News Archive - February 2001

Firemen On Wick Rooftops Today
Firemen in Wick took to the rooftops to prevent possible serious injury to passers by when it became evident that large lumps of snow and ice were in danger of crashing on to passers-by doing their shopping today.

Several Reunion Updates

Mandy Is On Her Way
The leader of the 70-77 pack is on her way to Caithness for the first of several reunions on the web site and the one that set that section going.  Hope you all have a good night and we will try to get down to see all of you.

Staxigoe School Class 1946 - 47
Thanks to Charlie Banks for this picture he has kept all these years.

Water Charges Loom For Voluntary Groups
By now most charities and voluntary groups are aware of the new water charges coming on 1st April 2001 when they all lose their exemptions.  Scout Halls, Village Halls, Youth Clubs, and all sorts of organisations who use them are faced with paying the charges  - 27 million in 2001 - 2002 and double that the following year.  Lets hear your views on the Message Board.

News Links
We continue to add lots of News sources to the listings to cover all sorts of topics in alphabetical order to make them easy to find.

Wick Section
We are now drawing together much of the information in the A to Z from around the site to make it easier to find.  Thurso is next once we complete the Wick roundup of links.

Caithness 12.00 Noon Lots Of Snow
Yes its getting even colder at the moment.  Caithness is getting plenty of snow this year.  All schools in the county are closed today due to the weather.

Old Smiddy Inn, Thrumster
Another place with a warm fire to welcome customers on the main road just about four miles out from Wick.  Another pub in our new Caithness Pub Guide.

Snow Ploughs Working Overtime
Keeping the roads open is a big job when the weather is throwing everything at you.  A another few pictures of winter in Caithness.

More Pictures in the 70 - 77 Pulteney Reunion

Miller Group 1916
Adding to our growing collection is this 1916 group of a branch of the Miller family.  A question.  Does anyone know who the parents of Christina (Teenie) Miller nee: Miller (left) were. Christina returned to Wick after world War 1.  Check the section for names of all the relatives and more details.

Caithness Highland Games Diary Dates
Caithness has four Highland Games within three weeks giving competitors a chance to win prizes at a series of venues in the most northerly mainland county.  See Halkirk 2000 Games.

Scottish Facts Links Page
A new page on Scottish Facts to help answer the growing numbers of questions Caithness.Org is receiving from overseas on many aspects of Scotland.

"I Wanted To Be Miss Whaligoe Steps 1968"
Happy Birthday Tomorrow 26th Ann.  Another 50 on the way.  We can see we will rapidly need to open another new section on Caithness.Org.

Its a Birthday today in the Reunion Pages

Snowing In Caithness Again
Every reason to stay at home today in Caithness.  But just take a look next and you might see why some people are tempted out for a Sunday Drink and a bite to eat.

A Warm Glow After the Snow

Here's a fine start to The Caithness Pub Guide. 
Another section that will grow over the coming months as we get out for "E - Crack".  Wonder which one Mandy Miller and crew will be in.  Maybe all of them.

Sinclair Connections
Caithness has a huge number of Sinclair Connections hence the new Links list.  If you have a good Sinclair site let us know to add it to the list.

Offbeat News
Another news section but with a lighter set of stories than many we have now updating on  The categories of news available continues to grow in our News Section where you can get Scottish News or UK news at a glance.  Or you can select from one of the categories that we add to every month.  Many of the news categories also have growing Link lists attached and are therefore also listed in the Links Section for convenience.

Keeping Birds & Poultry In Caithness
A very popular hobby in Caithness is keeping and showing birds and poultry.  Not an obvious feature if you are driving around.  But visit one of the competition days and you will be amazed at the variety and quality of the birds kept by adults and children in the county.  Here is just a few of one man's large collection just outside Wick.

Free Computers For Community Groups
Check this notice to see if your group could qualify for a free computer. 

Are you Involved In Renewable Energy?
Scottish Power is offering 50% grants to groups and individuals for research, development and educational projects in renewable energy.  Check it out to see if your group qualifies.

Road From Wick Into Staxigoe
Following on From our earlier Old Staxigoe Pictures we now begin a series of Staxigoe today.  Further pictures of Modern Staxigoe coming over the next few days.

CASE January Report
The full report from Caithness & Sutherland Enterprise outlining current unemployment statistics, training & community grants and a variety of other investment information for the two counties now available on the Business Pages.

New Picture in Mandy's Reunion Crew

Miller Academy 1962
Were you at Miller Academy in Thurso in 1962.  Lost the picture?  Then here is another chance to get it again.  Sent in by Roy McInnes

More From Hillhead Fishing Project
The children have gathered a great collection of pictures to show the fishing connections in their families.  From boats, lorries, fish, fish shop, boat launches, skippers and crew.  They have covered many aspects.  19 pictures now in and they and more will be on show soon in St Fergus Gallery, Wick.  In a few weeks we will bring you all of the remaining pictures once the exhibition is finished.  It is not hard to see why the collection won a History Channel  prize.

