather delay consideration of the matter. So few people do anything about their potential IHT liability, the result is that HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) Sohile few people do anything about potential IHT liability, theTax result is that HM Revenue &which Customs (HMRC) most people are are aware of their the existence of Inheritance (IHT), it is aissubject which gives rise to to W hile most people aware of the existence of Inheritance Tax (IHT), it a subject gives rise W collected around £4.7 billion in 2015/16 alone (source: HM Revenue & Customs, 29 July 2016). collected around billion inand 2015/16 alone (source: HMwould Revenue & Customs, 29 July 2016). somesome distaste or lack of interest many, notnot surprisingly, rather delay consideration of of thethe matter. distaste or £4.7 lack of interest and many, surprisingly, would rather delay consideration matter.

So few people do anything about theirtheir potential IHTIHT liability, thethe result is that HMHM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) So few people do anything about potential liability, result is that Revenue & Customs We can create and implement highly effective tax-minimisation strategies, with a particular emphasis on (HMRC) reducing We can create and£4.7 implement highly effective tax-minimisation strategies, with a particular emphasis on reducing collected around £4.7 billion in 2015/16 alone (source: HMHM Revenue & Customs, 29 29 JulyJuly 2016). collected around billion in 2015/16 alone (source: Revenue & Customs, 2016). your estate’s liability to Inheritance Tax. your estate’s liability to Inheritance Tax. We can create and and implement highly effective tax-minimisation strategies, with a particular emphasis onon reducing We can create implement highly effective tax-minimisation strategies, with a particular emphasis reducing The levels and bases of taxation and reliefs from taxation can change at any time and are dependent on The levels and bases ofInheritance taxation reliefs from taxation can change at any time and are dependent on youryour estate’s liability to Inheritance Tax.and estate’s liability to Tax. individual circumstances. individual circumstances. The The levels and and basesbases of taxation andand reliefs from taxation cancan change at at anyany time andand areare dependent onon levels of taxation reliefs from taxation change time dependent For further information, or to request your complimentary guide to Inheritance Tax, contact: For further information, or to request your complimentary guide to Inheritance Tax, contact: individual circumstances. individual circumstances. For For further information, or toorrequest youryour complimentary guide to Inheritance Tax, contact: further information, to request complimentary guide to Inheritance Tax, contact:

CHRIS TWEED CHRIS TWEED WEALTH MANAGEMENT WEALTH MANAGEMENT Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management CHRIS TWEED CHRIS TWEED Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management WEALTH MANAGEMENT WEALTH MANAGEMENT Tel: 0131 303 0019 Tel: 0131 303 0019 Partner Practice of St. James’s Wealth Management Partner Practice of St. James’s PlacePlace Wealth Management Email: Email: Web: Web: Tel:Tel: 01310131 303303 00190019



PARTN S IN M A NAG ING YO UR W E A LTH Email: PARTNE RSE RI N M ANAGI NG YOUR WEALTH Email: Web: Web: The Partner Practice represents only St. James’s Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority) for the purpose of The Partner onlywealth St. James’s Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised theGroup’s Financial Conduct Authority) for the purpose of advisingPractice solely onrepresents the Group’s management products and services, more details of whichand areregulated set out onbythe website advising solely on the Group’s wealth management products services,term more details of whichSt.areJames’s set outPlace on the Group’s website The title ‘Partner Practice’ is theand marketing used to describe representatives. The title ‘Partner Practice’ is the marketing term used to describe St. James’s Place representatives.

Sc sum chris tweed.indd 5

The Partner Practice represents St. James’s Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised and regulated the Financial Conduct Authority) forpurpose the purpose The Partner Practice represents only St.only James’s Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised and regulated by thebyFinancial Conduct Authority) for the of of solely the Group’s management products and services, of which setonouttheonGroup’s the Group’s website advisingadvising solely on the on Group’s wealthwealth management products and services, more more detailsdetails of which are setareout website

H2SJP24356 11/16 H2SJP24356 11/16 06/06/2017 12:21:39

Welcome to Scots Heritage Magazine


We hope that you enjoy this issue of Scots Heritage magazine, and that you are impressed by the new improved digital format which has been introduced to enhance readability and ease of use. We wanted to bring you a more user-friendly experience so that readers no longer have to zoom in and out to be able to read all of the features. We hope you agree that we’ve managed to achieve that aim. If you enjoyed this version, then remember that via the Pocketmags website ( you can buy the most advanced version of Scots Heritage ever produced. This will give you extra images and content, allow you to play the music we’ve reviewed and read chapters of the books we review. In the meantime, we’d love to hear what you think of the developments at the magazine, so please feel free to write to us at


The Commando Monument at Spean Bridge. Ulmus Media/Shutterstock





Dear Editor




Sir Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor is gathering his clansfolk for the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo

Your letters to the Editor

The History Man Allan Massie looks back on The truth is WWI out Fieldthere the contoversial Marshal, Douglas Haig


Ten places that every Cameron should visit


Clan Cameron

Ten things every member of the Clan Cameron should know

Donald Cameron of Lochiel, Chief of Clan Cameron, explains why his clan is the most romantic of them all



It’s elementary

Meet John Grandison, a fourth generation heritage plasterer


There is so much more to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle than Sherlock Holmes contents.indd 6

Artisan 6


Finding the voice The radio station celebrating Scotland’s rich heritage


Picture perfect Stunning images from the Halkirk Games in Caithness

06/06/2017 16:40:55


Jay Leno

The US chat show host got his sensibilities from his Scottish mother


Ten of the best

Queen of the Hebrides Explore Islay’s rich history and the island’s abundance of wildlife and whisky

Minnie the monster 124

Destroyers destroyed

One dark and stormy night in 1918 two naval ships were lost in Orkney’s Scapa Flow



Take a glimpse inside Broomhall, the magnificent home of the Bruce family


Death duty

A Scottish cemetery in India is being given a new lease of life

contents.indd 7

A Scot whose crimes shocked New Zealand in the 1890s



Blow away the cobwebs with our best hangover cures

Iconic buildings



Lord of Isles The Lords of the Isles’ power once rivalled that of Scotland’s kings

87 To be a pilgrim

St Columba’s arrival on Iona shaped Scotland’s religious beliefs

Was Bonnie Prince Charlie wearing these imitationdiamond shoe buckles when he first landed on the Scottish mainland in 1745?

Bygone Scotland



John Bellasai Exploring the link between two iconic declarations

Take a step back in time to 1971 when shoulder pads were all the rage

News .....8 Contact us ......4 Puzzles....150 Questions & answers....104 Whisky .... 115 Clans & Societies .... 132 Music reviews .... 133 Book reviews .... 137 Social scene .... 146 06/06/2017 16:30:42


News... Image: Representatives of thirty clans march to Edinburgh Castle for the first time since the Jacobite uprising of 1745.

CLANS STORM THE CASTLE More than 30 clansmen and clanswomen marched to the Great Hall at Edinburgh Castle to mark a hugely momentous occasion in Scotland’s history. This is the first time that Scotland’s clans have been welcomed into the Castle since the Highland Clans marched to the City of Edinburgh to lay siege to the Castle during the Jacobite uprisings in 1745. The gathering was organised by The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo which is celebrating its own ties with the Scottish Diaspora this year. Clan members were treated to a guided tour of the medieval surroundings of the Great Hall, courtesy of Edinburgh Castle’s Governor, Major General Mike Riddell-Webster.

Scot sum 17 news.indd 8

05/06/2017 16:50:29

Image: See Scotland from a new perspective.

VIRTUALLY PERFECT People across the world can now instantly walk through the prehistoric village of Skara Brae in Orkney, soar high over Edinburgh Castle like a bird, journey into the depths of The Hollow Mountain of Ben Cruachan and experience the Northern Lights – all from the comfort of their own home, with the release of a new virtual reality app from VisitScotland. ScotlandVR is a ground-breaking virtual travel experience that allows people, wherever they are, to be immersed in Scotland’s remarkable attractions. It is hoped the ScotlandVR app, which is available for all Android and Apple users to download for free on Google Play and Apple Store, will inspire more people to discover Scotland for real. For more information, visit

Scot sum 17 news.indd 9

05/06/2017 16:50:54

Image: McLaren High School and Davidson’s Mains School were joint winners of the Endeavour Award.

Image: Pipers from George Watson’s College.

BAND TOGETHER A record number of pupils had Scotland’s capital city in fine tune after going head to head in the world’s largest schools piping competition. More than 800 youngsters from 120 schools across Scotland travelled to Edinburgh to take part in the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships (SSPBC) - a competition dedicated to celebrating Scotland’s musical tradition and the talent of the country’s young people.

Scot sum 17 news.indd 10

05/06/2017 16:51:14

Above: A lavishly-produced new guide to the Queen Mother’s Caithness Home the Castle of Mey has just been published.

MEY DAY The Castle and Gardens of Mey with a foreword by HRH The Prince Charles, Duke of Rothesay is a new lavishly produced guide to HM The Queen Mother’s much-loved Caithness home. The book contains over 200 full-colour photographs and illustrations as well as many historic black and white reproductions from the Royal archives. The book successfully captures the isolated charm of this ancient building and includes chapters on the Gardens of Mey, Canisbay Church and the varied birds and wildlife that await visitors to this most rugged of regions. Designed, photographed and published by Nick Hugh McCann, The Castle and Gardens of Mey is available from 17 May 2017, the opening date of the Castle for the season.

Scot sum 17 news.indd 11

05/06/2017 16:51:36


Image: Royal Scots Dragoon Guards lead Games Chieftain John Sinclair, 3rd Viscount Thurso into arena.

Words Hermione Lister-Kaye Images Angus Blackburn


Let the games


picture perfect.indd 12

05/06/2017 17:02:43

Image: Matt Vincent competes in the weight throw as his fellow competitors watch on.


stablished in 1886, the Halkirk Games in Caithness are held on the last weekend of July each year and attract competitors and spectators from around the world. In almost 100 events the total prize money amounts to ÂŁ20,000 on the day, the largest purse of any Highland Games in Scotland. Amateur and professional athletes compete in track and field events, Highland dancing, cycling races and, perhaps the most spectacular of the lot, the heavyweight events. Last year the Halkirk Games hosted the World Highland Games Heavy Events Championships which saw kilted strongmen come from across the globe to toss the caber, throw hammers and weights and putt the shot in a bid to take home the prestigious title. Games Chieftan, the Rt Hon Viscount Thurso opened the games, accompanied by the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.

picture perfect.indd 13

05/06/2017 17:03:10

Image: The top prize in the cycling events is £200 for the winner of the 800m cycle race.

Image: A young lass competes in the sword dance, a tradition that dates back to the 15th century.

Image: The sailor’s hornpipe was traditionally performed by sailors on a ship’s deck to keep the men active and in good health.

Image: Allan Hamilton (number 2) came out victorious in the track events.

picture perfect.indd 14

05/06/2017 17:03:36

Image: Winners of the Sailor’s Hornpipe dance take to the podium.

Image: Last year Allan Hamilton, from Edinburgh, broke the Halkirk Games high jump record.

Image: Dan McKim, from Kansas City, wears a Fraser tartan kilt to toss the caber.

Image: The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards pipers are permitted to wear Royal Stewart tartan, a priviledge granted by King George VI.

picture perfect.indd 15

05/06/2017 17:04:08

Image: A carpenter by trade, Craig Sinclair has competed as a heavyweight athlete for over 15 years.

Image: Louisiana born heavyweight Matt Vincent competing in the weight over the bar event.

Image: Local lass Emily MacDonald, from Thurso, won the U9 sack race (pictured in pink), closely followed by Lois King and Jessica Robertson.

To try our app version of this magazine which includes lots of fabulous, extra interactive content look us up on Pocketmags

picture perfect.indd 16

05/06/2017 17:06:13

Image: A member of the Sinclair clan is led in by the pipe band.

Image: In the hammer throw, the hammer, weighing 22lbs, thrown the furthest distance wins.

picture perfect.indd 17

05/06/2017 17:06:31

Jonathan Wheeler

A unique collection of vibrant watercolour paintings of Scotland’s most iconic castles, including Edinburgh, Urquhart, Eilean Donan and Stirling. Tel: +44 (0) 1309 692202 Sc sum 17 jonathan wheeler advert.indd 18

06/06/2017 11:48:11


Letters r e t t e l r a t S cy

Dear Editor

a g e l y s o r Lep

f o s i s y l a n a s ’ n o s l e N A . w y e s r o d r n p A e l r e D v t a s h e r t e c t a f n i n i h t i t d r i w o d t d s i e c d u r I rea o t B g e n h i t y r t t r , e d b e o . R m y r a l n e a b h t m n e e h o e s w b o s t a o h r e n h g i a n p e l l m a f s a e c e s r h s t a e f e n l o l i sm r n e o i h t t p o e y c r n e a p m l a c i i o l c s b a f u d n a p a f o y s the e o r n o p l e a l n n o e i t h , a n s w o u i e c n i c m i p a t o e h d t e At a , t d c o e f f o t a s t r e b u d n o t u a d s i e r o m g n f e e r o v a e h we b d l d l u u o o w w t t I n . e r a m e e e f r b d n d l a u e o disfigu c c n y a r g o o l n o g i n f h o c e n t s g i u n s r o e d m d a a s f o r a m e f h t o o t r f o o s n s i o i h t t c f i u r t t s g s n n i o d c n intere e a r t l s r a i e c d a f n u w d o n h a s e r n u o t t o i u t f d a e g c s n u i u d g E a r . u y r o o c t n s i e h , y l m s w o u r o f o h s d d n n e a Scot m , t e s r t a p d r e i e p l h e t h t e u e e o s b b d a d l n u e a r o o o w g m o n t r a e e l p o o t h I s . n n i e o r i t u m t a a r u I f e n e e e h m t g i t d t x e e p n a h h s t i s m e r S u g g i n f i l r i t S e these h T t a t s u b e o z i n h o r O b , n e o h t s r e d n A i n o T . d n Scotla

Double Dutch I was so interested to read the Going Dutch article by Alexander Fleming in the last issue (Spring 2017) as I have Flemish ancestry on both sides of my family and had always thought it unusual – but perhaps not! It is good, also, for us all to be reminded that the phenomenon of immigration is nothing new, and we should not be scared of it. Jess Ward, Scottish Borders

Sc sum 17 letters.indd 19

Sad saint

On reading the feature on Dunfermline Abbey in last quarter’s issue (Spring 2017), I was compelled to sign the petition and write to your publication. The fact that Margaret Wessex, the Pearl of Scotland, has been so neglected by history seems a real disservice to her memory. To think that 11 royal graves remain unmarked in one of Scotland’s most significant historical sites is simply unfathomable. We should cherish these ancient locations, especially as 2017 has been allocated as a year to celebrate our country’s history, heritage and archaeology. I am very surprised action on this matter has not been taken before as it seems so vital. Saint Margaret was born in political exile in Hungary. She returned to England during the

05/06/2017 17:11:14

Connecting with Canada

Just a quick note say that thanks to your review, Tannara has a new fan from Canada! The harmonising between fiddle and accordion shows a nod to tradition whilst remaining fresh and innovative. I can’t wait to hear more from them. Your magazine continues to strengthen my connection with the country my family ‘hail frae’, and I can only thank all who work on it. Catherine MCaughrean, Vancouver

Image: Dunfermline Abbey. short and ill fated reign of her brother as the last Anglo-Saxon King of England. However she was forced to flee to Scotland after the Norman Conquest. She then married King Malcolm III ‘Canmore’, the king who famously killed Macbeth, in 1070. Her devotion as a Roman Catholic and various charitable activities, including the founding of a ferry service crossing the Firth of Forth to allow pilgrims to travel to Dunfermline Abbey and St Andrews, saw her later canonised by Pope Innocent IV in 1250. She died at Edinburgh Castle in 1093, only hours after hearing of her husband’s death at the Battle of Alnwick and the mortal wounding of their eldest son and heir apparent, Prince Edward. A princess who died of a broken heart, then was made a saint – it is a wonder no scriptwriter has come up with a franchise to encourage visitors to Dunfermline. Alexandra Dundas, Cardiff

Provide for all

With each issue of Scots Heritage I look forward to reading about another clan, and the Clan Oliphant article was no exception. The rise from the ashes of a new Clan Chief after 260 years seems incredible, and congratulations must go to Richard Oliphant for his tenacity in working through the family ancestry to figure it all out. One thing that I especially noted is the Clan Oliphant motto, ‘Tout pourvoir’ or Provide for All, which does seem a much more worthy sentiment than my own Gunn clan motto, ‘Aut pax aut bellum’ – Either Peace or War! N. Miller, London

email your letters to

Sc sum 17 letters.indd 20

05/06/2017 17:11:50

The history man d l r o W f o d n e e h t r e t f a y r u t n e c a t s o m Al l l i t s g i a H s a l g u o D l a h s r a M d l e i F , e n O War s n o i t o m e l u f r e w o p evokes Words Allan Massie


Image: An excellent new history of Passchendaele has led Allan Massie to revisit the question of Haig’s culpability for the vast British losses in The Great War.

allan massie.indd 21

lmost ninety years after his death, almost a hundred since the end of the Great War, Field-Marshal Douglas Haig, the British Commander-in-Chief during World War One, remains a controversial figure. Some, mindful of the horrors of the Somme and Passchendaele, think of him as a ‘butcher’ who callously drove men to their death in these terrible battles. Far fewer remember the sequence of battles in the late summer and autumn of 1918 that broke the German Army, and which, coupled with the British blockade, brought Germany to the point of requesting an Armistice. It’s a safe bet that this last campaign, one of the greatest feats in the long history of the British Army, won’t get anything like the attention next year that the Somme and Passchendaele have received. As it happens I’ve just read the excellent Passchendaele: A New History by Nick Lloyd, Reader in Military and Imperial History at King’s College, London. He doesn’t downplay the terrible conditions

05/06/2017 17:15:59


Contrary to later opinion, he was trusted and even revered by the troops. Tens of thousands of his ex-soldiers filed past his coffin as it lay instate in Westminster Abbey in which men had to fight at Passchendaele (or to give it it’s official title the 3rd Battle of Ypres) or the appalling casualties, though by giving almost as much attention to the Germans as to the British, he achieves an unusual balance. The German numbers of dead, lost and wounded were almost as high, and, in Lloyd’s opinion, German morale was seriously impaired and never fully recovered. Moreover, in another sense too, 3rd Ypres was a turning point, the moment in the war when defence no longer had all the advantages. What of Haig? Lloyd regards 3rd Ypres as ‘a lost

allan massie.indd 22

Image:Was Haig a cold, calculated military genius or a compulsive gambler?

victory’. Haig’s vision of the great breakthrough when the cavalry would sweep forward was chimerical. He persisted in the battle when it could no longer be won. Haig was ‘a compulsive gambler with the compulsive gambler’s habit of throwing good money after bad’. This seems a fair judgement, tempered only by the fact that in 1918, the gamble

05/06/2017 17:16:28

Nevertheless Haig’s detractors could not deny two facts, though they were able to pervert both. First, in the face of a moral and physical challenge for which there was little precedent in the history of warfare, Haig’s nerve and confidence in ultimate victory never failed. (This was interpreted as indifference to heavy losses.) Second, the war ended in total

‘‘ Image: Prime Minister David Lloyd George and Haig had a fraught relationship typified by a mutual lack of understanding.

