Saturday, 23 Mar 2013 by Chris
Every Scottish parish reflects some aspect of the country's historical and social development,from prehistory to the present day. Innerwick, a parish in East Lothian admirably does that. To the south of Dunbar,the parish rises from the coast on the North Sea and rich agricultural land, to the sheep and grouse moors of the Lammermuir Hills.East coast lines of communication by road and rail from Edinburgh to London straddle the parish,though 'the great road' has now been downgraded to the plain A1.
Last week after delivering a family tree to a client in East Lothian,I spent time exploring the village and parish of Aberlady. Situated on the shore where the Peffer Burn enters Aberlady Bay,the village and surrounding area are full of history.The bay has always been a natural landing point for ships and Anglo Saxons soon settled here once the Romans had departed.Later it grew to become the port for the neighbouring town of Haddington,five miles inland.
Last week I visited Inverness and Grantown-on-Spey and rather than take the usual route down the A9 to Carrbridge, I drove through Nairn.Following the route of the old military road from Fort George,built following the failed Jacobite rebellion of 1745, look out for a sign to Ardclach (Gaelic:High stony ground). A series of single track roads follow the river Findhorn upstream as it flows through 13 miles of the parish on its journey to the Moray Firth.
Heading south 11 miles from Edinburgh,the A68 follows an almost straight line bypassing Dalkeith as it climbs towards Soutra only to descend into Lauderdale, a historic route to the Border with England.This is no coincidence for it closely aligns with the Roman Dere street that connected Hadrian's Wall with the Roman fort at Inveresk. Approaching Pathhead,a Telford Bridge crosses the River Tyne unnoticed,as the main route runs through the village.
Dalmeny parish and village are sandwiched between Edinburgh and South Queensferry.Bisected from north to south and bypassed by major routes of communication;commuters driving from the Forth Road Bridge to Edinburgh have few signs they are passing through the parish.However their fellow rail travellers may stop infrequently at Dalmeny station, as they're approaching or leaving the iconic Forth Rail Bridge.
The most southerly of East Lothian's parishes,Oldhamstocks stretches 7 miles inland,gradually ascending from sea level into the Lammermuirs.Barely 2-3 miles in breadth it has an unusual dogleg shape as it follows the border with neighbouring Berwickshire to the south east.Bisected by the A1 road and east coast railway to England, it's former castle was the first resting place for James VI as he headed south for London in 1603 to claim the throne.
Many years ago I attended a scout camp at Stobo and remember the walk along the B712 to collect water in an old milk churn. Returning today little appears to have changed. The scattered group of houses 6 miles south west of Peebles make up the village within a parish of 7 by 5 miles .
Few have heard of Morham parish,yet it can claim to be the smallest rural parish by population and area in Scotland.Situated a few miles to the south of Haddington,midway beween the Lammermuirs and the sea,it is barely 2 miles in length and 1 mile in breadth. The population fluctuated around 200 across several decades.
The Scottish Government and First Minister Alex Salmond have announced funding of £1,000,000 towards restoring the country's *war memorials*[http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-21013594].
Edinburgh city archive have released news on their latest developments.One of these is the start of the project to digitise Edinburgh's old burial records. The plan is to eventually place them on ScotlandsPeople. A similar project is underway for Glasgow.Further information at *Edinburgh*[http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/cityarchives] city archive*[http://http//www.edinburgh.gov.uk/info/428/archives/241/whats_new_at_edinburgh_city_archives]*
New Year is often a time for planning the future and for reflection on times past. This Hogmanay I walked round some old haunts in Corstorphine, the suburb of Edinburgh where I lived for eighteen years. Corstorphine was a village and parish until it was incorporated into the city of Edinburgh in 1920. Map of Corstorphine Parish Google
Almost 39,000 names have been added by www.deceasedonline.com and Scottish Monumental Inscriptions to their ever growing database.The following Fife burial grounds and cemeteries are included.
A CANADIAN holidaymaker revealed he only discovered his ancestor built the notorious Bear Gates at Traquair when he visited the area on holiday...
On Friday 18th May 2012, Alex Salmond the First Minister of Scotland unveiled two memorials to the men killed in the construction of the Forth Rail Bridge. Located at either end of the bridge in North and South Queensferry,the cast bronze memorials bear the names, ages and occupations of 73 men,known as 'briggers'. Around the base are the the words:
A distinctive Scottish surname of numerous spellings: Creighton,Crighton,Crichten, which is of territorial origin from the barony of Crichton in Midlothian. The earliest recorded witnessed a charter by King David c.1128
Only half a dozen Scottish surnames start with the letter 'V',so where did this unusual name originate and is it Scottish?