From  Painting Of Staxigoe Many Years Ago
How it looked in its early days.  Note the red pantile roofs that had the same slates as Italian towns where they were from brought from as part of the ballast in sailing ships arriving to pick up cargo at the harbour.

WOO HOO!!! Nine days before we all REUNITE!!!
OK - Who has still to get their tickets. Let everyone know that D day is approaching fast.

Wick's New Business Park Work Underway
By the end of 2001 this new Business Park at Lochshell outside Wick will offer the most up to date facilities for local and incoming businesses to Caithness.  Caithness.Org will follow the Park's development over the coming months.

More From Janis For the 49-51 Reunion

Were You At this Wedding In 1966
From John Page  - In Australia for 30 years now.  Where are all you other Caithness people now.  Join our new page and let everyone see your local web site.  Send us the web site address and a couple of details.

Where Caithness People Went
We are getting a trickle of replies to where Caithness Folk went and you can see them on the new page.  We have already gone round the globe from USA, Canada and Australia.  Let us know about your local web site wherever you went so we can see the area you all live in now.  We know Caithness folk went all over for the last couple of hundred years.  So even if your parents or grandparents   left Caithness then let us have a note of how you are connected and the web site address.  Latest on the list CHATanooga COMunnity in Tennessee.  See who lives there now?

Advertise On Two Web Sites For The Price Of One
Reaching an increasing audience on the Caithness.Org web sites your goods and services could receive a boost via our banner advertising pointing to your web site or page.  We have a limited numbers of slots so don't delay.

Scot Pioneer
Unloading Sand at Wick today.  You can never get too much sand we always say!!

Hillhead School Project
Hillhead have won an award from the History Channel for their school project showing many aspects of the fishing industry in Caithness and the children's connections through relatives both past and present.  Soon to be the subject of a special exhibition in the St Fergus Gallery in Wick.  Here are a few of the pictures.  We will publish more over the next few days.  Many more are being specially mounted for show with information at the gallery.

Remember the Foghorn
Silenced for many years now but who could forget that eerie sound on foggy days.  Now satellites tell ships exactly where they are it is not necessary and we can all get some sleep.  But here is the very place it used to sit at North Head.  The very mention of it will bring the sound back.

Fit Volunteers Wanted
Wick Town Events Committee have a bigger than ever calendar of things happening in the town mainly in the Market Square this year.  Volunteers are wanted to make sure the events run smoothly.  Assistance is required for a number of small jobs - setting up the PA system and the staging on Event Days.

Broadhaven On The Outskirts Of Wick
Pictures taken on a Sunday Stroll round North Head.  Rest of the stroll later in the week.

Letter From Swimming Pool Group
The group have not heard about the Swimming Pool questions sent to the council and they have had to write again.  See what they are asking and you can ask what's the hold up.

Lybster's New Centre To Regenerate Harbour Area
Work is well ahead for the opening this summer of the new centre to depict the harbour in its herring heyday.  In addition new services for visiting yachtsmen, closed circuit TV on birdlife, new paths, replica fishing boat and a new coffee shop.

Right of Way in Wick
Ian Sutherland of the Wick Society is looking for people who have used the path that runs from Hempriggs to Wick in the last 15 years (The period required to make a representation over a right of way). Garden walls and fences have been built across the old path.  It is a requirement to get evidence of use in the last 15 years.  the walkway runs parallel to the old Pulteney lade built by Thomas Telford in 1811.  If you used the path in the last 15 years get in touch.  Use it or lose it?  Mr Sutherland wants to form a group to repair the path and possibly make a cycleway running along part of the old Lybster Railway and make access to Neolithic and Iron Age Settlements.

Items For Sale
The New Message Board offers everyone the chance to advertise their unwanted goods for sale on the new section.  Advertise on the Internet FREE.  You can charge less and make more for your unwanted goods because it costs nothing for non-business adverts on Caithness.Org.  Get digging in that attic - advertise on Caithness.Org -  bringing you more services soon.  As soon as its sold post another message to say goods sold and we will remove the ad.  Could it be easier.  Your ad can stay up 7 days a week till its sold.

First Caithneesian Checks In With His Local Site
Already in just over two hours the first site has been notified to us.  From Canada "100 Mile House And The South Caribou Area" British Columbia.   Unbelievably Jim (Hamish) Clark originally from Wick checked his email just before he left home to fly over to Wick with his mother who still resides in Wick and was over for a holiday. 

Karen's 1974 Thurso Reunion
A list of the people who have not yet been found is now available.  If you have any current contact information then contact her by email.