came good and Haig scooped the pool. Immediately after victory, Haig’s star shone. He was made an earl and the Haig family’s ancestral home, Bemersyde, in the Borders was bought for him by a grateful nation. He devoted the years till he died, to the care of war-damaged soldiers: the Earl Haig Poppy Fund still does so. Contrary to later opinion, he was trusted and even revered by the troops. Tens of thousands of his ex-soldiers filed past his coffin as it lay in-state in Westminster Abbey. His reputation was damaged by Lloyd George’s mendacious and self-serving War Memoirs.

allan massie.indd 23

Lloyd George disliked and distrusted him, partly because Haig was taciturn, sometimes to the point of inarticulacy, partly because Haig himself distrusted politicians victory with the British Army advancing on all fronts. That victory, incidentally, was achieved in defiance of doubts expressed by Lloyd George and his Cabinet colleagues. No British general has commanded a bigger army in a bigger war than Haig. The cost of victory was appalling, but no one has ever proposed an alternative strategy that would have secured victory more easily and cheaply. Haig recognised that the war had to be won on the Western Front and it was won. One may think it an unnecessary war – I think so myself – but the fact that it was fought was not Haig’s responsibility. Perhaps there should have been a negotiated

05/06/2017 17:16:46

The truth is that Haig had to deal with an unprecedented problem: how to win the first truly industrial war, a war of nations in arms, not professional armies Peace in 1916 when the horror of the war of attrition was all too evident. But it’s hard to see what form a Peace Treaty then could have taken when Germany still occupied Belgium, much of northern France and the disputed territories of Alsace and Lorraine. How does Haig rank among the great British commanders? He didn’t have Marlborough’s flair. He was as resolute as Wellington but not as careful to husband his troops – though it may be mentioned that in view of the size of their respective armies, the death toll at Waterloo, a battle fought on only a single day, was comparable to the losses Haig’s army suffered. Nor did Haig ever have the superiority in numbers and material that Montgomery enjoyed in North Africa and Normandy. The truth is that Haig had to deal with an unprecedented problem: how to win the first truly industrial war, a war of nations in arms, not professional armies. He made mistakes – terrible and costly mistakes; but so did every commander of a great army in the Great War. Germans,

allan massie.indd 24

Russians, French and British generals all faced the same difficulties. None did conspicuously better than Haig. His relations with his political masters were difficult. Lloyd George disliked and distrusted him, partly because Haig was taciturn, sometimes to the point of inarticulacy, partly because Haig was so distrusting of politicians. His great quality was resolution; he never lost his belief in ultimate victory. He was obstinate, pig-headed; the Scots word ‘thrawn’ describes him well. Incidentally John Buchan, who knew and admired him, thought that under the stress of war, the Field-Marshal, who was educated at Clifton, Oxford and Sandhurst, came to speak with a noticeably broader Scots accent – of the Borders, rather than of Edinburgh, where he was born, or Fife, where he spent his early childhood. As for his confidence in ultimate victory, it stemmed, Lloyd writes, ‘from his profound faith in the ability of the men he commanded’. That faith would be justified, eventually, at enormous cost.

05/06/2017 17:17:02

Expertly composed ™

At The GlenDronach Distillery, we have carried forth the tradition of our founder James Allardice since 1826, maturing our whisky in Pedro Ximenez and Oloroso sherry casks crafted from the finest wood. Making whisky that is of elegant and complex character has become our signature and we are renowned as the masters of sherry cask maturation. The award-winning* The GlenDronach range draws upon our repertoire of expertise to offer an exquisite composition of richly sherried Highland Single Malt Scotch Whiskies.

Savour with time, drink responsibly.

Š 2017 The GlenDronach is a registered trademark, all rights reserved. *Category winning products in the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2016

Sc sum glendronach distillery.indd 25

06/06/2017 11:51:13

GREAT SCOTS Words Stuart Kelly

Image: Conan Doyle ran for parliament twice, representing the Unionist Party.




great scots.indd 26

05/06/2017 17:21:28


ou won’t! You can’t! You mustn’t!’ These were the words in which Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle’s mother responded to her son’s suggestion, in 1891, that he would kill off his most famous character. ‘I think of slaying Holmes,’ he said, ‘and winding him up for good and all. He takes my mind from better things.’ He did indeed slay Sherlock Holmes, two years later, with the iconic detective and his nemesis Moriarty plunging to their deaths at the Reichenbach Falls. Seven years later, Holmes was back, in The Hound of the Baskervilles. Publishers were so keen to have new Holmes stories that Conan Doyle would deliberately ask for extortionately high fees; the publishers were happy to pay, however high the sum he requested. Conan Doyle created one of

the most enduring fictional characters – played by, among others, Basil Rathbone, Jeremy Brett and most recently Benedict Cumberbatch. Holmes has outlived his own and his creator’s death, appearing in works by Michael Chabon, Michael Dibdin, Neil Gaiman and Stephen Fry. In Conan Doyle’s own lifetime, there were unauthorised stories featuring the ‘consulting detective’ – who never wore a deerstalker in the stories, or ever said ‘Elementary, my dear Watson’ in Conan Doyle’s work – appearing in Germany. Conan Doyle was so bored with his most viral creation that he never re-read the older stories when asked to pen a new one. This explains why the wound Dr Watson received in Afghanistan miraculously moves around his body from tale to tale, or why his first name k c o rl e h S f o e tu ta s A : e g a Im , h rg u b in d E , e c la P y rd a ic Holmes in P ir S f o e c la p th ir b e th s celebrate Ar thur Conan Doyle.

great scots.indd 27

05/06/2017 17:21:56

Clockwise from left: Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Sherlock and Martin Freeman as Watson in the BBC adaptation; Basil Rathbone played Sherlock from 1939-46; The famous detective first appears in the 1887 novel A Study in Scarlet.

seems to change, or whether or not he is married is in some doubt. Legions of fans have spent decades coming up with solutions for what was really just slapdashery. Conan Doyle certainly knew about the erratic. Born in Edinburgh in 1859, his father was an alcoholic who ended his days in an asylum. The family was split up and when returned to each other lived in a squalid tenement. His uncles helped financially, and Conan Doyle went on to study medicine in Edinburgh, where his tutor, Joseph Bell, provided the model for his deductive detective. He was already writing fiction as a student, and soon it eclipsed his interest in a medical career. That said, although his first pub-

great scots.indd 28

lished article was a work of fiction – ‘The Mystery of the Sasassa Valley’ – his second was an academic work: ‘Gelseminum as a Poison’. What were the ‘better things’ that Conan Doyle wished to pursue while being haunted by Sherlock? He created at least two equally interesting characters. The first is Brigadier Etienne Gerard, whose stories appeared in The Strand magazine between 1894 and 1903. Gerard is almost the antithesis of Holmes: he is French, a bumptious lothario and a fighter not a thinker. He is frequently close to Napoleon, with whom he conducts secret missions, is at Waterloo and Minsk and St Helena, and plays up every stereotype the British might have of an arrogant French officer. The short stories in which Gerard appears have a real vim and wit about them: as much as he is satirising a particular kind of Gallic

05/06/2017 17:28:31

self-importance, Conan Doyle takes pot shots at the English. Gerard in one story will teach the English how to box and duel, and even has a go at fox hunting. George Macdonald Fraser is on record as saying how much Gerard was an inspiration for his own rouge hero, Flashman. Conan Doyle’s other project was Professor George Edward Challenger. Again, although he shares the genius of Holmes, he is also different in significant ways. When the narrator first meets him he remarks: ‘His head was enormous, the largest I have ever seen on a human being’. He is self-important, angry, crass, larger than life and without a shred of self-control, ‘a homicidal ma-

great scots.indd 29

niac with a turn for science’. Challenger first appears in The Lost World in 1912, when he takes an expedition to South America and discovers dinosaurs – no Jurassic Park without Challenger being there first. He is brought back in The Poison Belt the next year, when he discovers that the Earth is about to pass through toxic ‘ether’ and manages to experience the situation through the unlikely antidote of oxygen. It is a better novel than one might think: it is fascinating on what might happen when technology Above from left to right: Mary Foley Doyle, Arthur’s mother; Conan Doyle volunteered as a military doctor during the Boer War in 1900; Sherlock inspiration Joseph Bell. Left: Arthur with his father Charles Altamont Doyle.

05/06/2017 17:29:18

There was a silliness and a sadness to Conan Doyle. He was indubitably one of Scotland’s greatest authors stops, and eerie about the cities without living people. He appeared in one other novel, The Land of Mist, trying to understand what happens after death. That subject is one Conan Doyle was famously obsessed with investigating and propagating. He was taken in by the ‘Cottingley Fairies’ hoax, one which nowadays looks so screamingly obvious that it is difficult to take seriously that anyone ever thought this was a photograph of fairies. It should be noted that photographs were a relatively new invention so perhaps his gullibility is more comprehensible. Although raised a Catholic, Conan Doyle’s interest in spiritualism was Left: Faked images of the Cottingley Fairies in 1917 caught the imagination of many, including Conan Doyle. Right: The dashing Brigadier Gerard, painted by Eric d’Antin.

great scots.indd 30

there from the outset. It is sometimes erroneously claimed that Conan Doyle’s belief came about through the losses he endured in the First World War - two brothers-in-law, two nephews and a son – yet he had openly spoken about it before any of the deaths. Certain aspects of it feature in the first novel he wrote, The Mystery of Cloomber, which was published in 1889. In it, General Heatherstone has become a reclusive paranoid, a situation exacerbated when three mysterious Buddhist monks arrive in Wigtownshire. It transpires the General had killed a monk in Afghanistan, and the Buddhists – oddly, given their beliefs – are out for revenge. But Conan Doyle’s ‘better things’ might not have been in the realm of fiction. He was a significant writer of

05/06/2017 17:29:38

non-fiction as well. Although we might shrink a bit today from Conan Doyle’s defence of the Boer War – The War in South Africa: Its Cause and Conduct, the book he claimed was responsible for his knighthood – other works are more significant. The Crime of the Congo is an early intervention into a campaign against the tyrannous Belgian regime. He worked on but did not write about the miscarriages of justice around George Edalji and the Glaswegian Oscar Slater – it would take later novelists such as Julian Barnes and Frank Kuppner to dramatise these incidents in his life. He also, in a piece of double-think, wrote about Houdini. Houdini was famous, not just for his stage-shows, but for debunking how spiritualists could fake their supposedly supernatural effects by duplicating them. Conan Doyle

great scots.indd 31

penned an essay arguing that Houdini actually had preternatural powers. There was a silliness and a sadness to Conan Doyle. He was indubitably one of Scotland’s greatest authors. His move south and love of cricket make many in contemporary Scotland flinch from him, as if he stopped being Scottish when he crossed the Tweed. Yet there is a seriousness to him as well; a man obsessed with how machines change humans, how vaccines are necessary, how logic is important, how justice must be defended, how the world is bigger and stranger than might be thought. If you read outside the Holmes books, you find a very different writer. In Edinburgh’s Picardy Place there is a statue of Sherlock Holmes. There is not one of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Perhaps he would appreciate the irony.

05/06/2017 17:29:58

™ ™








Exposed to the North Sea air, our award-winning* Glenglassaugh Single Malt Scotch Whisky slowly DISTILLED ON THE INVIGORATING SHORES OF SANDEND BAY Exposed to the North Sea air, our award-winning* Glenglassaugh Single Malt Scotch Whisky matures in the coastal warehouses of our distillery, re-awakened in 2008 after more than 20 years slowly of silence. matures in the coastal warehouses of our distillery, re-awakened in 2008 after more than 20 years of silence. Exposed to the North Sea air, our award-winning* Glenglassaugh Single Malt Scotch Whisky slowly the coastal warehouses of our distillery, re-awakened in 2008 after more than 20 years of silence. EXPERIENCEmatures FULLY,inDRINK RESPONSIBLY EXPERIENCE FULLY, DRINK RESPONSIBLY © 2017 Glenglassaugh is a registered trademark, all rights reserved.

*Category winning products in the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2015 & 2016 © 2017 Glenglassaugh is a registered trademark, all rights reserved. *Category winning productsDRINK in the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2015 & 2016 EXPERIENCE FULLY, RESPONSIBLY © 2017 Glenglassaugh is a registered trademark, all rights reserved. Sc sum glenglassaugh.indd 32

06/06/2017 11:52:43


Image: Victorian illustrator RR McIan’s splendid portrait of a MacDonald Lord of the Isles.

Lords of the Isles


lord of isles.indd 33

05/06/2017 17:33:29


n the closing years of the 8th century the Western Isles of Scotland felt the full destructive force of Viking raids. Waves of Vikings arrived and then stayed, settling the Northern and Western Isles and ruling by royal decree of the King of Norway. But the King of Scots looked on the islands with a hungry eye. Around 1117 a child of mixed Gaelic and Norse blood was born, destined to found the dynasty known as the Lords of the Isles. The boy’s name was Somerled, Norse for ‘summer voyager’, a reference to the Vikings’ raiding season after crop-sowing time in the spring. Somerled married Ragnhild, daughter of Olaf the Red, King of Man, whose territory included the Western Isles. King Olaf was murdered by his nephBelow: A Viking longship hit by gales before the Battle of Largs. Below Right: Hakon’s flagship, Krossunden, boasted 37 pairs of oars and carried over 300 men.

lord of isles.indd 34

Waves of Vikings arrived and then stayed, settling the Northern and Western Isles and ruling by royal decree of the King of Norway ew, but Olaf ’s son, Godfrey the Black, defeated his treacherous cousin to inherit the crown. Godfrey was an unpopular ruler, however, which led to rebellion. Somerled grabbed the opportunity to claim his brother-in-law’s kingdom, supposedly for his own son, Dughall. Somerled’s fleet of galleys attacked Godfrey’s ships off the Isle of Man, defeating Godfrey, who eventually fled to Norway. Somerled’s independent kingdom would prove to be an irritation to both the kings of Norway and Scotland. He was killed in 1164 while fighting King Malcolm IV of Scotland. After Somerled’s death, his three sons ruled their father’s divided territory. These sons became the founders of three Scottish clans. The descendants of Aonghus became Clan McRuari or McRory, Dughall’s descendants became Clan

05/06/2017 17:33:45

MacDougall while Ragnald’s son, Donald Mor McRanald, founded the powerful Clan MacDonald. In 1262 the Scots attacked Skye in a direct challenge to Norwegian rule. King Hakon IV (the Old) was outraged. The following year he raised a huge battle fleet, asserting Norwegian sovereignty over the disputed Western Isles. Hakon led the expedition in his elaborately decorated longship, Krossunden (Cross-clinker), flaunting a golden dragon’s head at both stem and stern. The ship boasted thirty-seven pairs of oars and carried 300 men. A further 120 ships reputedly comprised his fleet. Donald Mor McRanald’s son, Angus Mor MacDonald (the first to hold that surname), fought alongside King Hakon against Scotland’s King Alexander III. Alexander cleverly delayed negotiations until gales arrived and several of Hakon’s ships were swept ashore. The Scots attacked when the Norwegians tried to save their beached ships, forcing them to flee. The Battle of Largs, as it became known, meant the end of Norwegian rule in the Western Isles. King Hakon soon took ill, dying in Orkney. He was temporarily buried in St Magnus Cathedral and later brought to Bergen to be interred with his ances-

lord of isles.indd 35

Image: The Battle of Largs, after gales pushed King Hakon’s ships ashore, was the end of Norwegian rule of the Western Isles.

tors. Hakon’s son leased the Western Isles to Scotland in 1266 in the Treaty of Perth. Angus Mor MacDonald tactfully bowed the knee to a relieved King Alexander III, who had no wish to stir the ire of the fearsome MacDonalds, giving Angus the right to rule his own island territory. Angus Mor’s grandson, Angus Og of Islay, fought with Robert the Bruce at the Battle of Bannockburn. He was re-

05/06/2017 17:34:31

Left: A Lord of the Isles coin. Below: James I of Scotland tried to break the power of the Lords of the Isles but was defeated by the MacDonalds at the Battle of Inverlochy.

warded with land in Lochaber, Ardnamurchan, Morvern, Duror and Glencoe. On King Robert the Bruce’s death, Angus Og’s son, John of Islay, was approached by Edward Balliol. The English-backed rival to the throne offered John land in Kintyre and Knapdale, along with the Isle of Skye and Lewis, if he would help Balliol overthrow Robert’s infant son, David II. John agreed and wrote to England’s King Edward III to confirm the land grants, signing the letter Dominus Insularum, or ‘Lord of the Isles’. This was the first time the title was used. On King David II’s return to power John of Islay was considered a traitor, but by swearing allegiance to

the king the consummate diplomat kept most of his lands. John married Margaret Stewart, great-granddaughter of Robert the Bruce. John’s son, Donald, later fell out with his Stewart relations by claiming the Earldom of Ross, which he thought his wife should inherit. This claim brought him into conflict with Robert Stewart, 1st Duke of Albany, an utterly ruthless man then holding the reins of power in Scotland. Donald led an army towards Aberdeen in 1411, but Robert checked him at the Battle of Harlaw. Donald kept his lands only by renouncing his claim to Ross. His son, Alexander of Islay, later claimed Ross as well, prompting his imprisonment by King James I. Once released, Alexander led an attack on Inverness, resulting once again in his captivity. King James I tried to break the power of the Lord of the Isles by sending an army against

Scotland’s King Alexander III had no wish to stir the ire of the fearsome MacDonalds lord of isles.indd 36

05/06/2017 17:34:54

Image: The title of Lord of Isles is used to this day and is betowed on the heir to the throne, currently HRH Prince Charles, who also holds the titles of Prince of Wales and Duke of Rothesay.

the MacDonald clan, but when the MacDonalds defeated him at the Battle of Inverlochy, Alexander was released. He took the disputed title Earl of Ross but moved his power base from the isles to Inverness-shire, alienating him from his clan. Alexander was succeeded by his son John MacDonald II, who threw away his inheritance on a greedy and foolhardy gamble. John made a treaty with King Henry IV of England agreeing to ‘English help’ in seizing control of all the land north of the Firth of Forth. John would pay homage to King Henry in return. In response, Scotland’s King James III stripped John of much of his lands and titles. Though John retained the title Lord of the Isles, the Scottish king claimed the right to bestow it as he

lord of isles.indd 37

chose under royal patronage. With John humiliated and greatly reduced in power, his illegitimate son, Angus Og, overthrew him as clan chief. When Angus was murdered in 1490, John attempted to regain his chiefdom, reasserting his claim to the Earldom of Ross, but he was defeated at the hands of the Mackenzies. Scotland’s King James IV lost patience, stripping John of his title. The once Lord of the Isles lived out his life in the Lowlands on a royal pension. At the Union of the Crowns in 1603, the title became one of the honours bestowed on the heir to the throne of Great Britain. The romantic title, the Lord of the Isles, is still used today and is currently held by the Duke of Rothsay, The Prince of Wales, HRH Prince Charles.

05/06/2017 17:35:16


Image: Jimmy Morrell, a true Brandane, one of Bute’s characters from The Islander’s feature in the March issue.

were The way we



ith the Seventies often seen as an explosion of colour, technology and music, Scottish Field continued to offer a focus on a country of skilled rural people and their passion for their surroundings. This respect for tradition, as well as an appreciation of modernity saw

old magazine piece.indd 38

05/06/2017 17:39:24

Image: Huntsman Willie White of the Lauderdale Hunt, pictured with hounds at a meet. White had announced his retirement after 53 years of hunt service.

