Scottish Snippets

22 February 2014

Number 654

The Scottish Snippets Newsletter in its original format began in April 1997 and continued in an unbroken series for 591 issues. Although no longer produced in that style, there is now this regular update on the new and updated pages on the Rampant Scotland site including "Scottie's Photo Diary From Scotland".

HotTo receive a text version of this newsletter as a reminder to look at these Web pages when they are published, just send an e-mail to with "Subscribe Newsletter" in the subject line.

Scottish Landscapes on Video

These days, there is a wealth of video on YouTube and other sites showing films of various aspects of Scotland's varied landscape and its wildlife. While some are short sequences taken by individuals, there is a growing number of professional films made by the BBC or commercial TV channels and others that have found there way onto the Internet. They are sometimes not easy to pin down, but to paraphrase the motto of the old "Mining Co" web site, "I mine the Web so that you don't have to!" So here's a page with links to sometimes hour-long videos of a wide range of professionally produced documentaries about Scotland's scenic beauty. If you were to watch all of them from start to finish it would take well over 24 hours! Note, however, that many of these videos cannot be downloaded to mobile phones or tablets or indeed downloaded for storage on a PC - they have to be played on a Web browser on a desktop PC or laptop. See: Scottish Landscapes on Video

Hallowmas (Halloween)

This was the celebration of the beginning of winter known in the time of the Druids as 'Samhain'. It was believed that the spirits of the dead came back to their old haunts at this time. Fires were lit to guide them home and to frighten away evil spirits. The dead were offered food and drink - a custom now perpetuated by children guising. For more on this Celtic festival including turnip lanterns and dooking for apples, see: Hallowmas (Halloween)

Lighthouses - Ailsa Craig

Ailsa Craig is an island in the Firth of Clyde, just offshore from Girvan, South Ayrshire. It is known as "Paddy's Mile Stone" as it lies halfway between the cities of Glasgow and Belfast. For many years the rock was quarried to make high quality stones for curling. See Lighthouses - Ailsa Craig

Lighthouses - Ardincaple Castle

Strictly speaking this is neither a castle nor an official lighthouse but a "castellated mansion" and a "navigational aid". For the explanation, see: Lighthouses - Ardincaple Castle

Lighthouses - Neist Point

Located on the North East corner of the Isle of Skye, An aerial cableway is used to take supplies to the lighthouse and cottages and this is still used to take supplies to the cottages which are now available as a self catering facility. See: Lighthouses - Neist Point

Lighthouses - Ardrishaig Point

Ardrishaig is a small lochside village at the eastern entrance to the Crinan Canal in Argyll in the west Scotland. It borders Loch Fyne to the south of Lochgilphead. See: Lighthouses - Ardrishaig Point

Lighthouse Letters from Sharma Krauskopf : Goodbye to Orbost

The sale of Orbost farm on Skye brings back memories of great times spent there. Such as the nights the electricity went out and they sat with only the warm glow of the coal fire and a kerosene lamp and talked about "our country does this." See: Goodbye to Orbost

Lighthouse Letters from Sharma Krauskopf : The Hogmanay Rose

Learning to experience the small treasures which come your way, such as the rose that was still blooming in winter snow. See: The Hogmanay Rose

Lighthouse Letters from Sharma Krauskopf The Trip of the Two Ladies

Two very different ladies (one very talkative and the other very quiet) making a train ride from Salisbury to Glasgow unforgettable. See The Trip of the Two Ladies

Whisky Connoisseur - Arthur J A Bell : Fine and Fiery

Here are some recommendations on books about whisky written by a wide range of authors such as Neil Gunn and Sir Robert Bruce Lockhart. See: Fine and Fiery

Whisky Connoisseur - Arthur J A Bell : The Drink of Kings

The royal pedigree of "The Glenlivet" from the days of Sir Walter Scott and the visit to Scotland by King George IV (in a kilt no less) in 1822. See: The Drink of Kings

Whisky Connoisseur - Arthur J A Bell : A Toast to "a Weel-loved Friend"

Toasts by Scottish poets such as Robert Burns, Robert Fergusson (that's his statue striding out on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh), William Souter and Hugh MacDiarmid to Whisky. See A Toast to "a Weel-loved Friend"

History of Scotland to 1400 : Apostles of the Scots, Picts and Britons

The major role of St Columba and Iona. Despite the reformation there are considerable numbers of churches dedicated to Columba (pictured here preaching to the Picts) in Scotland. See: Apostles of the Scots, Picts and Britons

History of Scotland to 1400 : Saints and Saints' Cults

Ninian, Columba, Adomnan and Kentigern. Unpicking the story of Scottish Christianity is a search for clues beyond the few hard facts that exist. See: Saints and Saints' Cults

Next Newsletter

The next newsletter is scheduled for 8 March.

Yours aye


Previous editions of this Newsletter are available in an Archive. The Index to the other pages of the Rampant Scotland site is available here.

Separator line

Where else would you like to go in Scotland?

Separator line