News Archive - January 2001

Maternity Wake Up Time
The long awaited review process began today and Jamie Stone, MSP has come out urging everyone to write about their concerns regarding possible down-grading of the services in the Far north.  Make sure you direct your letters to the enquiry via Highland Maternity Services Advisory Group,   Highland Health Board, Beechwood, Inverness.  By all means write to other people but make sure the advisory group gets a copy.

Cold and Sunny in Caithness
Agility was in to deliver fuel on a lovely crisp day yesterday.  Flat calm in the harbour and not a wave in sight outside.

News Page Overhaul
The continuously updating news on Caithness.Org has been expanded yet again and tidied up as we have now completed our trials in various methods of bringing news onto the site with the least possible time involved as we are busy on other pages.

Timewasters Links
Some new links in here for those of you with time on your hands.  Don't spend too long here as the title says its a waste of time but maybe while you drink a cup of coffee you can have a laugh.

More Watten
Here we have the Old Station House.  More Watten  and nearby areas coming soon.

Loch Watten Under Ice
It may not look it in the clear blue sky and sunshine but Loch Watten had Half an inch of ice today.

Rainbows Over Wick Today

Wick High 1972 Reunion Pictures
This reunion took place in October 2000 and we now have a link to the web site with pictures from the event.  If anyone else is thinking about organising a reunion then let set up your FREE pages to help people find out about it.  It really works in spreading the word around the world as more people are logging on every week.

Genealogy Poems
Caithness.Org is not a genealogy site but as we get Bits and Pieces this is where they will go in our Family History section.  These will bring a smile on even if you are not into the topic.

UK Educational News
Educational News for the UK is now updating on the Educational Resources Links Page.

UK Black Interest News
Another Updating News section added to the Race Relations Links.

UK Political News & Links
Now upgraded to bring you even more updating news links on the political scene in the UK along with many sources of information.  If you are not interested in the Mandelson Affair wait till tomorrow.

Mental Health News
Lots of stories feeding in to the page beside the links.

Squash News

What's that to to do with Caithness?  Well its another page in our increasing Kids Links.   Helping you to find resources to help your child to read.  The page forms part of our increasing Kids Links as we scour the net to find useful sites to add to our listings.

Pass It On
Another new section for you to pass on tips about how to do things, save money and generally make life easier.  We have started it off with links to various pages and sites we think will be useful.  over the coming months we want you to tell us about things you have found for useful advice.  Whether its a telephone helpline, recipe, web site, news or other handy tips send it is and we will check it out before we PASS IT ON.

Cromarty Bridge Takes You Nearer Caithness
 The long sweep of the Cromarty Bridge speeds the trip north.  Keep your eyes peeled for birds of prey and seals.  there are a few here but even more the further north you go.

Caithness Plant Records From 1976
For all you plant hunters out there this article and others coming in the series may help you to get an idea of the plants growing in Caithness.  Blue Speedwell mentioned as first recorded in 1973 now fills Argyle Square in Wick every spring and yet was unknown in the UK in the 1920's.

Additional Miller Pictures and Military Page

All Calm at Last
Finally the wind lessened after nearly a week of heavy weather and the sea was flat today.

Oldwick & Berriedale Castles
The history of the two castles are joined in this article giving the low-down on the Cheynes, Sutherlands of Duffus and the Oliphants.  And did you know the Norsemen seem to have treated Wick as the Riviera, spending the winter here according to the earlier Sagas. Wow!! We Wikings ar tuf.

Laidhay Croft Museum
Thanks to Margaret Bates for another picture of Laidhay Croft Museum.  Caithness has several museums showing different aspects of life in earlier periods.  This combined with North Highland Archive makes it possible to find out what went on through the ages.

East End Boys Football - 10 Years Ago?
Wick's East End Football Club is possibly one of the most successful boys football clubs in the Highlands.  Always on the look out for volunteers to keep them successful.  If you have some free time why not give them a call.  If you have any names for the picture send them in.