The magazine offered tradition and the best of innovation for its readers records, fashion, sports cars, exotic holidays and country homes and gardens, all featuring within the pages of the magazine. Fashions and tastes may have changed, but Scotland is still a country of design and beauty. The year also saw the last families leaving the tiny island of Scarp in the Outer Hebrides to move across to the bigger neighbouring island of Harris. Scarp is most famous for being the site of experiments with rocket mail, which failed to take off due to the cost and numerous errors. The country was moving forward, and the magazine offered tradition and the best of innovation for its readers.

old magazine piece.indd 39

05/06/2017 17:39:39

Image: January’s cover was Invermark Castle, Glen Esk, Angus taken by John Watt.

old magazine piece.indd 40

05/06/2017 17:39:56

Image: Designs from Bute Looms, marketed as postal couture despite a postal strike.

old magazine piece.indd 41

05/06/2017 17:40:12

Image: Wrights’ and Coopers’ Place in Old Aberdeen, photographed by John Watt

old magazine piece.indd 42

05/06/2017 17:40:27

Image: Two models in Triumph swimwear in the May Fashion Feature. Both the swimsuit and matching cover up are in the floral Antron jersey print.

Image: The eyrie of a Golden Eagle and their chick, safely set high above the surrounding countryside.

old magazine piece.indd 43

05/06/2017 17:40:44

Image: A man and his dog at Kirkcudbright Quayside, standing beside the Harbour Gallery.

Image: Painter and etcher Philip Reeves at work in his Glasgow studio.

old magazine piece.indd 44

05/06/2017 17:41:03


In excess


1 2

Let’s get physical

The last thing most people want after a night of excess is to engage in physical activity but oxygen increases the metabolism, helping to break down toxins more quickly. An old scuba diving trick to clear the head is to take a few blasts of oxygen from the air tanks. So there may be some method in the madness of Edinburgh’s New Year’s Day loony dookers then – though a long walk would surely suffice. Several cultures also suggest a bout of slap and tickle with your spouse or partner as a hangover cure-all (although if you’ve said or done something you shouldn’t when you were drunk, good luck).

Hang-over easy

Scientists believe one food in particular might be the key to curing hangovers: the humble egg. Egg yolk contains a substance that breaks down the toxin that creates the feeling of nausea, which is perhaps why a number of hangover cures involve eggs. The Romans used to eat owl eggs, whilst the prairie oyster, for example, also includes raw egg, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco. In 1894, after a particularly heavy night, New York socialite Lemuel Benedict asked the kitchen at the Waldorf Astoria hotel to produce ‘some buttered toast, crisp bacon, two poached eggs, and a hooker of hollandaise sauce’, now known as eggs Benedict. 45

Untitled-16 45

06/06/2017 15:30:38

The older the better For the ancient Greeks it was sheep lungs, the Romans believed that deep fried canaries would do the trick and the Assyrians swore by a potion made from the beaks of two birds and oil from the wood of the myrrh tree. Medieval Englanders swallowed a paste of bitter almonds and eels, whilst the Scots favoured the Highland Fling – hot buttermilk, corn flour, salt and pepper. In the American Wild West, tea made with rabbit droppings was a common remedy and English chimney sweeps ate ground soot to calm their stomachs after a night on the tiles.

4 5


Made from Girders Many doctors stress the importance of staying away from fizzy drinks after an alcohol-fuelled evening because the carbon dioxide speeds up the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream. However, the iconic Scottish drink, Irn Bru, is different. The Oxford Companion to Food calls it ‘important for its symbolic value as well as its refreshing qualities’ and highlights its value as a great hangover cure. Scottish butchers have also created what could be the daddy of hangover cures: the Irn Bru square sausage.

The weird and wonderful

Some of the strangest hangover cures involve rituals. In Haiti, for example, they stick 13 black-headed pins into the cork of the bottle that caused the damage, which is fine as long as you didn’t drink a bottle of lager or a screw top wine. In Ireland, it is thought that burying the hungover individual up to their neck in a sandy riverbank will help. It would certainly take their mind off a mild headache.


Untitled-16 46

06/06/2017 15:31:01

6 7

The full British

For many, the full English or Scottish fry-up is the hangover cure par excellence – with the bacon sandwich having similar properties. For any carnivore who has had a heavy night on the randan and who is confident they won’t vomit, the greasy fried breakfast is a tried and tested classic. Served with a cup of sweet tea, it might not actually help alleviate any of your symptoms but it’s the perfect excuse to indulge in a guilt-free calorie jamboree.

Food for thought Eating increases the metabolism, allowing the toxins produced by alcohol to be broken down more rapidly, so it’s no surprise that food features prominently as a hangover cure across the world. What constitutes good hangover food varies considerably from country to country. For Australians it’s vegemite on toast, the Germans go for sour herring, whilst the Japanese consume pickled plums. Even less appetising are the Romanian remedy of tripe and the Mongolian pickme-up of pickled sheep eyes in tomato sauce. These are nothing, however, compared to Italy’s secret to a clear head: dried bull penis.

Hair of the dog

8 Untitled-16 47

This rather dubious hangover remedy refers to the Elizabethan method of treating dog bites, in which the hair of the animal in question was eaten by victims. Famous alcoholic pick-me-ups include the Bloody Mary (vodka, tomato juice and spices or flavourings), Black Velvet (equal parts champagne and flat Guinness), and the Savoy Corpse Reviver (brandy, fernet branca and crème de menthe). Ernest Hemingway swore by a concoction of tomato juice and beer. This remedy might not work but it’s a sure fire way of keeping the party going. 47

06/06/2017 15:31:23


The drugs might work For many of the overly hungover, the medicine cabinet is the first port of call. A number of over-the-counter drugs can alleviate some of the side-effects of a heavy session: aspirin, ibuprofen, alka seltzer and berocca are just a few. Apparently during the Cold War the Russian Academy of Sciences spent 25 years researching and developing a ‘miracle’ drug called RU-21, for KGB agents who wanted to stay sober while getting their contacts drunk. It failed, but is by all accounts a very effective hangover cure.

Prevention is better than cure


If you can accept beforehand that you are not going to ‘take it easy this time’, then there are a number of ways in which you can lessen the effects of your alcoholic excess. Drinking plenty of water both before and during the session will certainly help, and a pint of water before going to bed is also sensible. Of course drinking water takes up space for alcohol, so the Puerto Ricans have devised another preventative measure: they rub slices of lemon under their armpits prior to a drinking session.


Untitled-16 48

06/06/2017 15:31:46

CLAN CAMERON Words Hermione Lister-Kaye Images Angus Blackburn

Image: 27th Chief, Donald Cameron of Lochiel at the Commando Memorial in Spean Bridge.

romance Highland


clan cameron main piece.indd 49

05/06/2017 17:55:41

Image: The Lochiel at Achnacarry with estate manager and kinsman Astie Cameron piping The March of the Camerons.


n a meander of the River Arkaig, nestled into an isthmus of land connecting Loch Lochy and Loch Arkaig, is Achnacarry, the seat of the chiefs of Clan Cameron of Lochiel. Now home to the 27th chief, Donald Angus Cameron, who is known simply as ‘Lochiel’, Achnacarry comprises of over 60,000 acres of wild, west coast hillside and forest. ‘We are one of only a few

clan cameron main piece.indd 50

clans who still own such a large area of their ancient clan lands,’ says the current Lochiel. For such a long established clan, there is little certainty of its ancient origins. A popular idea is that the name derives from the Gaelic Cam-shron, meaning crooked nose and that the clan were descendants of Danish royals who assisted the restoration of King Fergus II of Dál Riata, a Gaelic king-

05/06/2017 17:56:21

We let our hearts rule over our heads, unlike the neighbouring Campbells who were far more political

Image: Gentle Lochiel, the 19th Chief, was kind to his tenants and a staunch Jacobite.

dom that stretched from Skye to Arran and included parts of Northern Ireland, in around 780. However it wasn’t until the 15th century that the Camerons had become an established clan in the Lochaber area, firstly seizing Tor Castle from the Clan Mackintosh, and later at Achnacarry. The first authenticated Chief of Clan Cameron is Donald Dubh, the 11th Chief, who lived from 1400 1460, however it wasn’t until the 16th century that the 14th chief, Ewen, was granted a charter of confirmation of the lands of Lochiel, thus giving them their current territorial title. The Camerons have long had a reputation as one of the oldest and most romantic clans, mostly due to their im-

clan cameron main piece.indd 51

placable support of the Stuart cause. Lochiel proudly affirms, ‘an anagram of Cameron is ‘romance’ – we let our hearts rule over our heads, unlike the neighbouring Campbells who were far more political.’ And this is very true for if it weren’t for the 700 Camerons who travelled to Glenfinnan to meet Bonnie Prince Charlie when he first arrived on the Scottish mainland and raised his royal standard in July 1745, he may not have continued his rebellion, for lack of military support. These men were led by the 19th chief, ‘Gentle Lochiel’. Faced with an impossible predicament of honour over common sense, it is said Gentle Lochiel took some persuading but in the end chose honour and followed the Prince to battle. He gained the moniker ‘gentle’ for demanding that injured Government soldiers taken hostage after the Battle of Prestonpans be cared for. To this day it is the unique right of the current Lochiel for the bells of the City of Glasgow

05/06/2017 17:56:54

Left: Donald and his new bride Lady Cecil Kerr, daughter of the 12th Marquess of Lothian, on their wedding day in 1974. Above: Three generations; (l-r) the late 26th Chief, Donald Cameron the Younger and the current 27th Chief outside Achnacarry.

to be rung when he enters, as thanks to Gentle Lochiel who prevented Jacobite soldiers, returning from their march to Derby in 1745, from robbing Glasgow merchants. ‘He was about to plant a great beech tree avenue leading up to the house, but after deciding to join the prince he stuck them in a trench and left with his men to fight for the Jacobite cause,’ says Lochiel. ‘Of course he never came back and so we have this rather higgledy piggledy row of 270 year old beech trees along the bank of the river.’ When disaster struck on the battlefield at Culloden, Gentle Lochiel was forced to

clan cameron main piece.indd 52

flee with the Prince to France where he died less than a year later, ‘of a broken heart.’ His youngest brother Archie was the last Jacobite to be executed, seven years after Culloden. The original Achnacarry House was destroyed by government troops in retribution raids after the doomed Battle of Culloden in 1746. In 1802 the 22nd chief began to rebuild the Cameron seat and appointed James Gillespie Graham, a prominent Scottish architect of the day, responsible for building much of Edinburgh’s New Town, Duns Castle in the Borders and several other Scots baronial style country piles.

05/06/2017 17:57:32

Image: The Clan Cameron Museum on the Achnacarry Estate, near Spean Bridge.

Achnacarry’s rugged location made it a perfect training ground for the newly formed British Commandos in 1940. This special forces unit was the brainchild of Winston Churchill and was created to perform ‘butcher and bolt’ attacks on the Germans. The house was requisitioned in 1942 and the family moved into a nearby cottage called Clunes. Over the next four years 25,000 young commandos were trained here from Britain, the US, France, the Netherlands, Norway, Czechoslovakia, Poland and Belgium, on seven week courses. ‘It was the perfect place to train a lot of people, out of sight from anybody,’ says Lochiel. Each new course would arrive at

clan cameron main piece.indd 53

Spean Bridge railway station, seven miles away, and conduct ‘a speed march in full battle kit to Achnacarry – the theory was that if they didn’t do it in a certain period of time then they were returned to unit, and that was their first test.’ ‘They did quite a lot of damage, including starting a fire with a cigarette butt that burned for three days and three nights and destroyed much of the Caledonian pine forest,’ says Lochiel. ‘They used live ammunition and left a lot of it lying around after the war. We found some two years ago and had to get a bomb squad up from Faslane naval base to blow it up.’ ‘But we love them really,’ smiles

05/06/2017 17:57:54

Image: Interior of Achnacarry Castle during its time as a commando training facility with murals painted by instructor Brian Mullin.

Lochiel. An instructor called Brian Mullin painted army themed murals on the walls of the house and an all important bar was installed in the drawing room. Nissen huts and canvas tents lined the fields in front of the house and come rain, snow or shine, young trainees would endure gruelling obstacle courses, forced marches and exercises on the estate. ‘There is a story that a young commando, during a very nasty battle in Europe, turned to his officer and said “this is almost as bad as Achnacarry!”’ Today visitors with connections to the commandos come from far and wide to see the house and visit the evocative memorial a few miles away, opened by Her Majesty the Queen Mother in 1954. A waterfall, called Eas Chia-aig, on the estate featured in the 1995 film Rob

clan cameron main piece.indd 54

Roy. One story the chief fondly recalls is of his father, the 26th chief, who went down to watch the filming of a scene in which Liam Neeson jumps off the bridge into the pool below. ‘My father approached an actor on horseback and asked ‘who do you play?’ to which the actor, who was in fact John Hurt, replied ‘Montrose.’ My father said ‘Ah, well it’s nice to meet you, I am your great-great-great-great grandson!’ John Hurt thought he was absolutely mad and walked away, but in fact my father was quite right as his mother was a daughter of the 5th Duke of Montrose.’ Lochiel’s father had a second brush with Hollywood several years later when a woman from California came to visit the Clan Cameron Museum next door to the house. ‘My father was always friendly to everyone and got chat-

05/06/2017 17:58:41

They did quite a lot of damage, including starting a fire with a cigarette butt that burned for three days and three nights ting to her – she said her son was a famous director, but of course my father hadn’t heard of any of his films,’ recalls Lochiel. A few months later an invitation arrived at Achnacarry to the premiere and after party of Titanic from the film’s director James Cameron, the son of the woman in the museum. ‘We went along and my daughter met Leonardo DiCaprio which made her very popular at school.’ Both the 25th and 26th chiefs were awarded an Order of the Thistle, the most ancient and highest order of chivalry in Scotland. Lochiel, like his father before him, is a Lord-Lieutenant of Inverness-Shire – a role which requires him to represent or accompany the roy-

al family when in the area. Clan Cameron’s past is steeped in romance and myth and has captured the imaginations and respect of many, both friends and foes. Government officer General James Wolfe described them as the ‘bravest clan of them all’ after Culloden and Lord Byron’s Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage recalls the Gentle Lochiel, ‘Donald’s fame rings in each clansman’s ears.’ The song, March of the Camerons, by Mary Maxwell Campbell, 1829, goes; There’s many a man of the Cameron clan That has followed his chief to the field He has sworn to support him or die by his side, for a Cameron can never yield…





VISIT THE CLAN WEBSITE Follow SCOTS Heritage Magazine for online updates

clan cameron main piece.indd 55

05/06/2017 18:02:53


Follow SCOTS Heritage Magazine for online updates

guide Bluffer’s


1 1

The nameClan Cameronname is thought to be derived from the Gaelic The name Cameron is thought to be derived ‘Cam-shron’ meaning crooked from the Gaelic ‘Cam-shron’ meaning crooked nose. nose.


bluffers guide for pdf.indd 56

06/06/2017 11:43:17

The first authentic chief was Donald Dubh, XI Chief, from whom all the later chiefs derived their Gaelic patronymic MacDhomhnuill Dhuibh (the son of dark-haired Donald) by which name the chief is known in Gaeldom. Since the XI Chief, the line of succession has been remarkable in that a son has always succeeded except for twice going to a grandson and twice to a brother. Picture shows the monument at The Battle of Harlaw at which Donald Dubh fought, July 24, 1411.


The original tribes that formed Clan Cameron were Cameron, MacGillonie, MacMartin, MacMillan and MacSorlie – hence the crest consisting of five arrows with the motto ‘Aonaibh Ri Cheile’ (“Unite”).

3 57

bluffers guide for pdf.indd 57

06/06/2017 11:43:00

The war-cry of the Camerons is “Chlanna nan con thigibh a so’s gheibh sibh feoil” – ‘sons of the hounds, come hither and get flesh’.

4 The clan’s land lies in Lochaber in the North West Highlands and used to extend from Glengarry in the north to Ballachulish in the south.



bluffers guide for pdf.indd 58

06/06/2017 11:43:39

The clan was in constant conflict with the Campbells, the Gordons and the Macintoshes (with whom they disputed over land ownership for 300 years). Picture shows Innis Chonnell Castle on Loch Awe, possibly the earliest seat of the Clan Campbell.


In the early 16th century, the XIII chief, Ewen was granted the barony of Lochiel and was the first chief to use the title ‘Cameron of Lochiel’.

7 59

bluffers guide for pdf.indd 59

06/06/2017 11:43:53


The seat of the chief, who is known as ‘Lochiel’, is Achnacarry which was built by the architect James Gillespie Graham in the early part of the 19th century to replace the house burnt by Cumberland’s forces in 1746.

The Cameron clan is noted for its adherence to the Royalist cause, most notably by Sir Ewen (XVII Chief) and Donald “the Gentle Lochiel” XIX Chief whose support for Bonnie Prince Charlie was crucial. His brother, Dr Archibald, was the last Jacobite executed - in 1753. Gold coins sent from France to support the Jacobites are still said to be buried on the shore of Loch Arkaig.

9 60

bluffers guide for pdf.indd 60

06/06/2017 11:44:11


In the last two centuries, the clan has been fortunate to have had farsighted chiefs who have contributed much to the Highlands. Donald, XXIV Chief was MP for Inverness-shire for 17 years, Sir Donald Walter, XXV chief raised three battalions for The Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders in World War I and was appointed a Knight of the Thistle and Lord Lieutenant of Inverness-shire. Sir Donald Hamish XXVI chief was also appointed KT and Lord Lieutenant, a post now held by the current chief, Donald, who is XXVII.



Heritage Magazine IS NOW INTERACTIVE!

As the official magazine of the Standing Council of Clan Chiefs, our mission is to reach as many Scots, members of the worldwide Scottish diaspora and fans of Scotland as possible. To fulfill this mission, Scots Heritage is now published in enhanced digital form.

This will also allow more people worldwide to read Scotland’s finest historical VIDEOS journal, and to do so at less cost.


With interactive features that will allow you to sample book chapters, hear music, see new video content and peruse a huge array of extra images, Scots Heritage – the leading Scottish history and heritage magazine – just got even better.


Tel: 01371 851868 Email:



bluffers guide for pdf.indd 61

06/06/2017 11:45:27



lands Heart


Achnacarry House Seat of the chiefs of Clan Cameron since around 1655, the original house was burned to the ground after the ‘45 Uprising. It was then rebuilt by the 22nd Lochiel, Donald Cameron who appointed well known Scottish architect James Gillespie Graham to design the Scots baronial style home.

heartlands for pdf.indd 62

06/06/2017 11:36:07



Only 20 miles from Achnacarry, in August 1745, Bonnie Prince Charlie waited for his supporters in Glenfinnan, on the banks of Loch Shiel. Several Macdonalds, MacDonnells and Macfies came forth to support the prince, however it wasn’t until 700 Camerons arrived from Achnacarry to meet them that he felt he had enough support to raise his standard. Today a monument marks the site.

