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TITLE
Carbisdale Castle SYHA staff and visitors, 1999
EXTERNAL ID
NRM_NBNW_FNL_DS080615
PLACENAME
Culrain
DISTRICT
Tain
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ROSS: Kincardine
DATE OF IMAGE
September 1999
PERIOD
1990s
CREATOR
Chris Hogg
SOURCE
National Railway Museum, York
ASSET ID
19874
KEYWORDS
railway
railways
youth hostels
statues
castles
Carbisdale Castle SYHA staff and visitors, 1999

Youth hostel staff members and visitors, photographed in September 1999, in the statue gallery at Carbisdale Castle. The castle has operated as a youth hostel since 1945 and stands near to the Far North line, its station being Culrain.

Carbisdale Castle was built by the Dowager Duchess of Sutherland between 1906 and 1917. Mary Caroline Blair (nee Mitchell) married the 3rd Duke of Sutherland in 1889. When he died in 1892, he left the bulk of his estate to his widow but the family contested the Will. Eventually both parties came to an agreement that gave the Dowager a substantial financial settlement. The family also agreed to build a castle for her as long as it was outside the Sutherland lands. The castle is cleverly located on a hillside and visible to a large part of Sutherland, especially the main road and rail line which the Sutherland family would have to use when travelling south. It became known as the 'Castle of Spite' as it is widely considered that the Duchess located the castle there to spite her husband's family and the settlement agreement. It is said that the reason for the castle's tower only having clock faces on three of its four sides - the side facing Sutherland is blank - is because the Duchess did not wish to give the time of day to her former relatives.

In 1933 Carbisdale Castle was bought by the shipping magnate, Theodore Salvesen. The Salvesen family gifted the Castle, its contents and the estate to the Scottish Youth Hostel Association in 1945.

Background
Over one hundred years ago, two of the most picturesque railways in the world, the Kyle line and the Far North line, were built. Linking them to the rest of the UK rail network is the Highland main line. From 1997 to 2003 the National Railway Museum photographed these three lines, and from the images three exhibitions were created - 'Connection to the Kyle', 'By Firth and Flow' and 'The Highland Link'. The exhibitions were hosted on the Scottish Archive Network (SCAN) under the digital exhibition 'North by Northwest' which officially launched the National Archive of Scotland site on 5 June 2001 in Inverness. The collaboration with SCAN lasted until 2009 when 'North by Northwest' was transferred to the Am Baile website.

'North by Northwest' documents living history and records a snapshot of time in the lives of the people and the lines during the closing years of the twentieth century and the emergence of the twenty-first century. The exhibitions celebrated the impact of the Highland railways on the people, landscape and economy of the Scottish Highlands.

We acknowledge support from the following sponsors who funded the photographic survey of the Highland main line, the Kyle and the Far North lines by the National Railway Museum photographers between 1997 and 2003:

Railtrack, Railtrack-Scotland, ScotRail, EWS, Porterbrook, First Engineering, The Highland Rail Network Development Partnership, The Highland Council, Ross & Cromarty Enterprise, Caithness & Sutherland Enterprise, Safeways, Friends of the National Railway Museum, Perth & Kinross Council, and the Highland Railway Society.

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High Life Highland is a company limited by guarantee registered in Scotland No. SC407011 and is a registered Scottish charity No. SC042593
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Carbisdale Castle SYHA staff and visitors, 1999

ROSS: Kincardine

1990s

railway; railways; youth hostels; statues; castles

National Railway Museum, York

North by Northwest - The Far North Line

Youth hostel staff members and visitors, photographed in September 1999, in the statue gallery at Carbisdale Castle. The castle has operated as a youth hostel since 1945 and stands near to the Far North line, its station being Culrain.<br /> <br /> Carbisdale Castle was built by the Dowager Duchess of Sutherland between 1906 and 1917. Mary Caroline Blair (nee Mitchell) married the 3rd Duke of Sutherland in 1889. When he died in 1892, he left the bulk of his estate to his widow but the family contested the Will. Eventually both parties came to an agreement that gave the Dowager a substantial financial settlement. The family also agreed to build a castle for her as long as it was outside the Sutherland lands. The castle is cleverly located on a hillside and visible to a large part of Sutherland, especially the main road and rail line which the Sutherland family would have to use when travelling south. It became known as the 'Castle of Spite' as it is widely considered that the Duchess located the castle there to spite her husband's family and the settlement agreement. It is said that the reason for the castle's tower only having clock faces on three of its four sides - the side facing Sutherland is blank - is because the Duchess did not wish to give the time of day to her former relatives. <br /> <br /> In 1933 Carbisdale Castle was bought by the shipping magnate, Theodore Salvesen. The Salvesen family gifted the Castle, its contents and the estate to the Scottish Youth Hostel Association in 1945. <br /> <br /> Background<br /> Over one hundred years ago, two of the most picturesque railways in the world, the Kyle line and the Far North line, were built. Linking them to the rest of the UK rail network is the Highland main line. From 1997 to 2003 the National Railway Museum photographed these three lines, and from the images three exhibitions were created - 'Connection to the Kyle', 'By Firth and Flow' and 'The Highland Link'. The exhibitions were hosted on the Scottish Archive Network (SCAN) under the digital exhibition 'North by Northwest' which officially launched the National Archive of Scotland site on 5 June 2001 in Inverness. The collaboration with SCAN lasted until 2009 when 'North by Northwest' was transferred to the Am Baile website.<br /> <br /> 'North by Northwest' documents living history and records a snapshot of time in the lives of the people and the lines during the closing years of the twentieth century and the emergence of the twenty-first century. The exhibitions celebrated the impact of the Highland railways on the people, landscape and economy of the Scottish Highlands.<br /> <br /> We acknowledge support from the following sponsors who funded the photographic survey of the Highland main line, the Kyle and the Far North lines by the National Railway Museum photographers between 1997 and 2003:<br /> <br /> Railtrack, Railtrack-Scotland, ScotRail, EWS, Porterbrook, First Engineering, The Highland Rail Network Development Partnership, The Highland Council, Ross & Cromarty Enterprise, Caithness & Sutherland Enterprise, Safeways, Friends of the National Railway Museum, Perth & Kinross Council, and the Highland Railway Society.