Multiple Stone Rows in Caithness and Sutherland
Second in the series on stone rows in Caithness with several diagrams. The first article on the stone rows complements this one.

Wick Scouts Reunion Poems On Old Days
You don't need to be a scout to bring on a smile at these Caithness dialect poems about "e' scouts in Week"

New Section for the Wick High School Reunion
To keep things in better order a new set of pages have now been built for the Wick High reunion.  We are now ready for more pictures and we hear a few are already winging there way here.  Other reunion pages will be upgraded shortly.

More Olrig House Pictures

Another Place On The Way to Caithness
The Kessock Bridge leaving Inverness gives a spectacular start with views over the river Ness on your way to Caithness.

Greenland White-Fronted Goose
Caithness and Islay are the only two places in Scotland to see this bird that is subject to strict conservation measures.  There are several sites in the county where they over-winter with Greylag and Pink-footed geese.  A survey is under way to establish the level of the population that uses Caithness.

More New Pictures in the Reunion Section

More Miller Pictures in Family History

Another Caithness Family History Page
Do you connect to this information for Mowat, Lyall, Thomson or Sutherland?

Caithness Mobile Library At Mey
A mobile workplace delivering its books around the villages and remote parts of Caithness.  Lorna Ross gets her books from Robin Inglis relief librarian today.

Calmer Weather Today After The Storms
4.00pm Today

More Scout Pictures In
And more on the Main Page
Scouts picture of the first Herring Queen Isobel Cormack in 1937.  Scout is the Rev Sutherland and in the far left William Mackenzie brother of Ian who ran wick scouts for many years and is now helping to organise the reunion.

Viscount Thurso of Ulbster (Sir Archibald Sinclair)
His Contribution as Secretary Of State For War 1940 - 1945

A leading Caithness figure who assisted Churchill to fight the air war.

Did you know it cost £8 to build those 365 steps down the cliff at Whaligoe, Caithness in the late 1700's.  One of the most spectacular pathways in Scotland. In 1967 Minnie Ryrie who emigrated to Canada in 1910 could still remember the fishermen and their wives carrying everything up the cliff in the early 1900's.

Two Tales Of The Caithness Bishops
Blood and gore in the 12th and 13th century in Caithness.  Who needs movies when you have history books with the these true stories in them.

Parsley & Carrots
This article will help you know your parsley if not you onions.  And did you know wild carrots can be found in North Sutherland? 

Names of 84 out of 89 in the picture identified
Late 1940's Picture - Wick Scouts Reunion.  We now bring you the identity of most people in yesterdays picture.  A grid with numbers allows you to pick them all out then refer to the list below the grid.  Or pick a name and work back to the picture to the person concerned.

Storm Continues Today in Caithness

More Postcards From The Miller Family
The Millers from Caithness certainly got around in the early 1900's as our growing range of postcards show. The one here is the Bishop's Tower in Kirkwall, Orkney Islands.  More inside and many more to come.

George Baikie, Joe Leith, Johnny Yuill 1939
More pictures in reunion pages.

New Wick Scout Reunion Pages
Were you a scout in Wick under Johnny Yuill in the 30's, 40's, 50's or 60's.  Put 2nd August in your diary for the big Scout Reunion in Wick.  It's during Gala Week the day before another school reunion.  Looks like Wick Gala week will be busier than ever.  We will be publishing more pictures over the coming weeks with names where possible.  A letters and email page has been set up for all of you to get in touch.  Lots more to come.

Caithness Week of Storms
Caithness and the north of Scotland was battered with gales yesterday and today.  Forecast is - more to come.  Business as usual.  Don't put the wellies away just yet.

Illusions in Kids Links
Hey kids you better get to this list of links before the adults because they are really great.  So great we have listed them in the Big Links list as well in case they want to find them again.  All sorts of illusions to keep you going for weeks. 

