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TITLE
Dingwall and the Cromarty Firth
EXTERNAL ID
QZP40_CARD_0375
PLACENAME
Dingwall
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ROSS: Dingwall
DATE OF IMAGE
1956
PERIOD
1950s
SOURCE
Highland Libraries
ASSET ID
32289
KEYWORDS
postcards
towns
churches
castles
harbours, canals
firths
Dingwall and the Cromarty Firth

This postcard from1956 shows Dingwall and the Cromarty Firth

On the right is the Free Church designed by the architect John Rhind and built between 1867 and 1870. There is a huge rose window in the south gable.

To the left of centre is Hill Street and, at its intersection with the High Street, the National Hotel built in 1858

Dingwall is the county town of Ross and Cromarty. It is situated at the head of the Cromarty Firth at the mouth of the River Peffrey. Its Gaelic name is "Inbhir Pheoran" meaning "Mouth of the Peffrey" but up until 500.AD the mouth of the river was nearer Strathpeffer, 5 miles to the west, and the place where Dingwall now stands was a tidal swamp. It was only at the end of the fifth century that the estuary filled in and the mud flats became solid enough for people to build their houses.

The Culdees, an ancient monastic sect, had a church here. The Maormores, who were representatives of the King, ruled Ross They almost certainly built a stronghold. Macbeth is believed to have been born in the castle here in 1005 and was himself for a short time Maormore of Ross.

The Norse then ruled Ross. It was the mighty Thorfin who established his "seat of justice" or "thing vollr" on the Greenhill to the west of the town and gave Dingwall its name. Thorfin was the son of a daughter of Malcolm II of Scotland and Sigurd of Caithness, which was held by the kings of Norway. Under Thorfin the castle became the centre of social and judicial life and he brought many Norse people to settle here.
The town dates from the eleventh century.

Dingwall was created a Royal Burgh by Alexander II in 1227.This period also marked the emergence of the Earls of Ross, for two hundred years one of the most powerful families in Scotland. They not only held most of Ross-shire but also owned extensive estates throughout the country. However the last earl, John, was involved in a failed attempt to over throw the throne and the earldom was confiscated by the Crown. Since then the second son of the Monarch has held the title Earl of Ross.

The castle was abandoned in the seventeenth century and fell in to ruin. It was demolished in 1818. Some of the stones were used to build a "doocot" near the site which still stands today.

Dingwall declined in the seventeenth century. The only industry was linen manufacturing introduced in 1760. The town's fortunes improved in 1817 with the building of a harbour by Thomas Telford. A canal was also built to bring in larger ships and although it quickly fell in to disuse there is still a pleasant walk along its banks. The coming of the railway in 1862 brought more prosperity. The town developed as a market town and agricultural centre with a permanent livestock mart.

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Dingwall and the Cromarty Firth

ROSS: Dingwall

1950s

postcards; towns; churches; castles; harbours, canals; firths

Highland Libraries

Highland Libraries' Postcard Collection

This postcard from1956 shows Dingwall and the Cromarty Firth<br /> <br /> On the right is the Free Church designed by the architect John Rhind and built between 1867 and 1870. There is a huge rose window in the south gable.<br /> <br /> To the left of centre is Hill Street and, at its intersection with the High Street, the National Hotel built in 1858<br /> <br /> Dingwall is the county town of Ross and Cromarty. It is situated at the head of the Cromarty Firth at the mouth of the River Peffrey. Its Gaelic name is "Inbhir Pheoran" meaning "Mouth of the Peffrey" but up until 500.AD the mouth of the river was nearer Strathpeffer, 5 miles to the west, and the place where Dingwall now stands was a tidal swamp. It was only at the end of the fifth century that the estuary filled in and the mud flats became solid enough for people to build their houses.<br /> <br /> The Culdees, an ancient monastic sect, had a church here. The Maormores, who were representatives of the King, ruled Ross They almost certainly built a stronghold. Macbeth is believed to have been born in the castle here in 1005 and was himself for a short time Maormore of Ross. <br /> <br /> The Norse then ruled Ross. It was the mighty Thorfin who established his "seat of justice" or "thing vollr" on the Greenhill to the west of the town and gave Dingwall its name. Thorfin was the son of a daughter of Malcolm II of Scotland and Sigurd of Caithness, which was held by the kings of Norway. Under Thorfin the castle became the centre of social and judicial life and he brought many Norse people to settle here.<br /> The town dates from the eleventh century.<br /> <br /> Dingwall was created a Royal Burgh by Alexander II in 1227.This period also marked the emergence of the Earls of Ross, for two hundred years one of the most powerful families in Scotland. They not only held most of Ross-shire but also owned extensive estates throughout the country. However the last earl, John, was involved in a failed attempt to over throw the throne and the earldom was confiscated by the Crown. Since then the second son of the Monarch has held the title Earl of Ross.<br /> <br /> The castle was abandoned in the seventeenth century and fell in to ruin. It was demolished in 1818. Some of the stones were used to build a "doocot" near the site which still stands today.<br /> <br /> Dingwall declined in the seventeenth century. The only industry was linen manufacturing introduced in 1760. The town's fortunes improved in 1817 with the building of a harbour by Thomas Telford. A canal was also built to bring in larger ships and although it quickly fell in to disuse there is still a pleasant walk along its banks. The coming of the railway in 1862 brought more prosperity. The town developed as a market town and agricultural centre with a permanent livestock mart.