Lossiemouth.co.uk » Lossiemouth History http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk Just another WordPress weblog Mon, 02 Nov 2009 09:36:25 +0000 http://wordpress.org/?v=2.8.5 en hourly 1 Lossiemouth, Scotland http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/23/lossiemouth-scotland/ http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/23/lossiemouth-scotland/#comments Fri, 10 Jul 2009 18:51:25 +0000 admin http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/?p=23 Set at the mouth of the River Lossie on the beautiful coast of Scotland, the town of Lossiemouth is a busy port town. In the beginning, the town was to be a harbour for to help with its trading and house craftsmen, merchants, and builders. Over the years since it was established in the mid-1700’s, the new Lossiemouth has transformed from a small port town serving Elgin to a thriving port in its own right.

Lossiemouth is home to several examples of incredible architecture from different centuries. As you tour through the area, there are some landmark buildings that you cannot help but be drawn to. The history that permeats this area cannot help but be felt by those that visit Lossiemouth.

The Elgin Cathedral has parts that date from the 13th century as well as the best example of an octagonal chapter house in Scotland. The chapter house was constructed in the 15th century.

Unfortunately Duffus Castle was deserted in 1705 and is now in ruins. Andrew Moray burned the original motte-and-bailey castle to the ground in 1297. Duffus Castle was rebuilt as a more secure stone castle in the early 1300’s and was occupied until it was abandoned.

Originally built in the early 1200’s and rebuilt in the early 1400’s, Spynie Palace was the fortified seat of power for the Moray bishops for over 500 years. This impressive structure was left empty and uncared for from 1688. In recent years, Historic Scotland has undertaken restoration work on the palace.

Gordonstoun School is housed in an excellent example of 17th century architecture. This huge and magnificent building set on 150 acres was converted to coed school in 1934.

Covesea Skerries Lighthouse was designed by Alan Stevenson, the uncle of Robert Louis Stevenson, and was completed in 1846. The impetus to build the lighthouse stems from 16 ships being wrecked in a single storm during 1826.

Perhaps the most famous son of Lossiemouth is Ramsay Macdonald, the first Prime Minister from the Labour Party. He rose above the encumbrance of his illegitimacy, as well his poverty stricken beginnings to become a very visible and powerful political figure. He was unpopular for his outspoken views against the involvement of Britain’s involvement in World War 2 and his pacifist views led to his expulsion from the Moray Golf Club. His health in decline, he agreed to step down as Prime Minister in 1935 and subsequently passed away in 1937.

As with many towns and villages in Scotland, Lossiemouth has an amazing tapestry of history. In addition to the history, Lossiemouth offers so much diversity that there is something for everyone to do and see.

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Stotfield-Lossiemouth’s Roots http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/5/stotfield-another-of-the-lossiemouth-origins/ http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/5/stotfield-another-of-the-lossiemouth-origins/#comments Fri, 10 Jul 2009 04:52:53 +0000 admin http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/?p=5 Another of the villages that Lossiemouth has derived its origins from is Stotfield. The settlement of Stotfield has a few possible names, depending on which map and from which period of time those maps are from. Some have it listed as Stotfold, or Stodfauld. In the English of the day, it meant “Horse Fold”. Bearing in mind that name, one can tell it was an area in which horse breeders found a paradise, many had brought their horses to, or quite possibly an area of naturally occurring herds of them. The fact that it was not a Scottish name giving the origin to the city has definitely led to the popular conclusion by historians that it was a settlement settled by foreigners and not those from the native land.

The town existed in the Medieval times mostly as a farming community, containing some very small fishing operations. Though the farming was initially superior, as the population grew, so did the need for a more constant income. Fishing operations grew to meet that need, overtaking the overall farming after a short period. The two industries eventually settled into a dual specialty in the area of both farming and fishing. Some time later though, the fishing industry was impacted by religious initiatives brought into play, but even then the town seemed to subsist on the easily bartered goods of fish and farm products.

For anti-heathen reasons, one practice that had been banned, or at least attempted to be restricted, was the carrying of torches aboard vessels on New Years Eve. It was determine to be proof of how the area still believed in superstitions and idolatry. Those in power believed that the carrying of the torches on New Years Eve meant that the citizens held those idols and superstitions in the same high regard as church practices. In the early 18th century, this information was recorded in the Kinneddar Parish Kirk Session minutes as power being held by Magistrates to fine church parishioners for going against the law and code of the church, a unique situation in this small area.

The area also had a catastrophic incident that is forever remembered. In 1806, Christmas day, every male that was was out on boats fishing when a sudden storm rolled in. All the ships in the small fleet were destroyed and every able bodied adult and adolescent male from the town was killed. The official accounts of this tragedy show that 2 elderly males were spared. It’s a folk memory that is especially retained by the fishermen of the area to this day.

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Lossiemouth’s Origins in Kinneddar http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/3/lossiemouth%e2%80%99s-origins-in-kinneddar/ http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/3/lossiemouth%e2%80%99s-origins-in-kinneddar/#comments Fri, 10 Jul 2009 04:31:06 +0000 admin http://www.lossiemouth.co.uk/?p=3 Lossiemouth’s origins have been derived from five separate and distinct communities that were in the immediate area. These communities were Lossiemouth, Branderburgh, Seatown, and the ancient towns of Kinneddar and Stotfield. The roots deep into the past has helped to give Lossiemouth its character.

Existing in what some would call a shambles currently, the original nature of the lands comprising the town of Kinneddar have disappeared since their original formation. In the past, when the settlements were first formed in the area, they were called “Ferm Touns”. Essentially a collective of settlements and domiciles in a group to denote structure. The original placement of those facilities are now long gone. In current existence are evidence of a Pictish settlement having been in the area, as well as many large carved stone pieces. Dating these has placed the lands of Kinneddar to approximately the 8th or 9th century. Most likely a Christian continuance of the original faith, due to there having been many crosses found in the area as well.

The origin of the name, the town’s namesake is somewhat indiscernible. Richard, the bishop of the area at that time, resided there and established the diocese’s cathedral church in Kinneddar. Maps from the 16th century point out this farming community to have been named King Edwards, however the taking of the name from King Edward has been disputed by the Scottish National Library. Edward did stay in the facilities in the area though for a short while when traversing the country, showing that he had an iron grip on the area and everything was in control. It is thought that Kinneddar was likely misinterpreted as King Edward.

At that time, the castles at Elgin, Duffus and Kinneddar were English garrisoned. Robert the Bruce seized and capitalized upon King Richard’s preoccupation with matters in France and England by invading the area. This led to Bruce typically invading each castle, one after the other, and burning them completely to the ground. He was seeking to purge the English influence from the lands. Repelled twice at Elgin castle, he finally succeeded and the place was sacked. The Bishop of Moray’s assistance to Robert the Bruce led to the King excommunicating Bishop. Fleeing east to Norway, the Bishop of Moray later came back after Edward’s death. The village of Kinneddar remained fairly large up until the early 1800s, when it started fading away and merging with the eastern settlement of Lossiemouth.

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