Archives » Stonehaven

Stonehaven’s Other Claim to Fame

Apart from the Carron Restaurant – see previous post – Stonehaven, via the medium of the Carron Fish Bar, formerly The Haven, is the birthplace of that Scottish culinary delicacy, the deep fried Mars Bar.

The Carron Fish Bar, Stonehaven

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 6 (iii). Carron Restaurant Stonehaven Revisited Again

I have featured the Carron Restuarant, Stoneheaven twice before, here and here. At the time these photos were taken the restaurant was shu but it seems it has now reopened, purveying Indian food, trading under the name Carron to Mumbai.

This photo is of the side window on the alley at the left hand side of the imposing frontage of the Restaurant

Window, Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven

The canopy of that imposing entrance facing Cameron Street has this side window on to the alley but through it you can see the Art Deco glazing on the canopy itself:-

Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven

Art Deco Interior, Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven:-

Art Deco Interior, Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven

As I recall this Art Deco mosaic vestibule floor was at the rear entrance to the Carron Restaurant, in Evan Street.

Art Deco Mosaic Tiling, Stonehaven

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 43: Stonehaven (ii)

On the way up to Peterhead we stopped at Stonhaven again.

I took a few more photos of that Art Deco terrace of shops.

Art Deco Corner, Stonehaven, Again

Corner shop entrance. Good curved glass:-

Art Deco Shop Entrance,Stonehaven

Slightly different view compared to my other shot of this terrace of shops (see link above):-

Art Deco Shops, Stonehaven

Deco windows:-

Art Deco Shop Windows,Stonehaven

Footbridge, Stonehaven

Good wrought iron work on this bridge over the Carron Water, near the Carron Restaurant:-

Lovely Footbridge, Stonehaven

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 6 (ii). Carron Restaurant Stonehaven Revisited

Well I hadn’t photographed it before but I had featured it here. See also my comments of two posts ago.

These are my photos though. Main entrance and stairs:-

Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven, Art Deco Delight

Garden detail. Great deco styling:-

Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven, Art Deco, Garden Detail

The gateway is superb:-

Art Deco Gateway, Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven

The Art Deco styling extends to the fencing at the lane to the side:-

Garden and Fencing, Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven

Again note the fencing here and on the balcony, plus the lovely circular sweep of the canopy and windows which have very stylish glazing:-

Carron Restaurant, Stonehaven, View from Lane.

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 43: Stonehaven (i)

Stonehaven was once the county town of Kincardineshire but that county has since been incorporated into Aberdeenshire.

Corner site; typical north-eastern granite construction:-

Art Deco Shop Front, Stonehaven

Round the corner. Good detailing and glazing around the entrance to that middle shop :-

Art Deco Shop Front, Stonehaven

The Deco theme continues for the next three shops. Again note the glazing. The leftmost shop here is the street entrance to the Carron Restaurant. In the link I say it’s the rightmost shop but I hadn’t visited Stonehaven when I made that post. Sadly when I was there the restaurant was closed again due to the retirement of its owners. I understand it has since been reopened once more:-

Art Deco Shop Fronts, Stonehaven

Rightmost shop; good stonework detail above door:-

Art Deco Shop Front, Stonehaven 4

Very minor deco, up a side street:-

Minor Art Deco, Stonehaven

Sunset Song by Lewis Grassic Gibbon

In “A Scots Quair,” Hutchinson, 1966, 180 p. First published 1932. The cover shown is of a Canongate edition.

Sunset Song cover

The Scots Quair trilogy is widely seen as Gibbon’s major work, Sunset Song as one of the most important Scottish novels of the twentieth century. Set in the estate of Kinraddie, in the Mearns area, between Laurencekirk and Stonehaven, where Gibbon lived, the lyrical descriptions of the Mearns countryside speak of a deep attachment to the land.

Sunset Song in the main tells the story of Chris Guthrie, daughter of an overbearing father, John, and a mother, Jean, who is so ground down by childbirth that she kills herself and her young twins when she finds herself pregnant for the sixth time. Kinraddie is said by a new minister of the local kirk, a man called Gibbon, to be “fathered between a kailyard and a bonny brier bush in the lee of a house with green shutters,” despite their being no house with green shutters in the whole of Kinraddie. This of course is the author placing his novel firmly within the ongoing sweep of Scottish literature.

I have read nearly all of Gibbon’s novels – whether originally published pseudonymously as by “Gibbon,” or under his real name of J Leslie Mitchell. Sunset Song and The Speak of the Mearns are the most rooted in his home area, hence liberally sprinkled with Scots words. A prefatory note begs the indulgence of English readers in this regard. (I confess I have only a limited background in Scots – especially of words to do with agriculture – but found a lack of knowledge of precise meanings was not a barrier to comprehension. English or USian readers may beg to differ. However, I understand more modern editions contain a glossary.)

The novel is carefully structured to reflect the phases of Chris’s young life. It has a prelude, “The Unfurrowed Field,” which unfolds the history of and introduces the characters inhabiting the Kinraddie estate, followed by four sections, titled respectively Ploughing, Drilling, Seed-Time and Harvest, then an epilude – a word seemingly coined by Gibbon – also titled “The Unfurrowed Field.”

