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Not a horror at all

Not a horror at all

This might seem like a location for a horror movie, but I was walking along Berryden Road in Aberdeen and going at a fair clip because it looked as if storm clouds were gathering and I had taken no coat. I glanced across the road and saw demolition work progressing on the old part of the Royal […]

Looking for Doric detectives

Looking for Doric detectives

A few weeks ago, I was approached privately by a reader who wanted to know if I could help her trace the origins of a Doric saying. She had done her detective best, but had drawn a blank. I promised I would enlist the help of the Doric mafia throughout the North-east to see if we […]

Genius of Davie Do-Aathing

Genius of Davie Do-Aathing

I was leafing through someone else’s wonderful library of old Aberdeen-related books the other day. The collection had been gathered by two, possibly three generations for most of the 20th century. In one, I came upon a little-known story from Aberdeen’s past; from 1610 to be precise. Aberdeen had ambitions to be a trading port […]

Memories of Dufftown: 1978

Memories of Dufftown: 1978

This month’s old photograph of North-east Scotland comes from Dufftown. The note on the slide tells me that it was taken in June, 1978. It shows the town from the west, looking east, down the slope of Conval Street towards the town centre. This was the view that greeted drivers arriving from Glenlivet and Tomintoul. The changes […]

Cabrach remembers its war dead

Cabrach remembers its war dead

Back in February, 2014, I helped in a BBC programme which documented the sacrifices made by rural Scotland in wartime. My segment consisted of a tribute to the many hundreds of men and boys from the Cabrach, roughly that triangle bounded by Dufftown, Rhynie and Lumsden, who gave their lives in World War I. You […]

All in the delivery

All in the delivery

I was chatting with an accomplished reciter of poetry last weekend. Frank is the go-to man if you need a poem delivered by a pro, but we had a minor difference of opinion on the performance of one of my favourite Doric poems: Bennachie, by Charles Murray. Frank subscribes to the view that it’s a stirring […]

Union Terrace in 1960

Union Terrace in 1960

This month’s old photograph shows Union Terrace, Aberdeen, in about 1960, I think, judging from the fashions, the signage and, most of all, the cars. You can just about make out at this resolution that the road surface is still cobblestones (cassies or granite setts in Aberdeen parlance). The awning of the Caledonian Hotel hands […]

Aberdeen Airport : 1979

Aberdeen Airport : 1979

This month’s archive photo proves how much Aberdeen has been transformed from a middle-ranking commercial city to an international business destination. This is Aberdeen Airport in November, 1979. The oil boom was very much under way, and the airport had been expanded well beyond the array of Portakabins on the Dyce side of the airfield in […]

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