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Sally’s Tay Roots Stretch From Tasmania to Inverkeilor
Following the recent discovery that her great-great-great grandparents were from the Angus village of Inverkeilor, Sally Cornish, who is a drummer in the Tasmania Police Pipe Band, decided to squeeze in a visit to this part of Scotland between appearances at The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.
“My maternal great-great-great grandparents, John Hay and Margaret Jolly, married in Inverkeilor Church in 1829,” said Sally, who is from Hobart, Tasmania. “It was completely overwhelming to be in the village where my ancestors lived over 200 years ago.”
As Sally explored the kirkyard at Inverkeilor Church, she revealed that the church was the scene of a pivotal moment in her family’s history. “Research carried out by one of my Australian cousins discovered that, according to the Parish records of 1809, John Hay’s mother, Janet Doig, appeared in front of Inverkeilor’s Kirk Session after she confessed she was ‘with child’,” explained Sally.
“The records also note the father of Janet’s baby – also called John Hay – had run away to England and that, after she ‘confessed her repentance’, Janet was fined the considerable sum of £1.
“It’s strange to be standing in the church where Janet was publicly shamed for being pregnant, abandoned and alone.”
En-route to Inverkeilor, Sally stopped off at the Angus Archives, where 800 years of historical documents relating to the county are stored. “Thanks to the invaluable help of the team at the Angus Archives, including one of the volunteers, Grant, I also visited three farms between Arbroath and Montrose which feature in my family tree,” continued Sally.
“To look across fields where my ancestors once toiled, see the remains of the cottages where they may have lived and visit the village where they went to church was a surreal experience – and something I shall never forget. This visit – and the background information I received at the Angus Archives – has given such an insight into my ancestors’ lives.”
Sally explained that her great-great-great grandparents sailed to Australia with their four children in 1839. “The Hays settled in New South Wales but, two years later, moved to Tasmania,” said Sally, who has always been very aware of her family’s Scottish connection.
“I’ve always been so proud of my Scottish roots – and now I’ve seen where my forebears lived, I feel even more connected to my ancestral homeland and to my Hay ancestors.”
People from near and far who are keen to find out more about their family’s roots will be able to obtain advice, information and access to a wide range of resources at the Tayroots Family History Day at Angus & Dundee College in Arbroath on Friday, September 5. The Tayroots Family History Day, which is the opening event in this year’s Angus Heritage Week, will feature a highly-informative programme of workshops and talks, including how to use Kirk Session Records, the historical documents which provided vital information about Sally’s great-great-great-great grandmother, Janet Doig.
There will also be a talk about Montrose in the First World War by historian Dr Dan Paton and a talk by Caroline Brown, archivist at the University of Dundee, which will focus on the wealth of information available in historical hospital records.
Entrance to the Family History Day is free but, as previous Tayroots events have proved extremely popular, booking is advisable for the talks and workshops. To book, or to find out more about the Tayroots Family History Day on September 5, visit www.angusheritage.com/tayroots or call 01307 473226. To find out more about the many other events happening during Angus Heritage Week 2014, visit www.angusheritage.com/heritageweek or pick up a copy of the Angus Heritage Week Event Guide at leisure centres, ACCESS offices, libraries, museums and tourist attractions across Angus, Dundee, Perthshire, Aberdeenshire and Fife.
Arbroath Sea Fest brings fishing heritage to life
On Saturday, the Provost of Angus, Cllr Helen Oswald, spent the afternoon at Arbroath Sea Fest, where she found out first hand why the event was presented with the Angus Ambassador Tourism Award 2013 at the annual award ceremony.
After being met by Arbroath Sea Fest committee members Peter Donald and Alistair Martin, the Provost was given a tour of the bustling site, including a look behind the scenes, where she met event manager Eleanor Whitby of Red Pepper Events and Arbroath Sea Fest treasurer, Lynn Cameron.
“This weekend is the culmination of a year of planning and preparation,” Lynn told the Provost. “We pride ourselves on providing something for everyone, from the traditional fishing boats in the harbour to the sandcastle competition to the first Arbroath Sea Fest Strongman Competition.”
After looking round the many stalls, the Provost made her way to The Reaper, one of several restored fishing boats which had sailed to Arbroath to participate in the festivities. The Provost was welcomed on board by Ian Murray, retired fisherman and crew member of The Reaper, the Fife herring drifter which is the flagship of the Scottish Fisheries Museum in Anstruther.
Next stop for the Provost was Arbroath’s RNLI Lifeboat. RNLB Inchcape. “The commitment of the RNLI volunteers who crew the lifeboat and those who are involved in fundraising for the RNLI, including the Lifeboat Ladies Guild who sell cream teas at Sea Fest every year, is quite amazing,” said the Provost.
While listening to the Milenberg Jazz Band, Arbroath Sea Fest committee member Peter Donald explained to the Provost that the two-day event started in 1997, with the aim of highlighting the town’s maritime history and traditions, as well as providing a showcase for local organisations, community groups and businesses.