Caithness.Org Free Courses Online
We are in the process of a major reorganisation of the FREE courses you can find on Caithness.Org.  Check out the new section where we are bringing together links to new courses and set up a new link to  New course material will now feed into the pages of Caithness.Org.  The old links page will remain until we bring the information into the new section.

Virtual Tourist
In the Links Section we are building links to Virtual Tourist.  So if you want to find out about a place before you visit you can see comments from people who have been.  See pictures or send thousands of postcards.  Join yourself and put in your own comments.  All of our country links pages will have the link.  So now you can get  updating news and in some weather information as well as see changing pictures every time you visit.  Try Africa, Finland, France, Mexico, USA.  There are many more already in place.

Robert Maclennan MP - Freedom of Caithness

River Thurso Near Braal Castle At Halkirk
The salmon season has opened on the Thurso River and the traditional dram got it off to a good start last week.  Caithness has plenty of fishing in Rivers, Streams, Lochs and Sea on two coasts.

370 Million Year Old Fossil
Achanarras Quarry, Spittal was the place for this unique find. 

Many More Map Links In the A to Z
A bigger range of links to zoomable maps have been added to the A to Z

Sinclair Street, Halkirk
Cold but sunny in Halkirk last Saturday.  A bit wet today but we want to cheer you up not dampen things down.  We will save the rainy pictures for the weather pages.

Which Way Did the Great Glen Fault Move?
One for the Geographers and Geologists or anyone interested in what pushed the north of Scotland around millions of years ago. 

Latest From the Reunions

From Olrig Hill Looking Over Castletown

More Olrig House Pictures
Further pictures have been added to The First Set also.  there are many more both more current and early 1900 pictures to follow with more about the history. 

Ladies and Quangoes
Did you know that women are very under represented on Government Quangoes.  Here is an article from the papers today that should make you think if you are qualified to apply for some of these jobs.

Playtime Page
Here is another set of links for kids in our fast expanding selection in Kids Links.  The Play Time Links are all for fun and you will be amazed at what you can find.  We have done the searching kids .  Now you can go and play with them.

Caithness Squash Clubs
Jane Cormack has built a new web site for information about the Thurso and Wick Squash Clubs.  So get those rackets out next season and get back in practice.  Full membership details are on the pages.

Caithness Garden Art
Caithness Gardens have an amazing amount of items in them once you start looking.  Here is a new page we will add to over time.

Caithness Folklore and Customs
A collection of Folklore and Customs from Miss H Munro.  Some you will know and others you may have forgotten since you were very young.  

Places On the Way To Caithness
If you are planning to come to Caithness for as few days we thought you might like to see some of what you might pass on the road to get here.  So here is the one that conveniently links to an earlier article on Dunrobin Castle in Sutherland, the county south of us. 

UK Information
We have been building this page for a while but it was buried in the Links section.  If you want a Telephone Number, Yellow Pages, Train Timetable and so you usually want it in a hurry. So the button on this page left column will take you there faster.  The section contains a growing list of useful sites for information.  We will add more.

The Mill At Achingale, Watten
Another bright day in Caithness and the icy weather continues.

Reunion Pictures for 70-77 Gallery
The way they were just a few years ago.

Caithness.Org Meets Rural Affairs Minister
Bill Fernie of Caithness.Org with Ross Finnie, Minister for Rural Affairs in Inverness on Monday when he met a group from the Highland voluntary sector to discuss their problems and launch the report "Services In Rural Scotland" looking at how services are to be delivered in the future.

Latheron Village Hall Completed
Hall completed and Burns Supper lined up.

"What's On" Improvements
Want to know immediately What's On today every day.  Well now you can see what has been notified to us.  You will get Today's What's On as soon as you hit the page.  Let people know what events you have coming by putting it on the page.  It is easy to complete the online submission form and its FREE.