The Clan Cameron Museum Found on the Achnacarry Estate not far from the main house, the museum details the history of the clan from the 14th century to present day and includes weaponry, clan artifacts and more recent items such as the current chief’s daughter’s bridesmaid dress from the Prince of Wales and Lady Diana Spencer’s wedding in 1981, and props from the film Titanic, directed by James Cameron.


heartlands for pdf.indd 63

06/06/2017 11:37:06

Tor Castle Now a ruin, this castle near Fort William was once home to the chiefs of Clan Cameron. In fact, it belonged to the Mackintoshes until it was seized by Clan Cameron who extended the castle in 1530, building a large tower and courtyard.


Bergues, France (near Dunkirk) After the Battle of Culloden, Gentle Lochiel fled to France with Bonnie Prince Charlie and was awarded command of the Régiment d’Albanie, the third Scottish regiment in the army of France. However, he died shortly after, in October 1748, in Bergues military hospital. Today a plaque commemorating Lochiel can be found on the site of the hospital, now offices, and another in the cemetery which was erected by the 1745 Association in 2008.


Eilean nan Craobh (an island in Loch Eil) Translated as ‘tree island,’ this small wooded islet in Loch Eil was once the location of a Cameron chief’s residence in the 16th and 17th centuries. In Walter Macfarlane’s 1767 Geographical Collections Relating to Scotland it is stated that in Loch Eil ‘there is little islands and the Laird and his Superiors of the country doeth dwell in one of them, having but timber houses builded thereintill.’

heartlands for pdf.indd 64

6 06/06/2017 11:37:19

7 The Commando Memorial, Spean Bridge Dedicated to the men of the British Commando Forces in WWII, and those who trained on the nearby Achnacarry Estate, this memorial was opened by Her Majesty the Queen Mother in 1952. Designed by sculptor Scott Sutherland it is among Scotland’s most recognisable and well regarded memorials and offers spectacular views to Ben Nevis and Aonach Mòr.

The Cameron Gallery at Tsarskoye Selo Charles Cameron was tasked with building a Classical colonnade at Catherine Palace, in which Catherine the Great could stroll and have philosophical discussion. Standing perpendicular to the east wing of the main palace, the Cameron Gallery, as it is now known, is a triumph of 18th century European design. Cameron also designed Roman baths at the palace, using Russian agate, jasper, malachite, lapis lazuli and alabaster.

heartlands for pdf.indd 65

8 06/06/2017 11:37:36


Pavlovsk Palace, Saint Petersburg In 1780 Catherine the Great enlisted the services of court architect Charles Cameron to build a summer palace for her son, Grand Duke Paul. After a somewhat turbulent career in England, Cameron was invited to Russia at the request of Catherine the Great, who had a great penchant for European styles. Cameron was also chief architect of Tsarskoye Selo and the nearby new town Sophia. Though he was born in London in 1745, Charles traced his descent from the Cameron’s of Lochiel.

Ben Nevis Britain’s highest peak, Ben Nevis, was once included in Cameron lands. When the Commando Basic Training Centre was set up only 18 miles from the mountain at Achnacarry House, the Ben acted as a final challenge for the young trainees before they qualified for the special services unit.



IS NOW INTERACTIVE! As the official magazine of the Standing Council of Clan Chiefs, our mission is to reach as many Scots, members of the worldwide Scottish diaspora and fans of Scotland as possible.

Heritage Magazine




heartlands for pdf.indd 66

To fulfill this mission, Scots Heritage is now published in enhanced digital form. This will also allow more people worldwide to read Scotland’s finest historical journal. With interactive features that allow you to sample book chapters, hear music, see new video content and peruse a huge array of extra images, Scots Heritage – the leading Scottish history and heritage magazine – just got even better. Tel: 01371 851868 Email:

06/06/2017 11:38:03


Image: Scot Minnie Dean was the first – and last – woman to be hung in New Zealand.

Minnie the monster



minnie baby farmer.indd 67

06/06/2017 12:11:57


he ad in New Zealand’s Southland Times on April 17, 1889 struck just the right tone: ‘WANTED, by a respectable married woman with no children – a baby to nurse, or one or two young children to bring up, or a baby to adopt. Thoroughly comfortable home in the country. Terms very moderate. Apply by letter addressed B.D. to office of this paper.’ For the desperate unmarried mothers or overstretched families who decided to take ‘B.D.’ up on her deceptively genteel offer as a solution to their apparent plight in a nosy puritanical world, it was to be a terrible mistake. They were about to deal with a woman (whose initials weren’t B.D.) as respectable as the only woman ever hanged in New Zealand, which she was to become. But it would take the authorities another six years to prove that

minnie baby farmer.indd 68

Image: When suspicious New Zealand police dug up Minnie Dean’s garden they found two recently buried children.


the mistreatment and subsequent death of some of her young charges was not accidental. She was doing it for money. Supposedly ‘destitute’, according to Lynley Hood in the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, Minnie Dean became a socalled ‘baby farmer’ at the age of 45, adopting children for ‘5 to 8 shillings a week [or] for lump sums of between £10 and £30 [£3,000 today]’. But since her farmer husband, Charles Dean, had begun raising pigs, were they really destitute or just doing it tough like everyone else? Even genuine poverty didn’t justify what happened next. Minnie was born Williamina McCulloch on 2 September 1844 in West Greenock, Renfrewshire, the fourth of

06/06/2017 12:12:18


Nothing was heard of Minnie from that moment until 1863 when, pregnant at 19 with Isabella, she knocked at the door of her mother’s sister’s house in southern New Zealand Apart from Minnie’s unlikely tale, given her age, that she was a widow who had arrived via Australia’s island state of Tasmania, little more is known of her movements since leaving Scotland. The one exception is the recent

eight daughters of Elizabeth Swan and her husband, John McCulloch, an engine-driver of 45 years’ standing with the Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway. When she was 13, Minnie’s mother died of cancer. Nothing was heard of Minnie from that moment until 1863 when, pregnant at 19 with Isabella, she knocked at the door of her mother’s sister’s house in southern New Zealand, with her first daughter, Ellen, aged three. The aunt, Granny Kelly (nee Christina Swan), from the village of Cardross – on the north side of the Firth of Clyde halfway between Dumbarton and Helensburgh – had not seen Minnie since she was three, when she herself had migrated to New Zealand with her family. Not long after joining other Scots in ‘Dunedin – dubbed locally “the Edinburgh of the South” ... [Christina’s husband, Dugald Niven] was killed by a falling tree,’ wrote Hood in Minnie Dean: Her Life & Crimes. A year or so later Christina married John Kelly and in 1856 founded the nearby Invercargill.

Right: Some of the telegrams that finally saw Minnie Dean caught, prosecuted and hung for the crime of murdering children. 69

minnie baby farmer.indd 69

06/06/2017 12:12:38

Image: Minnie took the money for looking after children, only to kill them.

ers listed. Was the baby’s father really a surgeon? Did she leave Scotland with a boyfriend or chaperone and was waylaid, at 15, on or after the voyage? Something else is possible. Try writing the name McPhu in sloping handwriting. It could have been copied (ee being mistaken for u) from a handwritten McPhee, an even more common name (one McPhee becoming Tasmania’s premier 60 years later). Was she dumped by an influential, perhaps married, settler? Even more oddly, Isabella’s own mar-

discovery of a record of a female child born on January 13, 1861 in Tasmania to a Wilhelmina McCulloch, the father shown in the official record as Frederick McFae, surgeon. With spelling often done phonetically, and the name appearing typed as McPhu on the St Andrews Presbyterian Church baptism list, unless she had invented the name, who was he? No Tasmanian doctor had such names, McLeay being the closest. If married, Minnie would have included her maiden name, as did nine of the 11 moth70

minnie baby farmer.indd 70

06/06/2017 12:12:58

nie’s mind, in 1884 she and her now bankrupt Charles were found covered in blood one night after an angry creditor attacked them in bed. In 1887 the destitute pair, along with Margaret, moved into an abandoned house, called ‘The Larches’, in Winton. It burnt down. Soon the ads started appearing. Six months later one of the adopted babies died; 16 months later another one. Despite having up to nine children under the age of three in the house, she wasn’t closed down. Instead, the deaths were explained away, the medical witness at the inquest blaming only ‘inadequate premises’. The police were suspicious and had her under surveillance but the law gave them no right to enter the Deans’ house. But when, in August 1893, the owner of a boarding-house in Christchurch told them that Minnie Dean had arrived with a baby, a detective did step in, writing in his report, ‘I believe this woman would have killed or abandoned this child before she got to Dunedin, if it had not been taken from her’. According to Hood, when a third child died in 1894, ‘she buried him in the garden to avoid…another inquest’. In May 1895 she ‘was seen boarding

riage certificate would later list her father’s name as Dr John Henry Proctor. Anyway, the respectability ruse worked and Minnie was soon working as a teacher. When Ellen and Isabella left home, Minnie adopted five-year-old Margaret Cameron. Two years later, in 1882, Ellen, her baby and her toddler were all found dead in Ellen’s well. Having a safe heavy lid when not in use, had it been a murder/suicide by a depressed mother, a terrible accident or something else? Whatever effect this had on Min-


I believe this woman would have killed or abandoned this child before she got to Dunedin, if it had not been taken from her 71

minnie baby farmer.indd 71

06/06/2017 12:13:17

a train carrying a baby and a hat-box, and disembarking carrying only the hat-box’. Taken by the police to The Larches, the baby’s mother, Jane Hornsby, who had given her granddaughter to her, ‘found clothing belonging to the child’ and Minnie was soon charged with murder. Police had found nothing along the Image: The laudanum MInnie used to kill railway line but on babies was a widely-used sedative. digging up her garden they unearthed the bodies of two recently buried babies, with hat-box and parcels but no Eva. one dead from an overdose of the opiate The judge said: ‘It seems to me that laudanum (a common children’s sedathe real honest issue is whether the active), and the skeleton of a four-yearcused is guilty of intentionally killing old boy. Charles was arrested too but the child or is innocent altogether,’ then found not guilty of murder. suggested that a verdict of manslaughThe New Zealand Supreme Court, on ter would be ‘a weak-kneed comproJune 18, 1895, heard how she had dismise’. posed of another baby on the way to Found guilty of murder, Minnie Dean picking up Eva Hornsby, the hat-box was sentenced to hang at Invercarproviding the means of disposal. gill Gaol on August 12. Minnie did not At Minnie Dean’s trial a number of speak during her trial but, truthfully or witnesses testified variously to seeing not, wrote a 49-page account of what her pick Dorothy Carter up on April had supposedly happened to all the chil30 at Bluff, return to Winton for two dren that had been put in her care over nights and leave with her again with an the six years between 1889 and 1895, empty hat-box. By the time she saying that there had been 28 children arrived at Clarendon Eva, Dorothy had altogether. disappeared and Minnie Dean’s Officially, it was known that six had hat-box appeared noticeably heavy, died, one had been reclaimed by its famDean finally arriving back at Winton 72

minnie baby farmer.indd 72

06/06/2017 12:13:34


While saying to the Sheriff “I am innocent,” her last words, “God, let me not suffer!” were perhaps the most telling of all about whose well-being was really closest to her heart well have disposed of them after they died due to illness or her neglect. Even if this had been true, such circumstances would not have gained her the slightest public sympathy. While saying to the Sheriff, ‘I am innocent,’ her last words, ‘God, let me not suffer!’ were perhaps the most telling of all about whose well-being was really closest to her heart.

ily, and five were found alive at The Larches the day she was arrested. To this day nothing is known of the fate of the others. While Dean herself insisted that seven had been secretly adopted, the police by now had tired of her explanations and assumed that they had all been murdered. One possibility no one considered at the time was that Minnie Dean may



Heritage Magazine IS NOW INTERACTIVE!

As the official magazine of the Standing Council of Clan Chiefs, our mission is to reach as many Scots, members of the worldwide Scottish diaspora and fans of Scotland as possible. To fulfill this mission, Scots Heritage is now published in enhanced digital form.

This will also allow more people worldwide to read Scotland’s finest historical VIDEOS journal, and to do so at less cost.


With interactive features that will allow you to sample book chapters, hear music, see new video content and peruse a huge array of extra images, Scots Heritage – the leading Scottish history and heritage magazine – just got even better.


Tel: 01371 851868 Email:



minnie baby farmer.indd 73

06/06/2017 12:14:04

ANCESTRY – JAY LENO Words Lauren Rafferty




genealogy.indd 74

06/06/2017 12:18:51


says. ‘She affected the kind of comedy I wanted to do. She had an ear for what was appropriate. Catherine ‘Cathy’ Muir Leno was sent over to America from Greenock, Scotland aged just 11 by her father after her mother left him for another man. Struggling with six kids, and being unable to find anyone to take her in, her father sent her to live with an older sister and work as a serving girl. On meeting Angelo Leno, she was forced to learn to cook Italian food before she could marry him, which Jay thinks is the reason she can’t cook Scottish food. ‘Scottish mums can’t cook. Scottish cuisine? I don’t think there’s any such thing. When you buy a Mars bar... they dump them in hot oil.’ Catherine married Angelo Leno on 30

nown as the King of Late Night and Jutting Jaw Jay, Jay Leno is best known for hosting The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Jay Leno Show. Famous for his square jaw and protruding chin, Leno is also well-known for his extensive automobile and motorbike collection. A celebrated talk show host, he received the Mark Twain Prize in 2014 and has also won two Primetime Emmy Awards. Born James Douglas Muir Leno, to an Italian father, Angelo, and a Scottish mother, he cites his mother as an influence on his comedic career. ‘She was always conscious of how the jokes would affect the people I was talking about, like she said, “What if you hurt President Clinton’s feelings?”‘ he

Below left: Leno as a young man. Below right: Leno’s Scottish mother Cathy married his Italian father Angelo after being sent from Greenock to America aged 11, after her own father was abandoned by his wife and struggled to bring up six children on his own.


genealogy.indd 75

06/06/2017 12:19:08

November 1935, the same date as her son and his wife Mavis many years later. She had her first son, Patrick, in 1940, who grew up to fight in the Vietnam War and become a graduate of Yale University. She had Jay ten years later in 1950, and raised both boys in Andover, Massachusetts. Patrick passed away in 2002 due to cancer, just like his mother, who passed in 1993 aged 82. Despite her son being in the limelight with stand-up comedy and hosting The Tonight Show, Catherine never liked being the centre of attention. ‘Scottish people are reserved, that’s why it’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno – not Starring Jay Leno,’ he says. ‘And even with that, my mother would say “Why do you have to have your name all over everything?”’ Neither Catherine nor Angelo understood Jay’s profession in comedy but they supported his performances, going to many, including one famous gig at New York’s Carnegie Hall. ‘So I’m on the stage, and I see these college kids laughing during my performance, and my mom is going “Shhh! Shhh!” I stop and go, “Ma, you don’t shush people at a comedy show! They’re supposed to laugh!” My mother was stunned.’

Left - Everett Collection/Alamy

So I’m on the stage, and I see these college kids laughing during my performance, and my mom is going ‘Shhh! Shhh!’ I stop and go, ‘Ma, you don’t shush people at a comedy show!’

genealogy.indd 76

But despite not understanding his chosen profession, Catherine was very proud of her son. ‘He used to disturb the class, but no one could get mad at him because everyone was laughing. It’s nice to know that they like him. I mean, this is your son and they like him.’ Jay Leno is one of the few comedians who is clean and doesn’t make a fuss about his status as a comedian. He is still a humble man who only uses his monAbove left: Leno on stage at the Carnegie Hall in New York. Above right: Leno’s older brother Patrick fought in Vietnam. 76

06/06/2017 12:19:30

Bill McKelvie/Shutterstock

Leno visited Scotland with his mother and father, bringing her back for the first time since she was 11 years old

Image: Jay Leno’s mother, Catherine Muir left her home town of Greenock for America when she was only eleven years old.


genealogy.indd 77

ey from his gigs, rather than his income from The Tonight Show. His wife Mavis Leno knows how dedicated her husband is to his work. ‘He loves doing his job better than anything else he does,’ she says. ‘It’s in his family. The whole male side of his family is like that.’ Leno never had a bad word to say about his mother and even if he used her in his jokes, she never got mad. ‘When he’s talking about me then I know he’s thinking about me, so it’s fine.’ Leno is also known for his automobile and motorbike collection which is held in two large bunkers at Burbank Airport. He has 150 cars and 92 bikes in his collection and all are drivable. Not only does Leno have family ties to Scotland, he also

06/06/2017 12:19:47

Leno never had a bad word to say about his mother and even if he used her in his jokes. she never got mad. “When he’s talking about me then I know he’s thinking about me, so it’s fine”

argued with the judge and the judge said “Fine, fine you’re a citizen, get out! Get out! So sixty years go by and my mother is afraid that the judge put a note somewhere that takes it away.’ Since leaving The Tonight Show Leno spends most of his time with his wife and his cars, he still tours, doing comedy shows, but has not been back to Scotland since taking his mother before she died. But that does not mean he will not be back in years to come; indeed he has pleged to get more involved in Scottish culture. His mother would be proud of him.

drove a one-of-a-kind 1951 Ecurie Ecosse XK120 roadster by Jaguar, during the Mille Maglia in 2014. Jay bought his parents a pearl white Italian Cadillac, which his mother hated. She would tell everyone they would meet on the road that ‘we’re not really Cadillac people – our son got us this.’ According to Leno, in her very Scottish way the self-effacing Catherine was so embarrassed by the car that she would always lie beneath the line of sight, under the dashboard, not wanting to be seen by other people. Leno visited Scotland with his mother and father, bringing her back for the first time since leaving when she was 11 years-old. She was apprehensive at first about leaving America as she wasn’t sure she would be let back in to the country. ‘It turns out my father took her down to get her citizenship papers,’ laughs Leno. ‘To become a citizen if you had more than five questions wrong you didn’t pass so my mother got five questions wrong and the sixth question was ‘What is the US Constitution?’ and my mother said “It’s a boat”. And the judge said “Well, you failed” and so my father

Catherine was born here in Greenock 78

genealogy.indd 78

06/06/2017 12:20:05


Left: The south face of Broomhall designed in 1796 by Thomas Harrison.


Words Malcolm MacGregor




he name Broomhall comes from Broom Haugh. Broom is a type of plant, whilst Haugh is a meadow. The house was built in 1702 on a fine meadow in a commanding position overlooking the Firth of Forth, near Dunfermline. Unlike many other significant buildings in

big hoose.indd 79


06/06/2017 12:29:53

Scotland there was no ancient fortification on which to build the house. The 3rd Earl of Kincardine commissioned a four storey house, built to plans laid out by Sir William Bruce. In 1766 the house was converted into a neo-Palladian mansion by John Adam, similar to Dumfries House in Ayrshire. The

house was rebuilt again some thirty years later in the style of the Greek Revival for the 7th Earl of Elgin by Thomas Harrison. Finally in 1865, the portico on the north side was added as the last act in the building of this great house. It is the visual demonstration of the contribution of the Bruces to European and

Image: Charles, Lord Bruce at the north entrance to Broomhall.


big hoose.indd 80

06/06/2017 12:30:09

Image: The drawing room houses a grand piano.

western civilisation. But where did the Bruces come from and what was their role at the forefront of many of the events in Scottish, and British history? How did this family come to be so heavily involved in the affairs of state for nearly 1000 years? As with many Anglo-Norman families it began in 1066 when Robert de Brus crossed the English Channel with William the Conqueror. His descendants acquired lands in the South West of Scotland, becoming Lords of Annandale. Robert the Bruce’s long journey to the throne of Scotland took him through

Image: James 8th Earl of Elgin, Governer General of Canada and Viceroy of Inida. 81

big hoose.indd 81

06/06/2017 12:30:29

Image: Tartan jacket from 1760, made for James Bruce of Kinnaird.