Submissions and Advertising
Caithness.Org is moving swiftly towards a different level.  With the flotation of Caithness Business Pages the first of several changes has taken place.

Calling Caithness People Everywhere
You can all see Caithness now and lots more of it to come.  But where are all of you ex Caithness people now.  Send us an email with your name, where you live now, previous connection to Caithness and the nearest local web site that shows the place you live in or near.  Caithness.Org.

Mandy's Reunion Group Find Another After 20 years.
Find out who inside.  And latest letter from Oz just in.  Is Wick ready? - 13 days to go.

Aberdeen - Caithness, Ork & Shet Assoc
Latest from another Caithness outpost.  If you are going to Aberdeen look them up and pay them a call if they have a function on.  Visitors always welcome.

Even Older Staxigoe
The series of pictures around Staxigoe continues with a set of the Elsay Broch.  This is also the start of a new section on the Brochs of Caithness and more will be added over coming months.  It is often possible to visit the Brochs with people who can say something about them.  Watch out for field club walks and especially Archaeology Week in October.  More Staxigoe pictures to come and a history of the village.

Scouts Reunion
More pictures are coming in from the early years.  who do you know in this old group At The Flagpole.  Names are already winging their way to us - only a few to go.  Another one just in is a Rock Climbing Group1951 Group  - most names found.  Do you know the last ones?

What's On
Lots of new entries are going in every week.  Make sure your group gets its FREE entries for events, coffee mornings, fashion shows, Highland dancing and anything else you need people to know about.  Fill in the submission form on the pages or send us you poster or leaflet.  No Internet access then phone us - see the Press Room for contact details.

Thurso High School 1974 Reunion
List of the initial school roll (315 people) now available showing who is interested in the reunion.  A further list will be added soon showing those who joined the year at a later date. 

New Street Pictures in Photo Features 2001

Staxigoe Village Hall
Staxigoe Hall was originally one of the old graneries although much altered.  Can you spot it in the old pictures of the village?

Looking Noss Farm, Staxigoe To Noss Head
This view taken from near Staxigoe Harbour standing at the gate to Noss Farm.

Looking Over Bignold Park to Wick
Great weather this week in Caithness.

Duke Of Edinburgh February Newsletter

Early Staxigoe And Its Folk

Old Staxigoe
First in a series of new pages coming over the next few days on Staxigoe.  We start with some pictures taken of Old Staxigoe buildings that remain including the famous graneries.  Coming soon pages of pictures of people from early Staxigoe around 1920's, newer houses, Harbour pictures now and in the past, and pages on the history.

Alternative Music Festival in What's On
See 23 February - All for charity.

Noss Head Lighthouse

Thurso Class 74 Reunion
If you all wait a while it looks as if everyone might be going to a reunion.  Here is the latest one with planning well underway.  More details coming soon and full listings the team have tracked down so far.  Get ready to try and find everyone else.  Six Reunions on the main page now and we hear more may be on the way to the pages.

49-51 Reunion Latest From Janis

Class of 76 Looking For You?

Books in FREE Training Online
Another page for Free Books in Free Training Online.
Don't Forget our growing list of E-text Books if you need to see the whole book or part of it.  Remember only out of copyright books will usually be found in these listings unless the author has waved the rights.

Class 76 Reunion
New one for Caithness.Org and organised some time ago and letters are out.  Debbie would like to remind everyone to send back the replies as soon as possible.  New page set up for future information and pictures etc if anyone would like to send them in.

Latest for 70-77 Reunion from Mandy in Aussie

Wick River Last Week
A different face of the Wick River calm and white after the storms.  Compare it to the January Scenes on the river.

Book Store on Caithness.Org
Caithness.Org has affiliated with Amazon Books following many requests on locating books and maps on Caithness.  You can now visit our book store and see the first selection that can be ordered from Amazon via Caithness.Org.  We will be adding to the titles and building a comprehensive catalogue of Caithness books online.  See the special offer on Bruce Sandison's new book out in May 2001.

Halkirk Community Web Site
Another web site from Robert Lockwood to highlight Halkirk and the area, its Highland Games and other activities.  Watch it grow in the coming weeks.

Pentland Firth Section
New pages added.

Pentland Firth Section
Robert Lockwood has built a new section on the Pentland Firth with useful information to compliment the coastguard site he runs.

Stroma - A Caithness Island - More Pictures
Uninhabited except for the sheep and the birds.  You can take short boat trips around it in summer when it looks idyllic.

Trinkie In Trouble
The volunteer team who have worked hard over the last five years to keep the Trinkie outdoor pool in good condition for swimming have decided their time is up.  New blood and money are required to keep it going.  If you have any ideas on raising the money for the annual clean up or want to be involved contact Wick Community Council.

Wick Castle In Winter
The Old Man looking as cold as it feels.