Ariel Pictures Of Olrig House And Area
Ariel views of Olrig House and area.  Pages on the buildings, history, people and lots of pictures with more to come.  See the pictures first or Go To The Introduction Page.

Swimming Pool Child Supervision Update
The present position summed up as everyone awaits the next report.

Ross Institute - Halkirk

1905 Postcard To Canada From Wick We think.
Another few cards in the Miller Family History. Can anyone positively identify the street?

An Earlier Reunion Picture From 1991
One group has sent in an earlier photo.  How many do you know?

North Highland Archive Newsletter Jan - Mar 2001
Check out just some of the work volunteers have been doing in the Archive, new material added and a new FREE contact service via the newsletter for contacting lost relatives or friends.  A useful supplement to the Caithness.Org Message Boards for Caithness folk.

Early Postcards From and To Caithness
Starting today we begin a page in the Miller family history with postcards from and to Caithness by members of the family and friends in the early 1900s. Above is the Wireless Telegraphy Station, Newton, Wick more recently known as The Radio Station closed just a couple of years ago.  Postcards to come are of various places in the UK, Orkney and Canada all about the same period.  More to follow.

Wick Radio Station as it is Today
Having seen the Radio Station above in the early part of last century we thought you might like to see it at 11.30am today.  A few pictures of the station and surroundings.  Still used but now automated and controlled from Stonehaven.

Reunion Organisers Make Great Private Eyes
Janis and Mandy in different countries are getting the information on where all their schoolmates have gone over the years.  New listings are increasing with every email.  check out the latest to see who has been found now.  Any others not on send an email to the addresses listed.

Biggest Caithness Construction Starts in 2001
Another photo opportunity looms for Caithness.Org as the new terminal at Scrabster gets closer.  Caithness to Orkney journey time will shrink when the new bigger ferry starts in 2002 with extra sailings each day.  Caithness.Org will bring you pictures of the progress.

Free Advertising of Caithness Events
With small budgets can you let this opportunity pass?  Caithness.Org offers free advertising in our What's On pages of events, coffee mornings, shows, school items or anything run by a charity or non-profit group in Caithness.  All you have to do is enter it in the Submission form on the pages.  Takes two minutes and its FREE.  Get your event seen this year by the growing numbers on the Internet.

Caithness Judo Club - Near Record Membership
Junior membership was at a high level in 2000.  This popular club in Thurso had 27 juniors and 12 seniors.  Caithness has no shortage of Martial Arts Clubs as can be seen in the Sports Section.  So if you want to get fit before winter is done check them out or pick another group if it seems to arduous.

Kids Pictures on Caithness.Org
Its completely empty at present.  So here is your chance to let us know what you are doing. Send us your pictures by email (jpeg format if possible) or by post and we will enter them in our new section).  Childrens organisations show what you are up to and let people thinking about joining your group see what you do each week.  Schools can get in here with projects and let everyone have a look.  Just get in touch and show the world. 

Network 21 Initiative
Does you group have an idea which might help build a more sustainable community and need some help or a small grant?  Then check out this information on our Funding Page.  Your group may qualify under a range of headings including waste, local transport, young people, renewable energy, health, housing, environment and more.

Found Any Wrecks Recently?
Ever wondered what would happen to that pile of gold coins you find on the beach when out walking the dog?  Well here is what you do.....

Women's Links
If you have not checked our growing listings for a while have a look at our recent additions.  Let us know of any good ones you have found to add to our list.

A Possible Site For Monastery At Murkle
G Watson sets out the evidence for the existence of the monastery in the 1976 bulletin from the Field Club.

Another East End Football Club Picture
Another picture from the walls of East End Boys Club.  Does anyone out there know when it was taken or have a list of names to add to the page.

Free Educational Courses
Another batch of free online courses today - a FREE typing course, Bridge Lessons for all levels and an online book on  Intellectual Trends of The Twentieth Century.

People First
This recently formed group for adults with learning difficulties is looking for a volunteer to assist them with their meetings.  If you would like to help  and find out what is required the contacts are on the People First Page.