Image: Thomas, 7th Earl of Elgin in uniform of Scots Fusilier Guards.

southern Scotland and Northern Ireland. Having killed his main rival, John ,’the red’ Comyn in Dumfries in 1306, he was crowned king. He led his troops into battle as the King of Scots at Bannockburn, routing King Edward II of England, and securing his position on the throne. The great symbol of Robert the Bruce is his two handed sword. This sword was given by his son David II to Thomas Bruce of Clackmannan, a forefather of the present chief. Since that time the sword has been continuously in the possession of the chief ’s family. The history of Scotland led to the Union of the Crowns in 1603. Somewhat ironically, Sir Edward Bruce was the last

big hoose.indd 82


Scottish Ambassador at the Court of St. James. He negotiated James VI of Scotland’s accession to the throne of England on the death of Queen Elizabeth. He was rewarded with the title ‘Lord Kinloss’, a location near Elgin in the north east of Scotland. Sir Edward’s son was created 1st Earl of Elgin, with the Earldom passing to the Earls of Kincardine in 1647, thus uniting the two titles. Like many of the great families of Scotland, the Bruces became mixed up in the Jacobite uprisings. But after the ill-fated 1745 uprising they embraced the new future as part of the United Kingdom, and expanding British Empire. From that time on, the Earls of Elgin

06/06/2017 12:30:43

were very much to the fore in Scottish and British life. The 7th Earl of Elgin was the famous diplomat and ambassador to the Ottoman Empire in Istanbul in 1799, having served in the 3rd Regiment of Foot Guards. He was heavily involved in curtailing the activities of Napoleon Bonaparte in the Middle East, negotiating alliances with the Turks. He was such a thorn for Napoleon that he had him kidnapped and held in the Pyrenees until his wife, the Countess, negotiated his release. It was this earl who secured the antiquities at the Parthenon in Athens for the British Museum, which bear his name ‘The Elgin Marbles’. He was very much part of what came to be known as the Scottish Enlightenment, supporting Greek style buildings in Edinburgh such as that on Carlton Hill. Hence Edinburgh’s nickname at the time as ‘Athens of the North”. His son, the 8th Earl of Elgin, was very much in the same mould. He was Governor of Jamaica and Governor-General of Canada, as well as being sent on delicate missions to the Emperors of China and Japan. These missions resulted in the building of ships on the Clyde and Tyneside for the Japanese Navy. This in turn contributed to the defeat of the Russian Navy at the battle of Tsushima, in 1905, which heralded the rise of Imperial Japan, and the beginning of the end for Tsar Nicholas II. The 9th Earl was active in local pol-

big hoose.indd 83

itics as Chairman of the Scottish Liberal Party. But his big moment came in 1895, when he was appointed Viceroy of India. He was persuaded to take on the job by Lord Rosebery during a long walk over Arthur’s Seat in Edinburgh. He was known as the ‘walking Viceroy’, as he was always on his feet. He was responsible for the extensive railway building programme in India. The Durand Line, which separated Afghanistan from India, cutting through the tribal areas of

Unlike many other significant buildings in Scotland there was no ancient fortification on which to build the house


the North West Frontier, was conceived by him. Further appointments included the post of secretary of state for the colonies. Back home he headed a royal commission into the effects of pollution on salmon, and he was invited by the philanthropist Andrew Carnegie to chair his Scottish Universities Fund, enabling working class Scots to obtain university degrees. The 10th Earl was a public spirited individual who convened the Scottish Council for Development and Industry, meeting regularly at Broomhall. He also chaired the last Empire exhibition at Bel-

06/06/2017 12:30:56

Image: The Arms of King George III.

and wounded in Normandy, he is perhaps one of the last of what Americans call the greatest generation. Like his father, he took a great interest in the clan network, organising the first international gathering at Meadowbank in Edinburgh in 1977. In the character of his

lahouston Park in Glasgow, which attracted over 11 million people. Significantly he was also the first convenor of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs. His son, the 11th Earl, and 37th chief, has continued in the same vein. Having served in the Scots Guards, 84

big hoose.indd 84

06/06/2017 12:31:09

Image: China ornaments adorn the library.

as Viceroys and Governors-General during which their decisions had far reaching consequences. Kinsmen have been military officers and explorers, such as James Bruce of Kinnaird who discovered the source of the Blue Nile in 1770. On the cultural side the Bruces were enthusiastic supporters of the Enlightenment, the arts and architecture. There does not seem to be an aspect of Scottish life that they have not touched; and Scotland is all the better for it.

forebears, he has journeyed constantly to Canada where he is honorary Colonel of the Elgin Regiment. His main aim as chief has been to put the needs of the diaspora at the forefront of his chiefship. This family, at the head of the Bruce name, came to prominence during the Scottish Wars of Independence securing the throne of Scotland. By a coincidence, the family then had a hand in the union of crowns between England and Scotland some 300 years later and, despite being Jacobites, embraced the British Empire 85

big hoose.indd 85

06/06/2017 12:31:25


FAMILY HISTORY Broomhall houses a privately curated museum which can be visited by specal arrangement. Visitors can enjoy a cycle of exhibitions documenting family life and the travels of the Bruce family.

HOME IS WHERE THE HEART IS Broomhall has been a family home for over 300 years and continues to be lived in by the Bruce family. BABY BOOMERS Thirteen generations of Bruces and over 70 children have been born and brought up in Broomhall House. A CHIEFLY HOUSE The current owner of Broomhall House is Andrew Bruce, 37th Chief of the Name of Bruce, 11th Earl of Elgin and 15th Earl of Kincardine.

ARTEFACTS The dining room walls are hung with 16th and 17th century portraits and the room is dominated by a vast mantelpiece made from the marriage bed of James VI and his bride, Queen Anne of Denmark and reassembled specially for Broomhall House.

STROLL AROUND THE GROUNDS Broomhall sits in 2,500 acres of private working estate.

BROOMHALL HOUSE Charlestown, Dunfermline KY11 3DU


Follow SCOTS Heritage Magazine for online updates 86

big hoose.indd 86

06/06/2017 12:31:45


Image: Prince Charles Edward Stuart was a stylish young man.


buckles Bonny

Words Hermione Lister-Kaye


Untitled-3 87

06/06/2017 12:35:20


rom a collection bequeathed to Stirling University by Basil Mackenzie, 2nd Baron Amulree in 1983, these shoe buckles are thought to have belonged to Prince Charles Edward Stuart, or Bonnie Prince Charlie as he is romantically known. Having grown up in Rome by the grace of Pope Clement XI, the young prince had all the style and pomp of a wealthy heir to no throne. He was famed for his extravagant dress and was painted several times during his lifetime wearing the finest garments and jewels from Paris. A portrait by John Pettie, painted more than 100 years after the failed 1745 Rebellion to reclaim the Scottish throne for his father, The Old Pretender, and the Stuart cause, depicts the prince wearing buckles remarkably similar to these. The buckles are made from ‘paste’, a transparent flint glass made to replicate diamond, and are contained in a wooden box with a small piece of paper providing the details of their provenance. The paper, written by Christie’s auction house in 1919, recounts the line of ownership, starting with Charles Edward Stuart and passing down through family members before being sold at Christie’s. A later note on the paper records the buckles being sold again at Sotheby’s auction house in 1945. Could the Bonnie Prince have worn these very buckles when he set first foot on Scottish soil on the Isle of Eriskay, 23 July 1745? Image: In this portrait by John Pettie, the Bonnie Prince Charlie sports an almost identical pair of shoe buckles. 88

Untitled-3 88

06/06/2017 12:36:12

The young prince had all the style and pomp of a wealthy heir to no throne

Image: The buckles are kept in a box that also contains their provenance. 89

Untitled-3 89

06/06/2017 12:36:30


Image: The Kolkata Scottish Heritage Trust aims to restore the long-neglected cemetery. Words Judy Vickers

duty Death


Untitled-4 90

06/06/2017 12:39:51

Top and below: The Scottish cemetery in Kolkata is the final resting place of over 4,000 Scots.


he names on the gravestones are quite clearly Scottish – Macdonald, Massie, Johnston, Cameron, Fraser, Campbell. But it’s the causes of death and occupations which give away the fact that this isn’t a cemetery in rural Aberdeenshire or urban Edinburgh; malaria and cholera feature often for the tea planters, missionaries and merchants who rest here. It was 70 years ago this August that the British Raj in India officially came to an end. But more than two generations on, there are curious legacies of British colonial rule, none more so than the 197-year-old Scottish Cemetery in Kolkata, formerly Calcutta. Here, more than 4,000 Scots – and

a few assorted other non-conformists, such as Welsh Presbyterians and English Pentecostals – lie buried thousands of miles from their homeland in a four-acre patch of tranquillity which has somehow managed to avoid the bulldozers in one of the most congested cities on Earth. Now it is being given a new lease of life by a man with his own connection to the Raj. Charles Bruce’s great-greatgrandfather, the 8th Earl of Elgin, was 91

Untitled-4 91

06/06/2017 12:40:12

Image: Calcutta in the Bengal Presidency of British India, 1840.

I grew up in a house stuffed with Indian memorabilia, so there is a strong family connection the drainage and paths. Funded by the British Association of Cemeteries in South Asia, this work should be completed this year so the team can turn its attention to restoring and conserving the ruined monuments. Work has already been carried out recording all the names of those buried and there is an ongoing project with the Friends of Dundee City Archives to uncover more details of those who died. But the other half looks to the future. The cemetery is located in a poor, mostly Muslim area of the city

Viceroy of India from 1862 to 1863 and his son, the 9th Earl, held the same position from 1894 to 1899. ‘It was the only family which had a father and son in the same position, a bit like Steptoe and Son,’ he chuckles. ‘I grew up in a house stuffed with Indian memorabilia, so there is a strong family connection.’ Now he heads the Kolkata Scottish Heritage Trust, which aims to restore the long-neglected cemetery. Part of that mission looks to the past; the last three years have been spent removing tonnes of debris by hand, and restoring 92

Untitled-4 92

06/06/2017 12:40:27

Image: First introduced to India by the British in an attempt to break the Chinese monopoly on tea, India is now one of the largest tea producers in the world.

the headquarters of many British enterprises. ‘The Scottish community in India was entirely disproportionate to the population in the British Isles and the Scots dominated every field of endeavour,’ explains Lord Bruce. Shipping lines, railway rolling stock, tea plantations, the jute industry, you name it, the Scots were here, working and living – and dying. ‘There are around three million Europeans buried in south Asia,’ says Lord Bruce. ‘There were many cemeteries in Kolkata which have disappeared. Ours was particularly set up by Scottish Presbyterians because they didn’t want to pay the extortionate burial fees charged by the Anglicans.’ There are more than 4,000 burials recorded in the cemetery, which operated until 1940, and around 1,200 memorials. ‘The people buried here encompass the entire Scottish community,’ says Lord Bruce. ‘There are people who were in positions of authority, they owned important businesses or they had family who were involved in the British Raj for generations. There are people who were on their way to India and died at sea.’ Fleshing out the details back

The Scots dominated every field of endeavour – shipping lines, railway rolling stock, tea plantations, jute... and the trust holds classes – drawing for children, hygiene and health for women, meetings for men – to engage the community and give them links to a place with which they have no family or religious ties. ‘We have deliberately gone out to court a connection with that community. We want to recruit people to tend the site once it’s restored to its finished state, tend it and work as a guide,’ says Lord Bruce. The cemetery was started in 1820, at a time when Calcutta was the capital of British India and home to

Untitled-4 93


06/06/2017 12:40:39

Image: Restoring the 197-year-old Scottish cemetery is a painstaking process.

The records of his estate show he left his parents the equivalent of more than half a million pounds in today’s money. ‘If only he had drunk more tonic with his gin, the quinine might have protected him more from malaria,’ says Flett dryly. But with the disappearance of the Raj, the cemetery slowly fell into a state of disrepair. ‘Most of the damage to the site has been caused by the roots of plants, bananas trees are the worst,’ says Lord Bruce. ‘The jungle was 30 or 40ft high. And the root system got underground into the broken structures so many of the brick vaults have collapsed underground and the ornate memorials on the surface have suffered damage as a consequence. We have

in Scotland are Iain Flett and Iain McIntosh of the Friends of Dundee City Archives, using the records held by the sheriff ’s court on winding up estates. Dundee dominated the jute industry in the 19th century but towards the end of that century, more efficient mill complexes were established nearer the raw product, undercutting the Scottish factories. Dundonians, with their jute expertise, were now recruited to run these Indian enterprises. With jobs disappearing in Scotland, many flocked east and it’s easy to see why. Take the example of William Shafto, a humble clerk with the Barnagore Jute Factory who died aged 38 from malarial fever in 1898 and was buried in the Scots cemetery. 94

Untitled-4 94

06/06/2017 12:41:22

It will become a rare open space and provide shade and tranquillity, a place where noise melts away assembled piles and piles of fragments. It’s a painstaking process piecing everything back together.’ Around 30 people work on the site and the trustees – most of whom have a personal connection to India – fundraise to provide the £25,000 annually to keep efforts going. Since 2012, Dr Neeta Das has been running the project on the ground. ‘She is one of the outstanding conservation architects of her generation and one of only a handful working in Kolkata,’ says Lord Bruce. ‘We are very fortunate to have been able to secure an architect of her calibre to run such a complex and technically challenging project.’ Even finding stonemasons to complete the work has been a challenge, so the trust has started its own masonry workshops. But in one sense the Scots cemetery is lucky – it survived. ‘The Scots cemetery occupies an incredibly valuable piece of land in a city which has problems of congestion and poor health. There

are officially 14 million inhabitants, although there may be as many as 20 million, and it’s growing so fast. We know that conservation of building heritage in a city which has so many other challenges isn’t going to be a high priority,’ says Lord Bruce. ‘But we do have a lot of support in the city and there is a sense that it is a project which brings benefits. Ultimately when it’s restored, it will become a rare open space and provide shade and tranquillity, a place where the noise of the city just melts away all around you.’

Image: With work in Scotland hard to come by, many Scots came to India to work on tea plantations. 95

Untitled-4 95

06/06/2017 12:41:38

TRADITIONAL ARTISANS Words Abie Dobie Images Angus Blackburn



Image: Traditional plasterer John Grandison in his studio in Peebles. 96

Untitled-5 96

06/06/2017 12:44:16

Almost nothing has changed in the workshop since it first opened in 1876


ohn Grandison is the fourth generation of the Grandison family to have become a plasterer, specialising in designing and restoring ornate plasterwork. Standing in his Peebles studio surrounded by intricate lime and plaster of Paris cornicing, you feel transported back through history, the process and materials almost entirely unchanged from past to present. John’s father was inspired to open the workshop to visitors – the collection of over 2,000 moulds, friezes, and tools provide a rich tapestry of reference for those wishing to learn about the craft. The team sit comfortably within the heart of the workshop, hard at work restoring ceilings and cornicing for clients, most often for stately homes, theatres and churches. When Blair Castle suffered a ceiling collapse, Grandison and his team were commissioned to restore the dining room plasterwork, whislt still being on show to vistors. Their high level of historical accuracy is achieved by continuing the same practices as previous generations, ‘almost nothing has changed in the workshop, since we started in 1876,’ he says. Only the materials have changed, with a shift from gelatine to silicone in order to maintain definition in their casts. The effect of place is also an important component, as Grandison describes when I ask more about the techniques used to create the moulds hanging around us. ‘We would call them originals, what would happen in the olden days, in this area most of the moulding was done in clay. If it was a timber carving area, it would all be timber hanging up. But by modelling it in clay, what happened once they’d taken the first plaster copy or the original as it was called and they were happy with it, they threw the clay back in the clay bin...What we’ve got hanging up there are predominantly the plaster originals, the first ones.’ Grandison is not only following the family mould, his expertise also means preserving and protecting history for future generations to enjoy. 97

Untitled-5 97

06/06/2017 12:44:30


Destroyed Destroyers


Image: HMS Opal at full speed. She and sister ship HMS Narborough both sank in a gale driven snowstorm on the night of 12th January 1918. 98

Untitled-6 98

06/06/2017 12:48:23


he midwinter sun had already set when the two destroyers, HMS Opal and HMS Narborough, sailed from the security of Scapa Flow through the boom defence nets and out into the North Sea. It was 16:00 on Saturday 12th January 1918. The destroyers had orders to rendezvous with the cruiser HMS Boadicea to carry out a ‘Dark Night Patrol’ to the east of the Orkney Islands. These patrols took place on moonless nights to prevent German minelayers from sowing a deadly string of mines near the

Untitled-6 99

Image: HMS Opal on the slipway at Sunderland 1915. Photo from Tyne and Wear Archives & Museum.


entrance of Scapa Flow. By 17:45 the wind was raging and a snowstorm engulfed the ships. Huge waves lashed the destroyers mercilessly. Visibility was almost zero. At 18:30 the cruiser ordered the destroyers to return to base, as they were unable to keep up with the larger vessel. The Opal took the lead, using a searchlight as a stern light to keep visual contact with the Narborough.