Kinraddie is depicted as a community that thrives on gossip. That would, in the old Scots phrase, be “minding everybody’s business” (which is in my experience immediately followed by the words “but their own.”) It also thrives on argument. At one point Chris tells her brother, “I don’t believe they were ever religious, the Scots folk. They’ve never really BELIEVED.” The kirk had just been a place to collect and argue, and criticise God.

In Kinraddie people are quick to think the worst of others – and never expect the same will apply to them – but still gather round to help in an emergency. Set in that pre-Great War era when mechanical devices were on the way but a rarity on most farms – though the small size of the holdings in Kinraddie make them more like crofts – life is hard and opportunities for harmless pleasure few, and savoured. The number of pages given over to Chris’s wedding (where everyone musical, and some who are not, give their party pieces or provide accompaniment to the dancing and Chris herself sings that great Scottish lament The Flowers of the Forest) – even though it did coincide with the arrival of a New Year – serves to highlight this. On music Chris reflects, “how strange was the sadness of Scotland’s singing, made for the sadness of the land and sky in dark autumn evenings, the crying of men and women of the land who had seen their lives and loves sink away in the years.”

In Harvest, all is ripped apart by the impact of the Great War. Not only are relationships within the community slowly eroded, the woods which protect the land are cut down to make aeroplanes and the like, and several young men do not come back from France. As its title implies the novel is a eulogy for the lost way of life. In the epilude, at the dedication of the War Memorial, a piper plays the tune of The Flowers of the Forest, the music of which is rendered in the text, a threnody to that now dead past. But the key sentence of the book is perhaps, “Scotland lived, she could never die, the land would outlast them all.” It has, it does, it will.

A couple of phrases appear which are unlikely to feature in a modern novel. After firing the whin bushes Chris’s brother Will is said to be “black as a nigger” and “fit to freeze the chilblains on a brass monkey” is nowadays usually expressed more scatologically. Yes, Sunset Song is a novel of its time – but it is also not of it. The Scotland that Sunset Song depicts may be no more, the people it describes are not.

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 14 and Aberdeen’s Art Deco Heritage 3, Revisited.

Yesterday afternoon I glimpsed a programme called Grand Tours of Scotland. I wouldn’t normally have watched this (mainly because the good lady thinks the presenter, Paul Murton, has an unappealing voice) but we were in someone else’s house at the time.

It was episode 6 of the series, the only one I’ve seen and Murton was “following the sun” up through the East of Scotland’s sea-side resorts. On the way he visited Stonehaven Swimming pool which has featured in my Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage posts (see link above.)

He ended up at the Beach Ballroom, Aberdeen, which is in my Aberdeen Art Deco Heritage posts. Murton undertook some dancing inside the Ballroom. The interior still retains Art Deco features.

Anyway the programme is available on the BBC iPlayer, but only until Wednesday 21/12/11, so if you tune in you can catch some glimpses yourself.

Also on the iPlayer (till tomorrow 20/12/11) is a piece, about 25 minutes in, from The One Show on the Midland Hotel, my post on which you can see via the link.

Re-numbering Art Deco

For those of you who care about these things I decided a while ago that the numbering system I was using for my Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage posts had become too unwieldy.

For really signature buildings (or those geographically remote) I have retained the Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage title but otherwise I now list buildings under a narrower geographical heading, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Dundee etc.

As a result I thought it better to re-number some earlier posts retrospectively and edit the posts accordingly.

For the record the changes are:-

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 6. Bon Accord Baths: now Aberdeen’s Art Deco Heritage 1

SADH 7. Carron Restaurant: now SADH 6

SADH 8 (and update.) Nardini’s: now 7 (and update)

SADH 9. Northern Hotel: now Aberdeen 2

SADH 10. Tarlair Swimming Pool: now 8

SADH 11. Ascot Cinema: now 9

SADH 12. Kelvin Court: now 10

SADH 13. Victoria Cinema: now Edinburgh’s Art Deco Heritage 1

SADH 14. Green’s Playhouse: now Dundee’s Art Deco Heritage 1

SADH 15. Murraygate (I): now Dundee 2

SADH 16. Murraygate (II and III): now Dundee 3

SADH 17. now Dundee 4

SADH 18. Causewayside Garage: now Edinburgh 2

SADH 19. Dumbarton: now 11

SADH 20. Tobermory: now 12

SADH 21. Perth: now 13

SADH 17 (ii). Lilybank Mews: now Dundee 5

SADH 9 (ii). Beach Ballroom: now Aberdeen 3

SADH 22. Stonehaven Swimming pool: now 14

End of public information announcement.

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 14. Stonehaven Open Air Swimming Pool

Stonehaven Pool

Up north again for the latest in this series. The above picture is from the Wikipedia page about the pool which is apparently the only Olympic sized sea water lido in the Art Deco style.

The pool’s home web page is here.

There is a nice photo of the facade at this site. The yellow and blue paintwork is reminiscent of Kirkcaldy Ice Rink.

This is an aerial shot but you can’t really see any deco from above.

The gates look very deco, though.

This arty one is from flickr.

Pool

free hit counter script