Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh

21 June 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

© Chabe01/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Chabe01/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Palace of Holyroodhouse, commonly referred to as Holyrood Palace, is the official residence of the British monarch in Scotland, Queen Elizabeth II. Located at the bottom of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, at the opposite end to Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Palace has served as the principal residence of the Kings and Queens of Scots since the 16th century, and is a setting for state occasions and official entertaining. Queen Elizabeth spends one week in residence at Holyrood Palace at the beginning of each summer, where she carries out a range of official engagements and ceremonies. The 16th-century Historic Apartments of Mary, Queen of Scots and the State Apartments, used for official and state entertaining, are open to the public throughout the year, except when members of the Royal Family are in residence.   read more…

Theme Week Scottish Borders – Hawick

27 October 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Dovemount Place © - Walter Baxter/cc-by-sa-2.0

Dovemount Place © – Walter Baxter/cc-by-sa-2.0

Hawick is a town in the Scottish Borders council area and historic county of Roxburghshire in the east Southern Uplands of Scotland. It is 10.0 miles (16.1 km) south-west of Jedburgh and 8.9 miles (14.3 km) south-southeast of Selkirk. It is one of the farthest towns from the sea in Scotland, in the heart of Teviotdale, and the biggest town in the former county of Roxburghshire. Hawick’s architecture is distinctive in that it has many sandstone buildings with slate roofs. The town is at the confluence of the Slitrig Water with the River Teviot. Hawick is known for its yearly Common Riding, for its rugby team Hawick Rugby Football Club and for its knitwear industry.   read more…

Theme Week Scottish Borders – Peebles

26 October 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Tweed Bridge © Kjetil Bjørnsrud/cc-by-2.5

Tweed Bridge © Kjetil Bjørnsrud/cc-by-2.5

Peebles is a royal burgh in Peeblesshire, of which it is the county town, within the Scottish Borders region with a population of 8,400. In 2014 Creative Scotland named Peebles the most creative place of its size in Scotland, presenting the town with a Creative Place Award and £100,000 to enhance arts events, festivals and arts commissions. Most arts performances take place in the Eastgate Theatre on the High Street which has a year-round programme of music, drama, dance, talks and classes for children and adults. The town also has four major annual festivals – the Beltane Festival, Peebles Arts Festival, Tweedlove Bike Festival and Imaginarium.   read more…

Theme Week Scottish Borders – Melrose

25 October 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Market Square © - Walter Baxter/cc-by-sa-2.0

Market Square © – Walter Baxter/cc-by-sa-2.0

Melrose is a small town and civil parish in the Scottish Borders, historically in Roxburghshire. It is in the Eildon committee area. The town’s name is recorded in its earliest form as Mailros, ‘the bare peninsula’ (Old Welsh or Brythonic), referring to the original site of the monastery, recorded by Bede, in a bend of the river Tweed. The original monastery at Melrose is referred to in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle with the name Magilros. In the late Middle Ages, when the monastery had been re-founded in its present position, its name was symbolically represented by the visual pun of a mell (mason’s hammer) and a rose (symbolising the Virgin Mary, to whom all Cistercian abbeys were dedicated).   read more…

Theme Week Scottish Borders – Galashiels

24 October 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

© - Walter Baxter/cc-by-sa-2.0

© – Walter Baxter/cc-by-sa-2.0

Galashiels is a town in the Scottish Borders and historic county of Selkirkshire, on the Gala Water river. The name is often shortened to “Gala”. The town, with a population of around 12,600, is a major commercial centre for the Borders region. The town is known for textile making, and is the location of Heriot-Watt University‘s School of Textiles and Design, Galashiels Academy and one campus of the Borders College, which as of 2009 has moved and now joins with the University. Galashiels’ population grew fast through the textile trade with several mills. A connection with the town’s mill history, the Mill Lade, still links the town from near the site of mills at Wheatlands Road, to Netherdale, via Wilderhaugh, Bank Street, the Fountain and next to the Tesco/retail development Street.   read more…

Theme Week Scottish Borders – Selkirk

23 October 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Haining House © - Adam D Hope/cc-by-sa-2.0

Haining House © – Adam D Hope/cc-by-sa-2.0

Selkirk is a town and historic Royal Burgh in the Scottish Borders Council district of southeastern Scotland. It lies on the Ettrick Water, a tributary of the River Tweed. The people of the town are known as Souters, which means cobblers (shoe makers and menders). Selkirk’s population is at 5800.   read more…

Theme Week Scottish Borders

22 October 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Theme Weeks

Mellerstain House © - Steve Kent/cc-by-sa-2.0

Mellerstain House © – Steve Kent/cc-by-sa-2.0

The Scottish Borders is one of 32 council areas of Scotland. It borders the City of Edinburgh, Dumfries and Galloway, East Lothian, Midlothian, South Lanarkshire, West Lothian and, to the south-west, south and east, the English counties of Cumbria and Northumberland. The administrative centre of the area is Newtown St Boswells. The term Scottish Borders is also used to designate the areas of southern Scotland and northern England that bound the Anglo-Scottish border.   read more…

The Isle of Bute in the Firth of Clyde

21 May 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Arran mountains over Rothesay © - SeaDave/cc-by-2.0

Arran mountains over Rothesay © – SeaDave/cc-by-2.0

The Isle of Bute is an island in the Firth of Clyde in Scotland. It is divided into highland and lowland areas by the Highland Boundary Fault. Formerly a constituent island of the larger County of Bute, it is now part of the council area of Argyll and Bute. Bute’s resident population is at 6,500. Farming and tourism are the main industries on the island, along with fishing and forestry. The only town on the island, Rothesay, is linked by ferry (Caledonian MacBrayne ferries) to the mainland. To its north is the coastal village of Port Bannatyne; hamlets on the island include Ascog, Kilchattan Bay, Kerrycroy and Kingarth. The interior of the island is hilly, though not mountainous, with conifer plantations and some uncultivated land, particularly in the north. The highest point is Windy Hill at 278 metres (912 ft). The centre of the island contains most of the cultivated land, while the island’s most rugged terrain is found in the far south around Glen Callum. Loch Fad is Bute’s largest body of freshwater and runs along the fault line.   read more…

Portrait: Andrew Carnegie, steel magnate and philanthropist

21 February 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait

Andrew Carnegie © Library of Congress - Theodore C. Marceau

Andrew Carnegie © Library of Congress – Theodore C. Marceau

Andrew Carnegie was a Scottish-American industrialist, business magnate, and philanthropist during the Gilded Age. Carnegie led the expansion of the American steel industry in the late 19th century and is often identified as one of the richest people (and richest Americans) ever. He became a leading philanthropist in the United States, and in the British Empire. During the last 18 years of his life, he gave away about $350 million to charities, foundations, and universities—almost 90 percent of his fortune. His 1889 article proclaiming The Gospel of Wealth called on the rich to use their wealth to improve society, and stimulated a wave of philanthropy.   read more…

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