B & B, Guest House, Hotel
With the summer months approaching make sure your business has its FREE page in the new Caithness Business Pages.  We will be promoting this new web site increasingly heavily on the web so make sure your business is in for the summer now.  Booking accommodation? - Help us by telling people you found a place on Caithness Business Pages

Train in Wick
Trains have had difficulty getting north this week but this one eventually made it after the route was cleared at Helmsdale after passengers were rescued and put up in a local hotel overnight.

Wick Looking From Milton Today
Lovely in Caithness following the snow storms from the other day.

Watten In Winter
The former Loch Watten Hotel has recently been renovated and is now Loch Watten House with three double en-suite bedrooms.  See some of the surrounding area today after the snow falls of recent days.

Edinburgh Caithness Association Report
If you are in the Edinburgh area you can still contact Caithness "fowk", attend a function and enjoy a ceilidh.  Check out what Edinburgh Caithnessians are up to in our Caithness exiles section.

Weather Highlights Maternity Threats
As a letter in the John O'Groat Journal said are we going to see the last of Caithnessians born in the county.  Far fetched maybe but it highlights the fears for the downgrading of the maternity services in this millennium.  Write to everybody and join Councillors and MSP Jamie Stone in fighting any reduction which puts lives at risk.

The Way to Caithness
Coming north with snow cleared by snow ploughs opening up roads around Aviemore but trains to Caithness were still not running today with possible cancellations on Friday.

What's On at Thurso's All Star Cinema
Starting tonight the What's On pages will tell you What's On at the Cinema in Caithness with times of films showing each day. Lots of Film trailers can be found in Film Titles in the Links section.

Two Ancient Worlds, The Moon And The Highlands of Scotland
An interesting article from E Rudie first published in the field Club bulletin in October 1982 on how space technology is changing our understanding of earth.

Social Report - Caithness
A report prepared by Caithness Citizen's Advice Bureau highlights several areas for concern regarding poverty in the county and shows facts on rising debt enquiries, housing, employment and a range of other information that may be useful to any organisation involved in tackling social exclusion and poverty.

What's New At Fathom's new content is being notified to the web site every week.  Content is derived from Columbia University, The London School of Economics and Political Science  American Film Institute, The Natural History Museum, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, The British Library,  Science Museum, University of Michigan, The University of Chicago, Cambridge University Press, The New York Public Library, RAND, Victoria and Albert Museum.  Check our growing FREE education links regularly.  Join us at Fathom.

Laidhay Croft Museum
This was the scene on the way north today after the thaw was well under way following the wintry weather of the last few days. 

New Message Boards
The Message Boards are back but unfortunately we have not been able to restore the old information.  We hope the new look boards give a better service and we will have the ability we hope to restore messages following any future problems.  Watch out for the new FREE "Items For Sale" message board coming any time now.

Reunion Updates

New Domain Name For Business Pages
The Caithness Business Pages are now in the process of moving to their brand new domain name: , the current location of the pages will remain active until such time as all our visitors have found us in our new location.  If you think you should be listed in the Business pages then just fill in the submissions form and get your free entry today.

Watten From The Air
Some beautiful shots of Watten in Winter.

Grampian Records Building - Wick
One of Caithness's most successful companies is located at the Industrial estate producing high quality tapes and CD's

Marie Curie Cancer Volunteer Collectors
If anyone can spare a couple of hours on Saturday 10th March to help with this worthwhile cause check out the details on the Volunteering Vacancies Page

Thanks For Looking In Everyone
Well January was the biggest month ever on Caithness.Org with a 41% increase in visitors to 24481 and over 130,000 pages viewed making a hit rate of 626,166.  Take which ever statistic you understand.  They are all up by miles whichever one you look at.  You have looked at over half a million pages since the middle of August.  Anyway thanks for looking in and telling everyone else.  Your emails have spread the word faster than we could.  And keep writing to us it really helps to know what you appreciate seeing.  More of everything coming soon and possibly some surprises.

Scottish Government Links Page
The Scottish Parliament has now improved its Audio and video presentation live.  You can pick up the information on the new Scottish Government Links page we have started to build.

More Free Course Links
Rapidly expanding the section has now divided into three pages.  Additional courses and another bring you links on Distance Learning one of the fastest expanding areas on the Internet.

Radio While You Browse Caithness.Org
Pick up a Radio Station or two while you browse our site or even take it with you when you leave (just minimise the window).  There are more links on the page but this is an easy one to try and has lots of channels.  We have put another button on the left for you to pick it up when you come back.

Radio Talks and Discussions On PC Etc
Maybe you are just getting started and can't be bothered reading all those manuals.  Well via out Training Courses Online page you can now find a series talks and discussions on a range of computer topics anytime you want from Compu-kiss.  Once you have it running just open another window and keep browsing Caithness.Org while you listen.


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