“Over the years, Arbroath Sea Fest has gained a reputation for being a great family day out and, as a result, attracts high numbers of visitors from across Scotland – as well as a sprinkling from further afield,” continued Peter. “As a result, Arbroath Sea Fest benefits the local economy while also enhancing the town’s reputation as a seaside destination. We were delighted when this was recognised in November 2013, when Arbroath Sea Fest was presented with the Tourism Angus Ambassador Award.”
As the Provost prepared to leave Arbroath Sea Fest, Fairweather Rigg Sea Shanty started singing on one of the two stages providing live music throughout the weekend. “Where else would you hear sea shanties being sung in their natural environment – by the sea?” asked the Provost. “There are so many different things to see and do at Arbroath Sea Fest.
“Arbroath Sea Fest is a great event for the local community, for local businesses and for Angus, while also giving the people of Arbroath and the surrounding area a chance to touch base with their fishing heritage, either by visiting one of these marvellous fishing boats or simply tucking into a freshly-made Arbroath Smokie.”
Below Fairweather Rig perform a Sea Shanty at Arbroath Sea Fest 2014
You can find out more about Fairweather Rig on Facebook here https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fairweather-Rig-Scotlands-Shantymen/592714444177743
See also The Limelight Company Flash Dance in the harbour http://dundeechannel.com/blog/limelight-flash-mob-arbroath-seafest-2014/
Click the photo below to play the video
LimeLight Flash Mob Arbroath Seafest 2014
Despite todays weather the show went on for the LimeLight Flash Mob performing at this weekend Seafest in Arbroath.
Arbroath Sea Fest is an annual festival of the Sea held along Arbroath’s seafront and centring around the town’s charming harbour and new marina.
Established in 1997, Sea Fest is a popular celebration of Arbroath’s marvellous maritime heritage, attracting over 30,000 visitors over its two-day duration in August each year.
The star of the show is undoubtedly the Arbroath Smokie – haddock smoked over hardwood – but past years have also seen trout specialities, suckling pig, venison and ostrich meat, available from the Smokie Trail, comprising 70-odd stalls along the harbour.
For those who enjoy a bit of retail therapy there is a wide range of stalls selling everything from fresh seafood to handmade jewellery, crafts and confectionery.
There will also be the regular Seafest features of traditionally smoked fish, traditional crafts, The Reaper will be in the Harbour, fishing displays, modern and traditional music.
Click the picture below to play the video
Arbroath Sea Fest Donates to Local Organisations
As preparations begin in earnest for Arbroath Sea Fest 2014, on Thursday, July 17, the committee responsible for this highly-successful annual event presented cheques to three local organisations – Arbroath Rugby Club, Arbroath Sea Cadets and 2422 (Arbroath) Squadron, Air Training Corps.
“This is our way of saying thank you to these groups for their invaluable assistance at last year’s Arbroath Sea Fest,” said Lynn Cameron, treasurer of Arbroath Sea Fest, which will take place at Arbroath Harbour on August 9/10, 2014.
“Arbroath Sea Fest is all about giving the 25,000 people who come along the best possible day out and showcasing the town’s fabulous businesses, organisations, live music, family entertainment and, of course, seafaring heritage – it’s not about fundraising,” stressed Lynn. “However, we have to cover the substantial and ever-rising costs of putting on such a massive event, while also building up a contingency fund for future Sea Fests, which is why we charge a small entrance fee and also charge stallholders.
“We are only too aware of the invaluable support provided to us by local organisations, whether they’re involved in entertaining the thousands of people who flock to Arbroath Harbour during the Sea Fest weekend or are involved in marshalling, collecting entrance fees or picking up litter. As a result, we like to donate any additional funds to voluntary groups who were involved in that year’s Arbroath Sea Fest and, over the years, Arbroath Sea Fest has donated thousands of pounds to a variety of highly worthwhile, and very helpful, local organisations.”
In recognition of their assistance at Arbroath Sea Fest 2013, Arbroath Rugby Club received a donation of £700, while Arbroath Sea Cadets and 2422 (Arbroath) Squadron, Air Training Corps each received a donation of £200.
“We’re delighted that the Air Cadets’ contribution to last year’s Sea Fest has been acknowledged by this very much-appreciated donation,” said Flight Sergeant Scott Ross, OC of 2422 (Arbroath) Squadron, Royal Air Force Air Cadets.
For more information about Arbroath Sea Fest 2014, visit www.arbroathseafest.co.uk.
Behind the Scenes with Core
The Dundee Channel caught up with Core at Radio North Angus in Arbroath for a feature on Andy Gee’s saturday show. We last featured Core as they qualified for The Surface Festival. A few months on Core are ready to launch their new album “From Within” at Dexters in Dundee on 30th September 2011. Here you can watch the interview with the band in the studio before its broadcast this saturday on Radio North Angus 96.6FM.
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