Scottish Newsfeeds
We have now found improved news feeds for Scottish News and combined this page with links to Scottish Newspapers.  So if you want to browse Scottish current affairs or current news check our page - Scottish News.  The Scottish News is also in News Feeds

Search Engines in Foreign Languages
With the increasing visitor numbers to Caithness.Org we have noted those of you coming in from overseas.  We have added Google search engines in foreign languages to a number of pages in the Links Section.  For example China, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain.  You can also pick up automatic translation services which once activated will follow you round the site  - try it in the A to Z or a Walk in Wick.

Dunrobin Castle - The Earls And Dukes of Sutherland
A fascinating essay from the Field Club in the series Historic Castes and Families of the North.  This portrayal of an important Sutherland family shows influences and connections into Caithness.

Human Remains at Murkle 1981
Jack Saxon reported in the Field Club Bulletin about this discovery ploughed up at Murkle Bay.

Caithness Lepidoptera
Moths and Butterflies by R I Lorimer in the October 1981 Field Club Bulletin.

Castletown Drawing
A small picture from the 1981 Field Club Bulletin showing Castletown when the Post Office was part of the St Clair Hotel. 

More High Street Pictures
A few more pictures of High Street, wick with more to come in future weeks.

Market Square Pictures

Extracts From The Caithness Courier 1866
A Visit To The Thurso Benevolent Institution.  Notes From Castletown.  Thurso River

Links - Ever Upwards
Lots of additions this week including new countries with newsfeeds.  Weather forecasts added to many sections.  Also One Minute Golf Lesson Videos - a new one every week from now on.  Daily Horoscope Links

More Historical Nuisance Reports
August 1896 to October 1899 - reports from the Inspector's book showing the problems they dealt with back then.

New Reunions Section
Due to the outstanding success of a couple of reunions in contacting people via pages we have decided to improve the section.  Reunions will now have their own section and main index page.  Each reunion can have its own section and information pages.  The main page will show the year, school or organisation and organiser as a lead in to the appropriate reunion to make it easy to find.  If you are planning a reunion in Caithness it has never been easier and your pages are FREE.  Just get in touch and we will put up your information.

More Pictures
Girnigoe Street and High Street pages now set up.  Further pictures may be added as they become available.

Kids Photo Features 2001
We know that pictures of views are not what Caithness Kids want - you have all seen them before.  So here is a different page for all the pictures for young people in one place.  No fixed ideas and you can have anything you like on it.  Just suggest a few ideas and we will see what we can do.  Send in your favourite picture and get it on the web.  Your garden, pet, holiday snaps or places you have been recently. Email your ideas or pictures to 

Business Pages Gearing Up
Further improvements to the Business Pages now make them faster than ever before. will continue to build the database of FREE pages for Caithness businesses.  This year we aim to get every business in the county on the site with its own free page.  Let us know if your business is not already in and send us the details via our submission form online.  Its easy and its FREE.

Photo Features Page 2001
Some of this years new pictures will go into the new Photo Features section.  Last years page will remain in place but most of the pictures can be found in many of the 4000 pages on the site.  First into this years photo features is a picture of every main building in Bridge Street, Wick.  To add to the information we have included a detailed set of the carvings and statues on one Bank Building.  Have you noticed these before?

Caithness.Org breaks New Records in December
The numbers of pages being viewed from Caithness.Org continues to climb.  December was the busiest month yet with 107,876 pages downloaded.  Visitors from 63 countries was also a new record.  The Business Pages are not even included in these totals for December having been shifted to a new web site.  The combined totals are even higher.  So thanks to you all for looking in.

Happy New Year
Wick brought in the New Year in the cold wind but still had a great time.  Market Square was busy but not until about 11.30pm.  The Bignold Park had its traditional bonfire and at least kept warm on one side.


Caithness.Org on Facebook