06/06/2017 12:48:36

At his gun post on the upper deck, Able Seaman William Sissons could hear the crewmember who manned the sounding machines shouting out the water depth of 33 fathoms. Then he felt the collision, and over the screaming wind came the terrifying grating as the ship ran aground on the island of South Ronaldsay. The Opal’s crew immediately threw her engines into reverse, but it was no use. She was stuck fast. They gave three blasts on the ship’s siren as a warning to the Narborough to turn away. The Narborough responded, repeating the signal, but the warning had come too late. Sissons watched her strike the rocks, turning over and breaking up

Image: Able Seaman William Sissons, the sole survivor of the tragedy.

as she sank in deeper water. An incomplete message, ‘Have run aground’ was received in Scapa Flow at 21:21, then nothing more from either ship. Though the warning sirens were heard by local people inside their houses, the blizzard was so severe that it would have been suicide to venture out to investigate. The situation was hopeless. When the order to abandon ship came, Sissons cut his way into a rack of lifebelts, distributing them to the men who sat on a Carly raft between two of the funnels as the sea crashed over the

Then he felt the collision, and over the screaming wind came the terrifying grating as the ship ran aground on the island of South Ronaldsay

Above: HMS Opal. Right: Lieutenant Edmond Bowly, HMS Narborough’s Captain. 100

Untitled-6 100

06/06/2017 12:48:52

Image: Memorial plaque on South Ronaldsay overlooking the site of the 1918 double destroyer tragedy.

was breaking in two. Sissons could see the cliffs towering over him, about 100 yards away. He tried to swim through the surging, oily waves but, suffering from exhaustion and cold, he was unable to climb onto the rocks. He lost consciousness, and woke later to find himself lying on a rock, covered with snow. He tried to climb up the cliff and had nearly reached the top when his numbed hands lost their grip and he tumbled backwards. Sissons was desperate and in shock, but still had the wherewithal to cobble some wooden wreckage together, creating a makeshift shelter for

stern, filling the ship with water. Sissons was knocked down by a wave. When he pulled himself to his feet he saw that the Carly raft and all the men on it had been swept away. Horror-stricken, shaking with the piercing cold, Sissons slipped his lifebelt on and clambered up the amidships funnel, landing on the grating inside to huddle with another four or five men who were sheltering there. Water spilled over the funnels, causing the fore and aft structures to crash into the sea. Twenty minutes later the amidships funnel also fell, pitching Sissons into the icy water. The doomed destroyer 101

Untitled-6 101

06/06/2017 12:49:07

The disaster seems to have been caused by HMS Opal’s newly appointed captain who, with no experience of the area, may have turned west too soon himself on a ledge above the sea. Back in Scapa Flow concerns for the ships were mounting, but the blizzard was so intense that a rescue party couldn’t leave until the following morning. Small vessels made a search around the eastern coast of Orkney at first light on Sunday 13th January. All they found were bits of floating wreckage, including an officer’s washstand marked ‘Sub-Lieutenant NARBOROUGH’. From the place where he was sheltering, Sissons could see the searching

Untitled-6 102

Above and Inset: Ernest Stanley Cubiss of HMS Opal and his fiancée Florence Ethel Foster: the ring she gave him in 1916 was found in July 2007 by scuba diver Peter Brady.

ships but he couldn’t get their attention. He was forced to spend a second night on the cliff ledge, maintaining life with raw shellfish and snow. It wasn’t until the following morning that he was at last spotted by a commandeered fishing boat. He was in remarkably good condition for a man who had been exposed to the elements for thirty-six hours, but spent some time recovering in the hospital ship HMHS China. Able Seaman William Sissons was the only survivor from the two ships; 188 of his fellow crewmen had perished. The disaster seems to have been caused by HMS Opal’s newly appointed 102

06/06/2017 12:49:24

been stripped. Little now remains to be seen. But in July of 2007 a sports diver was visiting the site of the wrecks when he saw something glinting between the rocks. It was a gold ring, engraved inside, ‘To Stanley from Flo – 6th March 1916’. Further investigation uncovered the story. It was an engagement ring given to Ernest Stanley Cubiss of HMS Opal by his fiancée, Florence Ethel Foster. The couple had married in June 1917. The ring, along with other military artefacts relating to Cubiss, including a map of the Orkney Islands consulted by Flo in the 1920s when she made the pilgrimage to see where her husband died, were donated by the Cubiss family to the Scapa Flow Visitor Centre and Museum on the Orkney island of Hoy. These poignant artefacts are now on display at the Museum, along with a lifebelt from the Opal, serving as tragic reminders of these nearly-forgotten wrecks. The lost ships, Opal and Narborough are a mere footnote in naval history, but in Orkney their story is still remembered.

Above: Scroll from King George V commemorating those who died in the war and bearing Stanley’s name. Above right: Three medals posthumously awarded to Ernest Stanley Cubiss.

captain who, with no experience of the area, may have made a miscalculation in navigation, turning west too soon. Local people and troops reported seeing the Opal’s torpedoes rolling around inside her wreckage. The torpedoes later exploded, sending debris flying over the cliff-top. It was said that local farmers who gathered seaweed for fertiliser from Windwick Bay, where the wrecks lay, had to stop this practise because of the human remains that washed up and mixed with the seaweed. The wrecks were sold for scrap in 1936, with anything of value having 103

Untitled-6 103

06/06/2017 12:49:39




How many litres of whisky is stored in a gorda cask?



What nickname was given to a difficult stretch of path leading from Kinlochleven to Glencoe by soldiers building the road under General Wade’s order? 104

Untitled-7 104

06/06/2017 13:09:14


Where is northern Europe’s best-preserved Neolithic village?


Which is the largest monument dedicated to a literary figure in the world?


What does the ‘Clootie’ refer to in the Scottish dish ‘Clootie Dumpling’?


Untitled-7 105

06/06/2017 13:09:36


The Great Tapestry of Scotland is made up of how many hand stitched panels?


Which famous Scottish Field Marshall in the British Army was nicknamed the Butcher of the Somme?


Hollywood director Steven Spielberg once said that ‘There are seven genuine movie stars in the world today’, who was the Scottish one?


Untitled-7 106

06/06/2017 13:09:55





A gorda holds 700 litres of whisky. A huge cask, gordas are most often used for marrying different whiskies, but are occasionally used to mature whisky.

160. The tapestry, designed by artist Andrew Crummy and completed in 2013, depicts the history of Scotland from 8500 BC to the present day.

The Devil’s Staircase, which crosses the Aonach Eagach ridge, 6km east of Meall Dearg, is notoriously difficult to cross and has claimed many lives.

Field Marshall Douglas Haig, 1st Earl Haig, commanded the British Expeditionary Force on the Western Front in WWI and came to be known as ‘Butcher Haig’ due to the 2 million British casualties endured under his command at the Battle of the Somme.


The Neolithic village of Skara Brae, beside the Bay of Skaill in Orkney, was discovered in the winter of 1850. Wild storms ripped the grass away and exposed the remnants of an ancient stone settlement. The discovery proved to be the best-preserved Neolithic village in northern Europe and remains so today.


Sean Connery, famous for playing James Bond, is the only actor to win an Oscar for the spy role.



A Clootie is a strip or piece of cloth – it was traditional to put the ingredients into a cloth before boiling it in water.

The Scott Monument in Edinburgh celebrates Scottish author Sir Walter Scott. It stands 200ft and six inches tall, and the highest platform is reached by 287 steps.


Untitled-7 107

06/06/2017 13:10:12


Voice Finding the



elebrating and preserving Scotland’s rich heritage comes in many innovative forms, but a small band of broadcasters are punching above their weight to get noticed. An online internet radio programme that celebrates the Scots language and culture, and which is presented in Scots, was nominated for a top international award in the Celtic Media Festival, alongside some of the world’s biggest radio stations. ‘Scots Radio’ is presented and produced by well known broadcaster Frieda Morrison and features Scots ‘fae Shetland tae the Borders and athin in atween’. Set up in December 2013 the programme attracts thousands of listeners, from local Scots to

Image: Well-known broadcaster Frieda Morrison presents and produces Scots Radio. 108

Untitled-8 108

06/06/2017 13:16:01

Left: Acclaimed traditional singer-songwriter Steve Byrne is a regular on Scots Radio. Below: So too is the much-loved Richard Werner.

glers, the slave trade in Scotland, the thinker’s heart, hidden Aberdeen and the soldiers of Killiecrankie. Scots Radio stands out because it talks in the language of Scotland, rather than about the language of Scotland. Language, community and culture are always intertwined. Heritage is a subtle interplay of the land, the people, the language, music, culture and history. If

When I went to school you were punished if you spoke in the language of your family

the dedicated Scottish diaspora, with its special blend of discussions, events and music. In the nominated episode, the programme features the Book of the Howlat, which is based on a 15th century poem that was launched at Darnaway Castle in Morayshire, the Scottish Storytelling Festival, and finishes at the Food Festival in Edinburgh. Other episodes feature stories from the vast well of Scottish Heritage - the whisky smug-

you remove or undermine one element, it has a knock-on ripple effect across the board. Scots Radio is making small but significant steps to make talking in Scots a talking point. Whilst most media outlets publish and broadcast in English or Gaelic, Scots Radio is one place where local accents and dialects are used with an ease that’s natural and engaging. Frieda believes that this is one of the most important aspects of Scots Radio and, for many people, one that evokes personal memories. ‘When I went to school you were punished if you spoke in the language of your family and failed to speak “properly”,’ she says. ‘The message 109

Untitled-8 109

06/06/2017 13:16:17

Image: Guests from Episode 34 (l-r): Kyle Steel, Mairi McFadyen, Rachael Gillan.

coming through was that the way my parents spoke, the language of my grandparents, the accents of the people I loved, was no longer valid or particularly welcome. This was quite a difficult and mixed message to deal with, especially for a child. ‘Then when I progressed to presenting work in the media I had to learn “received pronunciation” – this was 110

Untitled-8 110

06/06/2017 13:16:47

by the hand on long walks along the Buchan coastline. ‘As I couldn’t see all I can remember is his voice, his stories and local tales,’ she says. ‘Listening to him as he described everything that I couldn’t see, comforted, entertained and became a part of me. Local knowledge, folklore and history are worth preserving, but the way it’s expressed, the language in which these captivating tales are woven, is worth preserving too. Attitudes to using the Scots language have changed and I feel our nomination recognises that change.’ It’s quickly apparent that Scots Radio isn’t just a job, it’s a labour of love for the dedicated work of a handful of impassioned individuals. Recorded in Edinburgh at B&B studios by Richard Werner, whose banter and personality have become a much-loved part of the programme, it also features guest appearances from folklorist and musician Steve Byrne. Nominated in the Celtic Media Festival’s ‘magazine category’, this small team is up against some global brands

done in special training classes in London at that time. It all pointed to the notion that Scots was not acceptable. But gradually BBC Scotland changed its attitude to local accents.’ When she was eight years old, Frieda suffered a head injury and experienced temporary blindness due to having bandages around her head and eyes. Her grandfather often took care of her whilst she was off school, taking her

Attitudes to using the Scots language have changed and I feel our nomination recognises that change 111

Untitled-8 111

06/06/2017 13:16:48

Scots Radio remains the only place in the media where Scots can be heard regularly, in all its dialect and regional varieties land. As Kenneth Fowler, the director of and household names, which is a stagcommunications at Creative Scotland, gering feat in itself. The other finalists says: ‘We are delighted that Scots Radio include Scotland’s BBC Radio nan Gaidhas been nominated in the Celtic Meheal and Northern Ireland’s BBC Radio dia awards. As we state in Ulster, as well as Ireland’s Image: Frieda with Kevin our Scots Language Policy, RTE Raidió na GaeltachMcKidd, who plays “we tak tent that the Scots ta and BBC Wales, all asthe minister in the film language is an innermaist piring to be awarded the version of Lewis Grassic pairt o Scotlan’s identiFestival’s ‘Torc’ Award for Gibbon’s Sunset Song. tie an culture” and we will Excellence. “forder oor wurk tae heize Scots Radio has a lot of up an develop Scots language”. Our people rooting for it, not least The Scots funding support for Scots Radio forms Language Centre and Creative Scot-


Untitled-8 112

06/06/2017 13:17:15

Scots Radio continues to be an oral-aural celebration of the Scots tongue and as such is both a delight and a necessity an important part of that work and it’s great that their role in championing Scots, raising awareness of the language, while entertaining and informing at the same time, is being recognised in this way.’ Author and poet James Robertson adds that: ‘Scots Radio remains the only place in the media where Scots can be heard regularly, in all its dialect and regional varieties, featuring urban and rural speakers discussing a whole range of subjects across daily life. Frieda Morrison and her colleagues give the lie to the notion that Scots in the media is only fit for fitbaw and comedy – although that is not to say that

there isn’t plenty of humour in the programmes. Scots Radio continues to be an oral-aural celebration of the Scots tongue and as such is both a delight and a necessity – a rare example of the Scots language being given its rightful place in our media.’ Frieda was in Douglas on the Isle of Man for the 38th Celtic Media Festival which took place on 3-5 May 2017. Although Scots Radio did not win, getting there was a huge achievement. As Frieda said: ‘We have been judged by a Scottish jury and an International jury - on behalf o the Scots Radio team, thank-you tae oor listeners and contributors for their support.’


IS NOW INTERACTIVE! As the official magazine of the Standing Council of Clan Chiefs, our mission is to reach as many Scots, members of the worldwide Scottish diaspora and fans of Scotland as possible.

Heritage Magazine




Untitled-8 113

To fulfill this mission, Scots Heritage is now published in enhanced digital form. This will also allow more people worldwide to read Scotland’s finest historical journal. With interactive features that allow you to sample book chapters, hear music, see new video content and peruse a huge array of extra images, Scots Heritage – the leading Scottish history and heritage magazine – just got even better. Tel: 01371 851868 Email:


06/06/2017 13:17:50






Call +44 (0)1371 851868 Quote SFSCOTS25 Scottish Field is Scotland’s quality lifestyle magazine featuring articles on wildlife, food, gardens, property, and Scottish history. Every month we have social scene pages plus competitions and our subscribers get the opportunity to review top Scottish hotels.


Terms and conditions: Cancellation charges apply and no refunds can be given. This offer is open to new subscribers only and does not apply to those renewing their subscription. Minimum subscription - one year only. Cancellations are not possible during this period. By purchasing this subscription offer you agree for Wyvex Media Ltd to share your details and to contact you. Offer ends 22 September 2017.

Sc sum 17 SF subs advert.indd 114

06/06/2017 13:21:11


Image: Andy Murray winning the 2013 Wimbledon final.

Words Jim Anderson


Game, set



t was the worst day of my life, and I blame Andy Murray. Let me explain. If you live any length of time here you can’t help but to be swept up in the wave of what outsiders misperceive as Scottish defeatism. We are proud, we are scrappy and we’re not afraid to stand up to nations much bigger than ours.

That’s where the misperception comes in. We’ve suffered so many setbacks throughout the centuries that we celebrate them in an entirely Scottish way: not as losses of power and liberty – these things are fleeting – but as milestones in the history of a people who get up, dust ourselves off and get back in the fight. We may lose some battles, 115

Untitled-9 115

06/06/2017 13:55:36

WE MAY LOSE SOME Not any more. Unless S I R A W E you’re lucky enough to H T T U B , S E L T T A B run into someone whose reN E V E R F I N I S H E D cently-deceased spouse used to work at but the war is never finished. These days, military manoeuvres have been replaced by sporting events. The enthusiasm with which other countries spur their team to victory is replaced here by the dutiful tuning in to BBC Scotland, comfortably assured that we’ll score first and never again choke on the 18th green or double-fault away a match point. It was with this assumption of defeat that I didn’t bother to watch Andy Murray against Novak Djokovic in the 2013 men’s singles finals at Wimbledon. Really, what was the point? He’d live to fight again, so I thought I’d buy some whisky instead. An online auction was offering some bottles that would nicely fill some gaps in my collection. Ten years ago, I wouldn’t have even considered buying whisky this way. In those days, hidden gems were easily unearthed by visiting distilleries and simply asking if there were anything lying around with an inch of dust on the bottle that I might take off their hands.

Untitled-9 116

Port Ellen, you’re eventually going to find yourself in an online auction. So, there I was on July 7, sitting in front of the computer next to a blank television screen. Without even thinking, I began bidding on many more whiskies than I could possibly afford. Delightful and rare bottles of Ardbeg, Mortlach, maybe even some Old Pulteney. I put healthy bids on 16 lots knowing in my Scottish heart that I’d be lucky to come away with two or three. Which is when Andy Murray ruined my life. You see, this particular auction was set up for live bidding to safeguard against entering a maximum bid weeks in advance and letting the computer sort things out. It can be a truly exciting moment when new bidders are no longer taken and just the remaining, redeyed whisky freaks can slug Image: Live bidding in online whisky auctions can be costly.


06/06/2017 13:55:53

it out until someone cries uncle. That is, if there are any other bidders. What I hadn’t considered on that summer Sunday afternoon, was that everyone else in Scotland would be watching Andy Murray win in straight sets, not buying whisky. So, when the clock struck 6:00 to close the virtual bidding gate I couldn’t believe what I was seeing on the screen. No matter how many times I refreshed

EVERYONE ELSE IN SCOTLAND W OULD BE Y A R R U M Y D N A WATCHING WI N, NO T BU YI NG WH IS KY the page, my worst fears began to set me into a panic. I hadn’t won the two or three lots I’d expected – I’d won all sixteen. In a peculiar way I had managed to turn victory into defeat. After accepting my lots I went through the tearful experience of draining my bank account to the last penny. Hitting the Enter button, I walked to the cabinet, selected a bottle of something nice and, putting the glass to my lips, sat back, closed my eyes and chuckled to myself about just how Scottish I’ve become. Jim Anderson is co-owner of The Anderson in Fortrose




Untitled-9 117

06/06/2017 13:56:20

XXXXXX Words John King Bellassai

Main image: Scottish Independence Declaration of Arbroath 6th April 1320. Inset: Declaration of Independence of the United States of America 4th July 1776.

Links Independent


john bellasai.indd 118

06/06/2017 14:00:35


ere in the USA, we’ve just wrapped up another annual celebration of Tartan Day, which we observe each year on 6th April, the anniversary of the 1320 Declaration of Arbroath. Parties and parades behind us for yet another year, it is only natural that we reflect on the significance of it all for those of us in the Ancestral Diaspora. This is especially timely, given that next year we will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Tartan Day holiday, which has now firmly taken root in communities all across our land. As I’ve pointed out before in this column, the real meaning of Tartan Day is contained in the plain wording of the standing resolutions of both houses of the US Congress that authorise its observance: To recognise and celebrate the many contributions

of Scots, and Scottish-Americans, to the founding and subsequent development of the United States. Many of our Scottish cousins love to come over and help us celebrate Tartan Day, this year including the First Minister. But they still tend to wince at the name (which we actually borrowed from the Canadians), as being quaint at best, maybe even brigadoonish. That is short-sighted. Even more than the thistle or the saltire, the tartan is a universally recognized symbol of the Scottish ‘brand’- not just something Highland, but something quintessentially Scottish. After all, it is well-documented that lowland ladies widely wore tartan shawls and wraps to protest the Union in the earliest days of the 18th century - a sentiment that some in modern Scot-

Image: Tartan Day is celebrated in New York annually on 6th April, the anniversary of the 1320 Declaration of Arbroath.


john bellasai.indd 119

06/06/2017 14:00:46

being found in the Declaration of Arbroath. But should we so quickly dismiss the link? I think not. Much recent scholarship supports it, and an actual analysis of the structure of the two documents, even some striking similarities in phrasing, suggest that 1320 was indeed a powerful inspiration for 1776. Not the only one, to be sure, but an important one, nonetheless. The key to understanding the link between the two declarations lies in the fact that the American Revolution came right on the heels of the Scottish Enlightenment and that the works of many Scottish philosophers and academicians were being widely read, and deeply appreciated, in the American colonies in the decades immediately preceding our break with Britain. Though all estimates tell us that Scots immigrants to the American colonies prior to 1776 made up less than 10 percent of the general population, their influence on the worldview held by the educated segment of the population was far out of proportion to their numbers. Why so? The answer lies in the fact that 18th century Scots immigrants includ-

Left: Robert the Bruce on guard at Stirling Castle, carved from sandstone by Andrew Currie. Right: 1970 five pence commemorative stamp of the signing of the Declaration of Arbroath.

land seem to be embracing once more. A piece of tartan has even been found stuffed inside a clay pot, buried at the base of Hadrian’s Wall, wrapped around a fistful of 1st century Roman coins. So tartan has been a commonly recognised symbol of ‘things Scottish’ for a long time. Here in America, 32 of our 50 states - typically those with heavy Scottish immigration - have officially adopted their own tartans, registering them with the Scottish Tartans Authority. The romance of the ‘Tartan Day’ name aside, most in Scotland and many in America still pooh-pooh the claimed inspiration for our Tartan Day holiday 120

john bellasai.indd 120

06/06/2017 14:01:09

ed many well-educated clergymen and graduates of Scottish universities - Edinburgh, Glasgow, St Andrews and Aberdeen - the seats of the Enlightenment. These two classes of immigrants were well-acquainted with the works of Adam Ferguson, Francis Hutcheson, David Hume, Lord Kames and others that espoused the so-called ‘Common Sense Philosophy’ then prevalent among the educated in Scotland. Both at the grammar school level and in the majority of the six universities in the American colonies (four of which were founded by Scots), Scottish immigrants predominated in the teaching ranks; as a result, these Scottish Enlightenment works were widely read and debated among both faculty and students in America. We know that far from being an obscure document, the Declaration of Arbroath was well known in Scotland

in the years immediately preceding the adoption of the Treaty of Union in 1707, because it featured in the so-called ‘pamphlet wars’ that swirled around that event. Moreover, we know the Declaration of Arbroath itself went through at least four mass printings in Scotland in the decades between 1707 and 1776—showing that it was widely read and its sentiments appreciated. But did this knowledge really cross the Atlantic? In many ways, the key to understanding how the Scottish Declaration of Arbroath came to influence the American Declaration of Independence is to understand the relationship between William Small and Thomas Jefferson. Small was born in Scotland in 1734 and emigrated to America in 1758, settling in Virginia, where he became a professor of rhetoric at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburgh.

