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TITLE
Gable end of Julia Mackenzie's home on Eilean Tighe
EXTERNAL ID
PC_JMACKENZIE_006
PLACENAME
Eilean Tighe
DISTRICT
Skye
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
INVERNESS: Portree
CREATOR
Julia Mackenzie
SOURCE
Julia Mackenzie
ASSET ID
28851
KEYWORDS
Hebrides
Hebridean
islanders
islands
crofting
crofter
crofters
croft
crofts
croft house
crofthouse
peat
peats
cooking
chimneys
Gable end of Julia Mackenzie's home on Eilean Tighe

This photograph was taken on Eilean Tighe (Island of the House) which lies off the north end of Raasay in the Inner Hebrides. It was provided by Julia Mackenzie and shows the gable end of her old home on the island. Julia was born on Eilean Tighe in 1923 and later moved to the larger island of Rona. In the late 1990s she revisited Eilean Tighe which is now deserted. This visit prompted her to write a book about her childhood memories of island life. In 'Whirligig beetles and tackety boots' she describes the house she lived in:

'The living-cum-bedroom-cum-dining quarters had what is known as a hanging chimney place, with the chimneybreast jutting out from the wall; the fire of peat was laid on a flat stone inside this. A very convenient arrangement, as one could sit at the sides as well as the front. The peat gave off a lovely aroma as it burned, to think of it makes for nostalgia. Hanging inside the huge chimney was a strong chain called a 'Slabhraidh' in the Gaelic; this was attached to a strong iron crossbar further up the chimney. At the end of the 'Slabhraidh', was a strong hook on which the kettle would hang to boil and the bow handled skillets, griddle and strong large frying pan. All these cooking utensils had these bow handles for hanging on the hook. The handles were called 'bulasg' and the rate of boiling was controlled by putting the pot on a higher link of the chain by raising the hook. It was all very effective, but by burning so much peat, the chimney got very sooty, so the cook had to be very careful that everything had a lid on.'

'Whirligig beetles and tackety boots' is available for purchase from Blythswood Bookshops. All proceeds go towards the work of Blythswood Care

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Gable end of Julia Mackenzie's home on Eilean Tighe

INVERNESS: Portree

Hebrides; Hebridean; islanders; islands; crofting; crofter; crofters; croft; crofts; croft house; crofthouse; peat; peats; cooking; chimneys

Julia Mackenzie

This photograph was taken on Eilean Tighe (Island of the House) which lies off the north end of Raasay in the Inner Hebrides. It was provided by Julia Mackenzie and shows the gable end of her old home on the island. Julia was born on Eilean Tighe in 1923 and later moved to the larger island of Rona. In the late 1990s she revisited Eilean Tighe which is now deserted. This visit prompted her to write a book about her childhood memories of island life. In 'Whirligig beetles and tackety boots' she describes the house she lived in:<br /> <br /> 'The living-cum-bedroom-cum-dining quarters had what is known as a hanging chimney place, with the chimneybreast jutting out from the wall; the fire of peat was laid on a flat stone inside this. A very convenient arrangement, as one could sit at the sides as well as the front. The peat gave off a lovely aroma as it burned, to think of it makes for nostalgia. Hanging inside the huge chimney was a strong chain called a 'Slabhraidh' in the Gaelic; this was attached to a strong iron crossbar further up the chimney. At the end of the 'Slabhraidh', was a strong hook on which the kettle would hang to boil and the bow handled skillets, griddle and strong large frying pan. All these cooking utensils had these bow handles for hanging on the hook. The handles were called 'bulasg' and the rate of boiling was controlled by putting the pot on a higher link of the chain by raising the hook. It was all very effective, but by burning so much peat, the chimney got very sooty, so the cook had to be very careful that everything had a lid on.'<br /> <br /> 'Whirligig beetles and tackety boots' is available for purchase from Blythswood Bookshops. All proceeds go towards the work of Blythswood Care