Image: John Trumbull’s oil on canvas depiction of US ‘Decalaration of Independence, July 4, 1776’ completed in 1819. 121

john bellasai.indd 121

06/06/2017 14:01:23

Image: American Founding Father Thomas Jefferson, principal author of the Declaration of Independence and subsequently 3rd President, 1801 to 1809.

But prior to emigrating, Small had attended Mariscal College in Aberdeen, graduating in 1755. And while a student there, he studied under William Duncan, Professor of Natural Philosophy, whose 1748 work, Elements of Logick - the dominant logical treatise of its time - was widely read, both in Scotland and in America. Jefferson studied under Small at William & Mary, graduating in 1761; through Small he became well acquainted with the work of Duncan. The two men, Jefferson and Small, remained life-long friends. In his autobiography, Jefferson described Small as his mentor. In March of 1764, shortly after graduating university, Jefferson purchased a copy of William Robertson’s The History of Scotland, which addressed in great detail the events of the Scottish wars of independence, culminating in the Declaration of Arbroath. We also know that Jefferson’s mother’s family, the Randolphs, who numbered among the Virginia gentry, claimed descent from Thomas FitzRandolph, Earl of Moray, nephew of King Robert the Bruce and himself a signer of the Declaration of

Arbroath. We know that Jefferson was aware of this claimed descent on his mother’s side. Doubtless this connection with a signer of the Declaration of Arbroath affected Jefferson’s appreciation of the events of 1320. A review of the catalogue of his library at Monticello shows that Jefferson owned works by almost all the great thinkers and writers of the Scottish Enlightenment, including Hutcheson, Hume, Ferguson, Kames, Adam Smith, and others: a life-long interest he kept. The structural organisation of the American Declaration of Independence is a logical syllogism and this suggests Jefferson was inspired by the logician and rhetorician Duncan, whose work was taught to Jefferson by Small. Jefferson’s document conforms to the structure recommended by Duncan for conveying the maximum degree of conviction and certainty, a series of five propositions - 1) that all men are created equal; 2) that they are endowed

Jefferson later owned works by almost all the great thinkers and writers of the Scottish Enlightenment


john bellasai.indd 122

06/06/2017 14:01:40

Each declares that the assent of the governed is a key ingredient in the new political order it is advocating by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; 3) that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; 4) that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men; and 5) that when any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it. This is followed in the Declaration of Independence by a self-evident major premise: that when government becomes tyranny, men have a right to rebel against it. This structure conforms carefully with Duncan’s rhetorical standards for proving any proposition, as contained in his 1748 treatise. These facts aside, did the 1320 Declaration directly influence the 1776 Declaration? Apart from both declarations being of similar length and signed by approximately the same number of ‘worthies’ (39 bishops and nobles at Arbroath, 56 delegates at Philadelphia, appointed by the 13 colonies), many of the clauses in Jefferson’s declaration closely echo sentiments in the Declaration of Arbroath, even down to a similarity in any of the words used: for example, both summon God to be their witness as to the rightness of their cause (the Scots calling him ‘the Supreme King and Judge’, the Americans calling him ‘the Supreme Judge of the World’). Each

john bellasai.indd 123

contains a list of grievances against the tyrannical actions of an English king as justification for them to take up arms. Each declares that the assent of the governed is a key ingredient in the new political order it is advocating - for the Scottish people in 1320, to throw off the English yoke and choose their own king (The Bruce), from among their own citizens; for the Americans in 1776, to throw off the English yoke and set up a new form of self-government (a constitutional republic). And each says that if the new government does not meet the peoples’ expectations, they may change it, yet again. Each says the freedoms for which they fight are meant to apply to all their citizens (the Scots listing ‘Jew and gentile alike’). In each instance, the signers pledge to support and defend each other. And in each instance, the signers say they enter into this written compact for freedom alone, to which cause they pledge their lives and their sacred honour.

John King Bellassai is President of the Council of Scottish Clans & Associations (COSCA) and Vice President of the National Capital Tartan Day Committee. (His maternal grandfather, John King, emigrated from Killearn, in Stirlingshire, to America in 1910.) 123

06/06/2017 14:01:57

SUMMER BREAK Words Claire Macaulay

Queen of the


Image: Carraig Fhada, Islay’s famous square lighthouse opposite Port Ellen. 124

area feature.indd 124

06/06/2017 14:09:07

Image: The 8th century Kildalton Cross stands in the graveyard of the ruined former parish church.


slay, the ‘Queen of the Hebrides’, sits proudly off the west coast of Scotland. From rolling sand dunes to towering sea cliffs, this truly is an island of contrasts. Benefiting from the warmth of the Gulf Stream, Islay’s climate is mild, like its seasons, and generous rainfall sustains abundant greenery. Due to the presence of Lochs Gruinart and Indaal in the north and south respectively, Islay has a long coastline of stunning beaches and precarious cliffs, fringing machair, moor, farm and woodland, and is ever popular with artists and photographers.

area feature.indd 125


The Big Strand, spanning over seven miles, is the longest uninterrupted beach on the island. Stretching from Laggan Point to the Oa Peninsula, the beach is exposed to the elements, making it a bracing but nevertheless popular walk. The sheer size of The Big Strand affords visitors a degree of privacy not offered by many other beaches, making it a hotspot in summer. On a smaller scale, Killinallan Point, with its sunbleached sands and cerulean waters, is the epitome of a Hebridean beach, and on a clear day the Isle of Mull can be seen across the waters.

06/06/2017 14:09:21

at around 3,000, it is famed for its bird population of more than 200 species, 100 of which breed here. The multitude and range of habitats allow for a wide variety of birds to thrive, and the convenience of so many birds existing in one location proves tantalising to many ornithologists. The abundance of the population is such that one isn’t required to go birdwatching to observe a satisfying amount of birdlife yearround. For the more avid birdwatcher, there is an RSPB hide on Loch Gruinart located on the north coast of the island. The Gruinart Flats, which lie at the

In contrast to the sweeps of sand, formidable cliffs overhang the coastline. Notably, the unforgiving wildness of the island can be observed at the Mull of Oa, where the cliffs rise to 200m at its most southerly point, Beinn Mhor (literally ‘big hill’). Oa is the site of the American Monument, erected in 1920 to memorialise those lost in the Tuscania and Ontario ship disasters in the year 1918. Regrettably, Islay has seen many ships wrecked on its shores; ferocious winds and strong currents have proven fatal for many vessels. While Islay’s human population sits

While Islay’s human population sits at around 3,000, it is famed for its bird population of more than 200 species, 100 of which breed on the island

Image: A ringed plover, just one of 200 species of birds on the island. 126

area feature.indd 126

06/06/2017 14:09:40

Image:The picturesque fishing village Portnahaven. 127

area feature.indd 127

06/06/2017 14:09:57

Contention for the ownership of the island in 1598 saw the MacLeans burning the MacDonalds alive inside the chapel head of the loch, are flooded by the RSPB to provide a habitat for waders and other birds. Created in the 1830s by diverting the river which flowed from the loch, this marshy habitat sees over 45% of the world’s Greenland barnacle goose population wintering here each year, with up to 18,000 on the flats at any one time. This fiercely beautiful landscape possesses a legacy of lost power. In the fourteenth and fifteenth century, the islands on Loch Finlaggan functioned as the administrative centre of the Lordship of the Isles, which at the time maintained much of the highlands and islands as an independent and largely democratic society. Lords of the Isles were inaugurated here, providing an opportunity for feasting and celebration equal to that of a coronation of the time. Nowadays, ruins of sixteenth century houses lie among carpets of heather on the site of this bygone nucleus. This area holds a quieter power now than in days of old, the captivating lake views and uninterrupted tranquilli-

ty creating a pocket of reality not often seen in the hubbub of modern 21st century life. To the north of the island, the bones of Kilnave Chapel overlook Loch Gruniart. The serene beauty of this water-facing ruin masks a grisly history, where contention for the ownership of the island in 1598 saw the MacLeans burning the MacDonalds alive inside the chapel where they took refuge following the battle of Gruinart Strand. Standing tall in the grounds, a high cross bore witness to this slaughter on holy ground. Perhaps the most iconic building on the island is Kilarrow Parish Church, known locally as “The Round Church” due to its circular design, which, according to legend is thus shaped to deny the devil a hiding spot in a place of wor-

Image: Kilarrow Parish Church, known as ‘The Round Church’. 128

area feature.indd 128

06/06/2017 14:10:14

ship. One of only two circular churches in Scotland, it proudly sits atop Main Street in Bowmore; the main village on Islay. The church was built in 1767 by order of Daniel Campbell of Shawfield, a former MP who bought the isles of Islay and Jura following the Glasgow Malt Riots of 1725. During these riots, Campbell’s property was vandalised, and using the resulting compensation he refurbished and sold his home in Glasgow, relocating his family to Islay. It is said that Campbell’s inspiration for this unconventional building resulted from his exposure to Italian architecture on a trip to Europe.

Islay’s whisky legacy is famed worldwide, with legend stating that distilling was first brought to the island by Irish monks in the fourteenth century. The abundance of peat as fuel, spring water, and home grown barley makes the location perfectly suited to whisky production. Currently the island houses eight distilleries, with plans for more, all of which produce unique whiskies similar only in the possession of a peaty smokiness from the location. The more famously peaty distilleries, such as Ardbeg on the south of the island, use the peat of the island in as much of the process as possible, using peat rich water 129

area feature.indd 129

06/06/2017 14:10:37

Image: You won’t be fighting the crowds on any of Islay’s beaches.

Image: A stormy evening in the bay.

music and entertainment. In addition to the tourists it attracts each year, the festivities draw in visiting creatives and musicians (including Runrig and Dougie MacLean). From her stunning natural beauty, rich tapestry of history, and flourishing modern industry, the “Queen of the Hebrides” boasts many jewels to her crown; it is easy to see why she was so named.

and heavily peated malt. Bunnahabhain to the north, however, use minimally peated barley, giving a lighter tasting whisky, more accessible to the casual drinker. One sure way to experience the island’s full culture is through the week-long Feis Ile (or Islay Festival). Approaching its 31st year, it is an experience not to be missed. The festival of music and malt sees distilleries opening their doors, as well as plenty of live 130

area feature.indd 130

06/06/2017 14:11:00

ISLAY AT A GLANCE ISLAY ROYALTY Islay is affectionately known as the Queen of the Hebrides. BIRTHPLACE Lord George Robertson the former NATO Secretary was born in Port Ellen. WHISKY GALORE The island is small but mighty, it boasts 8 distilleries despite only being 25 miles long. TARTAN PIMPERNEL Reverend Donald Caskie was born in Bowmore and later helped over 2000 escape France in World War Two. He was known as the ‘Tartan Pimpernel’. ANCIENT DISCOVERY A flint arrowhead has been found on the island. It is estimated to have been from around 10,800 BC. LIMPET POWER Installed near Portnahaven in 2008, LIMPET (Land Installed Marine Powered Energy Transmitter) was the first commerical wave turbine in the world.

CASTLE ON THE HILL Finlaggan Castle sits on an island in the loch, and was the seat of Clan Donald. HISTORIC TITLE The title of the Lord of the Isles now belongs to Charles, Prince of Wales. TAKE HEED A traveller was once warned by locals, ‘One sip and you live forever; two sips and you go blind; three sips and you expire on the spot.’ Presumably referring to whisky!


Follow SCOTS Heritage Magazine for online updates

area feature.indd 131

06/06/2017 14:11:31


Clans & Societies CLAN STRACHAN

Clan Strachan is an ancient clan dating back to the 12th century. The Clan became an armigerous clan in 1828 – the chieftain line died out and the clan became dormant. Steps are being taken to rectify the matter. Clan Strachan has now been recognised as a clan in its own right by the Lord Lyon. Rob Strachan from Mill of Strachan near Banchory, Aberdeenshire has been elected as Clan Commander. After a suitable period of time, it is hoped that Rob will be recognised as Clan Chieftain by the Lord Lyon. This was all made possible by the unstinting efforts of two Californians – James (Jim) Andrew Strachan and Dennis Craig Strawhun. Thanks to them and others, Clan Strachan is going from strength to strength but we are always on the lookout for new members. Further information can be obtained from Clan Strachan Society: Dennis Strawhun Email: USA James (Jim) Andrew Strachan Email: Tel: +1 951-760-8575 UK Rob Strachan Email: James Andrew (Drew) Strachan Email: Tel: +44 (0)1343 544580 Roddy & Fiona Strachan Email: CANADA Dr Lloyd Strachan Email: Bruce Strachan Email: AUSTRALIA Scott J. Strachan Email: Ciaran Strachan Email:


Clan Chieftain, Sir Malcolm Colquhoun of Luss established The Clan Colquhoun International Society as the only official society representing all Colquhouns and its many septs including Calhoun, Cowan, Kilpatrick, Lang, McLintock, Pickens, etc. and welcomes those simply interested in Scots heritage. The society is spread across the globe and membership benefits include genealogy assistance, invitations to private events, exclusive merchandise, and more. The lands on Loch Lomond have been held within the family since 1150 A.D. and Sir Malcolm’s family actively preserves the Colquhoun estate and its clan history. Michael Lloyd-Stern Executive Director The Clan Colquhoun International Society


The Clan Currie Society is one of the preeminent cultural societies preserving and promoting Scottish culture. In addition to offering scholarships, the Society’s signature events include The Pipes of Christmas and Tartan Day on Ellis Island. The society sponsors the National Scottish Harp Championship of America. The society was formed in 1959 to further the knowledge and appreciation of the MacMhuirich bardic dynasty. The Clan Currie Society P.O. Box 541 Summit, NJ USA 07902-0541 Tel: + (908) 273-3509 Email:


Scottish Heritage USA recognises and enhances the bonds of ancestral and national character between Scotland and North America. A non-profit organisation dedicated to the preservation and enrichment of Scottish tradition, history, crafts and culture, Scottish Heritage has contributed more than $2,000,000 to projects in Scotland and North America. Anyone who is interested in Scotland and its history is invited to join Scottish Heritage in promoting these ideas. Scottish Heritage USA, Inc. PO Box 457, Pinehurst, NC 28374-0457 Contact: Rev. Douglas F. Kelly, President or Eileen Helton, Office Manager Phone: (910) 295.4448 email:

To feature your clan or society here, contact Janice Johnston:


Battles, lands and legends. Scottish history for American descendants. Colour images, 54 pages. $12.98 plus postage.

The Clan MacLennan is a vibrant and progressive worldwide organisation with active Associations in Scotland, Australia, Canada and the USA. The clan is also represented in New Zealand, France and Spain. Originally from Kintail in Ross-shire, our clan retains strong connections with our homeland. As well as promoting our heritage, traditions and customs, the clan seeks to re-unite clansmen and clanswomen throughout the world and holds regular gatherings in Scotland, Australia, Canada and the USA. We are actively involved in the creation of a MacLennan genealogical family-sharing database, which can help people trace their ancestry, and welcome input and enquiries from MacLennans worldwide. Please get in touch with us with any general enquiries, interest in membership, attending future events or information on the genealogy family-sharing database. Scotland Chief Ruairidh MacLennan of MacLennan The Old Mill, Dores, Inverness, Scotland, IV2 6TR Australia Chief’s Commissioner Carol Davis Canada Chief’s Commissioner Melanie McLennan USA Association President Jim McLennan Genealogy Bruce McLennan


Untitled-11 132

06/06/2017 14:19:18


In tune

A round-up of the latest Scottish and Celtic music from Scots Heritage’s music reviewer Kenny Graham

Strata, Siobhan Miller, £7.99

Following on from her highly acclaimed debut, Flight of Time, Strata is Siobhan Miller’s latest stunning album and it is clear that she has not wasted the intervening period. From the opening Banks of Newfoundland to the late Andy M. Stewart’s crowd pleaser The Ramblin’ Rover, complete with accordion input from no less than Phil Cunningham, Siobhan conveys a deep understanding of the songs with her rich, honest vocals. Supported by an outrageously talented and award-winning bunch of musicians such as the aforementioned Cunningham, Kris Drever, Aaron Jones, and Aidan O’Rourke to name but a few, the whole album is an aural treat in which Siobhan pays homage to songs and music absorbed as she grew up. Adding her own respectful take to some great numbers, Bob Dylan’s One Too Many Mornings a fine example, Siobhan exudes a confidence that whets the appetite for her next release.

Untitled-12 133

The Cocklers Songs from a Time and Place The Alan Bell Band, £12

Alan Bell has been writing songs since the 1960s and in this latest album he covers a quite diverse range of subjects from tragedies such as the ill fated Cocklers of Morecambe Bay, a downed Bomber that crashed into a school and a tribute to 30s variety shows. In the true folk tradition this album bears witness to contemporary and historical events, recounting tales in verse to be passed down the generations. WHY NOT TRY OUR FULLY INTERACTIVE VERSION OF THIS MAGAZINE ON POCKETMAGS.COM WHICH HAS TRACKS TO SAMPLE ON OUR MUSIC REVIEW PAGES 133

06/06/2017 14:26:27

How do you know Tim Edey, £10

Hugely talented, multi-instrumentalist, Tim Edey continues along his musical voyage of discovery collaborating with some wonderful musicians such as old friend, Charlie Mckerron, Gordon Gunn and box player Dermot Byrne, the latter two with whom he opens proceedings in a toe- tapping, self-explanatory set Box ‘n’ Fiddle Party! With the beguiling vocal talents of Lizabett Russo added to the mix, Tim reveals his own understated singing skills as he explores phobias in The Elevator Blues and leaves us with a delightful You Give Me Your Love. Seamlessly moving between blues, jazz and trad, Tim plays with a freedom that refuses to be pigeonholed into any particular genre and the sheer joy that exudes from his music making is evident from his live stage performances. One can almost feel him smiling throughout this album as he showcases his unique and at times breathtaking instrumental skills against some gentle yet captivating songs..

The Wren and the Salt Air Jenny Sturgeon, £5

Influenced by the landscape and nature that surrounded them, music and song would have been important to those who lived on St Kilda and Jenny Sturgeon, commissioned by the National Trust for Scotland to write a piece to commemorate the 30th anniversary of St Kilda’s status as a world heritage site, has perfectly encapsulated the archipelago in words and beautiful music interwoven with field recordings of the birds who inhabit this remote and challenging land.


Untitled-12 134

06/06/2017 14:26:53

Songs of Robert Burns Robyn Stapleton, £7.99

It is said that actors can only call themselves actors when they play the great Shakespearian roles and it often feels that the equivalent rite of passage for traditional singers is to sing Burns and sadly there are some who just can’t make it work. Robyn Stapleton, however, is one of the few who breathes new life into the Bard’s words. With some fabulous musicians in support, Robyn’s huge voice, mature beyond her years, treats the songs with respect and understanding. The melodies are at once familiar yet fresh and vibrant, classically precise but with a freedom afforded traditional musicians.

The Lullaby Album - Beneath Stars and Moon, Gillian Bowman, £10.99

The Complete Songs of Robert Tannahill Vol.IV Various, £10.99

Whilst this lovely album of music and song is aimed at gently lilting little ones off to sleep, the accomplished vocals and guitar from Gill Bowman combining with Siannie Moodie’s captivating clarsach make it as appealing to adults who will recognise the darker folklore contained in many familiar tradition songs. Supplemented with some of Gill and Siannie’s own delightful compositions, this is a timeless collection of lullabies delivered with Scottish influence.

Tannahill has often played second fiddle to the more illustrious Burns but Dr Fred Freeman has rightfully brought him recognition that has been sadly missing. With a fabulous array of singers and musicians on hand to record the fourth and penultimate volume of the songs of Robert Tannahill, this vital project to highlight the Paisley poet’s compositions is a pleasure to listen to as the cast inject the energy and dynamism that the songs deserve. 135

Untitled-12 135

06/06/2017 14:27:18

Five Songs Barbara Dickson, ÂŁ3.95

Barbara Dickson has been singing in clubs and concert halls for the past five decades. To coincide with her latest tour she has recorded this aptly entitled five song EP which contains some well recognised traditional songs such as Farewell to Fiunary and The Laird of the Dainty Dounby along with the self penned The Hill. Despite the passing of time, Barbara continues to enchant fans old and new with her powerful and captivating voice.

Cracks In The Room Twelfth Day, ÂŁ12

Classically trained fiddler Catriona Price and harpist Esther Swift combine their technical expertise to bring together a genre free album which, though cleverly written and deftly played, may split opinion. This is a recording that demands concentration with some deliberately, just slightly discordant harmonies that serve to mirror the subject matter of internal struggle, particularly in Crack. For those who want to hear something slightly more challenging and different, this is certainly worth a listen.


Untitled-12 136

06/06/2017 14:27:42


In print...

A selection of literature to ensure that your reading has a truly Scottish perspective

Between Daylight and Hell: Scots Who Left a Stain on American History By Iain Lundy This highly engaging and often humorous work features the misdeeds of Scots who left for America. From land grabbers to murderers, Lundy outlines their lives in Scotland as well as in the New World, and recounts their – often brutal – crimes. This work provides an insight into an alternate Scottish legacy in America than the inventers and great thinkers often proudly referenced. Whittles Publishing, Ltd, £18.99

Untitled-13 137

A Distant View of Everything: An Isabel Dalhousie Novel By Alexander McCall Smith Isabel Dalhousie returns in the 11th instalment of McCall’s bestselling series. When an old friend and matchmaker makes a potentially dangerous introduction and requests Isabel’s help, she finds that the evidence is not leading her where she thought it would, with potentially dire personal consequences. McCall’s distinctively gentle writing style makes this an easy and charming read. Little, Brown, £18.99 137

06/06/2017 14:31:53

Bobby the Birdman Edited by Jonathan Wills and Mike McDonnell

The Prince Who Would Be King: The Life and Death of Henry Stuart By Sarah Fraser

Bobby Tulloch, known as “Tucker” to his friends, was a celebrated ornithologist, tour guide, author and wildlife photographer whose sensational discovery of a pair of snowy owls nesting on the island of Feltar in 1967 made him a national celebrity overnight – snowy owls had not been seen breeding in Britain for decades. This collection of memories and photos from friends of Tulloch gives an insight into the man he was as well as a delve into life on the island of Shetland, and is prefaced by Bill Oddie. Birlinn, £20.00

Henry Stuart, Prince of Wales, would have become the first prince to rule the four countries of Britain, were it not for his untimely death in 1612; following which his younger brother Charles I took the throne, and Henry’s memory faded to obscurity. Described as a brave and charismatic prince as well as a passionate collector, scientist, and builder, Henry embodied the qualities many desired in a prince. Fraser explores the life of this would-be ruler who opposed Catholicism and sought to secure Britain’s place in North America. William Collins, £25.00 138

Untitled-13 138

06/06/2017 14:32:14

Wild Guide Scotland: Hidden Places, Great Adventures and the Good Life By Kimberley Grant, David Boyson Cooper & Richard Gaston

Where Did That Regiment Go?: The Lineage of British Infantry and Cavalry Regiments at a Glance By Gerry Murphy

The newest compendium from the best-selling Wild Guide series explores Scotland and features 750 hidden gems that the average tourist (or seasoned local) may not think to visit, including grottoes, lost ruins, and ancient forests. The collection also outlines unique places to stay and eat, and even includes locational coordinates for those who truly operate off the grid. Featuring breathtaking photography and dynamic maps, this guide is easy to navigate. Wild Things Publishing, £16.99

In this volume, Murphy charts the changes and amalgamations of each British Army regiment following the first significant military mergers in 1881. Where previous works have detailed the structural changes in the regiments, Murphy’s use of a lineage chart makes it uniquely easy to navigate. Utilising bitesize charts laid out by divisions, this work documents the progression of the British regiments. This highly informative work includes the number of regimental antecedents, honours, colours, and insignia of each regiment in appendices. This is an essential work for a military enthusiast which is digestible enough to please a casual reader. Spellmount, £17.99 139

Untitled-13 139

06/06/2017 14:32:35

Jane Welsh Carlyle and Her Victorian World: A Story of Love, Work, Friendship and Marriage By Kathy Chamberlain

The Distilleries of Campbeltown: The Rise and Fall of the Whisky Capital of the World By David Stirk

Jane Welsh Carlyle, hailed one of the great letter-writers, has been largely ignored in favour of her husband, historian and essayist Thomas Carlyle. Chamberlain sets out to rectify this in a fascinating exploration of the period of 1843-1849, where Jane has moved from her native Scotland to Chelsea. While in London, Jane struggled with her literary aspirations and her role as a Victorian wife; and became friendly with Dickens and Gaskell, among others. She reported on this period until her husband’s infatuation with the Lady Harriet Baring became a point of contention between the pair. This is the first biography of Jane’s life, drawn from Jane’s own correspondences. Duckworth Overlook, £25.00 140

Untitled-13 140

Campbeltown, Argyle and Bute, once whisky capital of the world, had 29 simultaneously operational distilleries in 1835. The town that had once relied on herring fishery became a powerhouse following the legalisation of distilling in the 1920s, when many illicit distillers became legally operating businesses. Campbeltown’s industry declined when the blending trade rose to prominence in the 1860s. With the use of photographs, correspondences, and documents, Stirk details the establishment and decline of the world famous whisky industry in Campbeltown. Neil Wilson Publishing £14.99

06/06/2017 14:33:01

Tartan + Tweed By Caroline Young and Ann Martin Young and Martin provide a fresh look at the quintessentially Scottish fabrics tartan and tweed. The rich cultural history of these textiles which originated in the Scottish Highlands is explored in this meticulously researched work which draws from first person sources, documents, paintings and fashion photographs. From crofters to fashion houses, the authors detail the impact of these fabrics in Scotland and beyond, both as historical pieces and, increasingly, articles of common culture. Frances Lincoln, £25.00

For My Sins By Alex Nye Written from the point of view of Mary, Queen of Scots, Nye’s first work of adult fiction imagines the regrets and mistakes of the short lived Queen as she weaves her tapestry on the eve of her execution. This gripping account details the colourful life of the monarch, as Mary herself explains her actions as a woman trapped by the male dominated society in which she lived. Fledgling Press Ltd £9.99


Untitled-13 141

06/06/2017 14:33:16

The Edinburgh of John Kay: Portraits and Tales of Everyday Life in Edinburgh’s ‘Golden Age’ By Eric Melvin

Islay Voices Edited by Jenni Minto and Les Wilson Often referred to as the “Queen of the Hebrides”, Islay has drawn many visitors to its shores with its wildlife and whisky. This anthology features accounts of the island from its residents, from medieval times to the present, and Archibald Cameron’s photographs give readers an unrestricted look into island life. With chapters ranging from folk belief, bards of the island, and the impact of war; this analogy gives a varied and full account of life on Islay through the years. Birlinn, £20.00

Melvin explores the works of the caricaturist and engraver John Kay as a lens into the cultural changes of Edinburgh in the 18th century. While initially Kay worked as a barber, the popularity of his drawings, said to be strong likenesses of their subjects, led to him pursuing his sketches full time. He sketched many of his contemporaries which included Adam Smith, James Hutton and Joseph Black. Melvin provides context for Kay’s work, allowing readers to appreciate the importance of his creations as providing an insight into his time. Eric Melvin £12.99 142

Untitled-13 142

06/06/2017 14:33:45


Image: At Lorient 12 selected pipers have to play a piece of Scottish, Breton and Irish pipe music.

The Lorient melting pot pipers from

Festival is a pip ing that attracts 4,5 00 different traditi ons Words Stuart Cassells

f o s e p i P e c a e p


his August at The Lorient Interceltique Festival in Brittany will again be ‘The Year of Scotland’. I’ve been lucky to have attended and performed at the annual Lorient Interceltique Festival on seven different years and as well as making a huge impact on my musical development, it also profoundly impacted my personal view of the world. The Lorient Interceltique Festival was

piping.indd 143


founded in 1971 and is dedicated to promoting the cultural traditions of the Celtic nations and people from Brittany, Galicia, Asturias, Ireland, Cornwall, Wales, Scotland and now the entire Celtic diaspora from Canada to New Zealand. Each year, a different country has the honour of being the main focus of the festival and this year sees Scotland assume this honour for the first time since 2007. From small beginnings the Lorient

06/06/2017 14:38:39

I KNEW A COUPLE OF T ’ N D I D I T U B S E N U T IRISH EVEN KNOW PIPES Y N A T T I R B N I D E Y A L WERE P festival has now grown to over 750,000 visitors to see 4,500 performers over ten days. The Lorient Interceltique Festival is known to have been a tremendous influence to many pipers over the years including Gordon Duncan and Fred Morrison as well as well-known groups such as Capercaillie and The Old Blind Dogs. My first time at the festival was in 1995 where as a raw 16-year-old Scottish piper I was invited to participate in what was then ‘The Macallan’ Piping Trophy (now The McCrimmon Trophy), a very prestigious invitational competition for only 12 pipers coming from the Scottish, Irish and Breton traditions. It is a uniquely challenging competition where each piper has to play three times in three different styles - a Scottish March, Strathspey and Reel, an Irish medley and a Breton medley. At that time, I was essentially focused on Scottish competitive solo piping and although I knew a couple of Irish tunes from Terry Tully’s music books, I didn’t even know there were bagpipes being played in Brittany and I’d never before heard any Breton music. Irish music and Scottish music were in most ways sim-

piping.indd 144

ilar in technique and idiom but Breton dances were completely different. To prepare for the competition, the festival organiser gave me a cassette tape of a typical Breton medley around four weeks before and I did my best to learn it by ear. I turned up at Lorient that August and was introduced to a Breton piper who subsequently told me I was playing it all wrong. Too late to change now I competed in the three different contests and I can’t remember exactly how I did, but I certainly didn’t win the competition or even place in the top four. However, I did win an amazing experience of ten days of total immersion in music and culture from around the world. I learned new tunes and played with pipers from Galicia, Asturias, Brit144

06/06/2017 14:38:55

In recent years, we’ve seen the bagpipe scene become even more international and diverse and one of the things I love about the whole bagpipe world is that it doesn’t matter how much money you have or how big your house is, pipers are judged only on how well they can play the tunes.

tany and Ireland – I’d never even heard the Galician Gaita before. I learned that most of my Scottish traditions were in fact shared traditions with similar people from across the world and I learned that although we all came from different countries and spoke different languages, music and bagpipes brought us all together in harmony. As a young 16-year-old from Falkirk, my eyes had been opened to the world. As people we had much more in common than differences and we should celebrate and appreciate our differences.

At a time in our history where politics are driving nations apart, I really wish the whole world would learn to play the bagpipes. Lorient Interceltique Festival - 4-13 August 2017



Heritage Magazine IS NOW INTERACTIVE!

As the official magazine of the Standing Council of Clan Chiefs, our mission is to reach as many Scots, members of the worldwide Scottish diaspora and fans of Scotland as possible. To fulfill this mission, Scots Heritage is now published in enhanced digital form.

This will also allow more people worldwide to read Scotland’s finest historical VIDEOS journal, and to do so at less cost.


With interactive features that will allow you to sample book chapters, hear music, see new video content and peruse a huge array of extra images, Scots Heritage – the leading Scottish history and heritage magazine – just got even better.


Tel: 01371 851868 Email:



piping.indd 145

06/06/2017 14:39:20

Image: Zillah Jamieson, Charles Jencks, Dr Dolina MacLennan.

SocialSCOTS Following a campaign that has captured the hearts and minds of the public across the globe, Mary Slessor and Maggie Keswick Jencks were unveiled as the first women to be commemorated in The Hall of Heroes at The National Wallace Monument in Stirling. To make the announcement Stirling District Tourism hosted a celebration at the National Wallace Monument.


social scene.indd 146

06/06/2017 14:42:31

Image: Dr. Dolina MacLennan, Dr. Alison McCall, David Black, Lorna Wilson, Ken Thomson, Zillah Jamieson.

Image: Dr Alison McCall, Cameron Brooks, Fiona Malcolm, Brenda Elwell Sutton

social scene.indd 147

06/06/2017 14:42:47

Image: Scott McMaster, Henk Berits, Gillian Macdonald.

Image: Brenda Elwell Sutton, Dona Robertson.

social scene.indd 148

06/06/2017 14:43:44

Image: Provost Mike Robbins, David Black, John Harrison, Charles Jencks.

Image: Rev. Dr Alasdair Black, Kyle Barrie, Mylene Smith-Herd

social scene.indd 149

06/06/2017 14:44:03


Puzzles... WHERE ARE WE?


1. The Scottish National gallery of Modern Art opens at Inverleith House in the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh on the 10th of August.

Part of the name of this coastal Lothian town means ‘Barley Farmstead’.It was the birthplace of famous golfer Charles D. Lawrie. Robert Louis Stevenson spent many happy holidays by the seaside here, and Fidra Island was meant to inspire Treasure Island. The John Muir Way runs through the town. The witch trials held here in 1590-1592 inspired Robert Burns to write Tam O’ Shanter. A yearly multi-arts festival is held every summer called Fringe by the Sea.

2. Ian Rankin, a crime writer most famously known for his character Inspector Rebus, is born on the 28th of April.

3. The Beatles play their first tour, as the Silver Beetles. A backing group for Johnny Gentle, they open at Alloa Town Hall and finish in Peterhead. The group at that time also includes Edinburgh born Stuart Sutcliffe.

WHO SAID? ‘Don’t meddle with other people’s ideas when you have all the work cut out of you in trying to express your own.’

WORD SEARCH Centenarian

How many English words can you make from the word above? We can find 451. Try to find as many as possible. Words must be at least three letters long.

4. Elvis Presley lands at Glasgow Prestwick Airport

on his way home to the United States from military service in Germany. His ancestor, Andrew Presley, migrated from Lonmay to North Carolina in 1745.

200 WORDS: good, 250 WORDS: excellent, 350 WORDS OR MORE: you are a genius 150

Untitled-15 150

06/06/2017 14:48:52

Answers: Where are we? North Berwick Who said it? Charles Rennie MacKintosh Guess the year 1960 151

Untitled-15 151

06/06/2017 14:49:12

Advertising Terms and Conditions: made where the error, misprint or omission does not materially detract from the advertisement. 08 Errors must be notified to the Publisher in writing within fourteen days of publication. In no circumstances shall the total liability of the Publisher for any error, misprint or omission exceed the amount of a full refund of any price paid to the Publisher for the particular advertisement in connection with which liability arose or the cost of a further or corrective advertisement of a type and standard reasonably comparable to that in connection with which liability arose. 09 The Advertiser/Advertising Agency agrees to indemnify the Publisher in respect of all costs, damages or other charges falling upon the publication as the result of legal actions or threatened legal actions arising from the publication of the advertisement in any one or more of a series of advertisements published in accordance with copy instructions supplied to the publication in pursuance of the Advertiser/ Advertising Agency order. 10 Adverts under the value of ÂŁ75 must be paid on acceptance of order by the Publisher. All advertising on a credit basis must be agreed with the Publisher in advance. 11 Payment of any invoice raised by the Publisher will be due 15 days from the date of invoice or as otherwise directed on the invoice. In the event of non-payment the Publisher may charge late payment interest at a rate of 2% and this is chargeable on a daily basis from the due date until the bill is paid. In addition the Publisher may charge a late payment levy of ÂŁ10 as an administration fee. In the event of late payment the Publisher reserves the right to disallow any discounts given and to raise an additional invoice for the discount which will be treated as though it has been raised with the original invoice. 12 A request to insert an advertisement assumes acceptance of our conditions. Photographs etc. must be accompanied by a SAE. Although every care will be taken, Scots Heritage is not responsible for loss, damage or any other injury as to material provided.

Your attention is drawn to the following terms and conditions which relate to the placing of advertisements in all publications owned by Wyvex Media Ltd. Parties to this agreement are the Publisher, Wyvex Media Ltd. on the one part and the Advertiser on the other part. The Publisher publishes newspapers, magazines, books and provides advertising space therein or provides for the delivery of advertising materials to the public within these publications. 01 Advertising copy shall be legal, decent, honest and truthful and comply with the British Code of Advertising Practice and all other codes. 02 The Publisher does not guarantee the insertion of any particular advertisement. 03 The Publisher reserves the right to cancel or alter the advertisement by giving reasonable notice. 04 An order for an advertisement shall be deemed to be made on acceptance of the advertisers’ order by the Publisher whether placed by telephone, mail, fax, email or in person. 05 Cancellations or postponements of orders must be notified in writing and cannot be accepted later than 30 days prior to the scheduled publication date. Cancellations not in accordance with these terms will be subject to payment of the full cost of the advert. Advertisments that are part of an agreed discounted campaign or series and have appeared prior to cancellation will be re-charged at full rate. 06 The parties submit to the jurisdiction of the Scottish Courts and Scots Law. In the event of any dispute or action by the Publisher to recover payment from an advertiser, it is agreed that matters will be settled in the Oban, Argyll Sheriff Court or such other Court as the Publisher may choose. 07 The Publisher shall not be liable for any loss or damage occasioned by any total or partial failure (however caused) of publication or distribution of any newspaper or edition in which any advertisement is scheduled to appear. In the event of any error, misprint or omission in the printing of an advertisement or part of an advertisement, the Publisher will either re-insert the advertisement or relevant part of the advertisement, as the case may be, or make reasonable refund or adjustment to the cost. No re-insertion, refund or adjustment will be 152

advertising terms.indd 152

06/06/2017 15:12:15



Choose to drink responsibly. © 2017 The BenRiach is a registered trademark, all rights reserved. *Category winning products in the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2016 Sc sum Ben riach.indd 153

06/06/2017 15:14:20

SCOTS Heritage Summer 2017  
SCOTS Heritage Summer 2017  

Official Magazine of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs