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TITLE
Evanton Oral History Project - Eppie Buist (7 of 7 )
EXTERNAL ID
EOHP_EPPIE_BUIST_07
PLACENAME
Evanton
DISTRICT
Dingwall
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ROSS: Kiltearn
DATE OF RECORDING
1991; 1992
PERIOD
1990s
CREATOR
Eppie Buist
SOURCE
Evanton Oral History Project
ASSET ID
41131
KEYWORDS
audios
recollections
oral histories
oral history

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This audio extract is from the Evanton Oral History Project, a project undertaken in 1991-92 by Adrian Clark. In this extract Eppie Buist talks about her farm at Katewell, near Evanton.


And we had fourteen ewes, and one year we had over two hundred percent lambing.

Interviewer: Mmm-hmm.

We had twenty-nine living lambs from fourteen ewes. And then they got a virus; when they were three months old - they were all safely landed and Jimmy was marvellous at borning lambs.

Interviewer: Yes

Wonderful he was. And he had one very naughty one that used to run away when the lamb was going to be born. It's head was out and it wouldn't let you help it any way; it used to run away and Jimmy and I, two in the morning running round that field. I said, 'Jimmy she's started and she won't stop!' and so Jimmy came out, 'Wait you, mistress, till I get the [?] in' and off, off we went, chased round that field, and we caught her. I did a rugger tackle and I caught her, and he deilvered the lambs quite safely. No harm done at all. Two lovely lambs she had every year.

And we had cattle, and we used to go to Wick and buy cattle. Well then we used to take a grazing - they wasn't enough grazing here - we used to winter them, you see, but we summered them on a grazing that we took - and we took a grazing along at Pitmaduthie once. You know, along there? Logie?

Interviewer: Yes.

Well a very, very lovely field with good grass and a burn running through it which is always lovely for cattle. So we took that and we paid an awful lot per acre - two hundred pounds or something - and everybody laughed and said, you know, 'Fancy paying all that for grass'. 'Well' I said, 'they're very good cattle; we'll see out of them.' So I did very careful sums and we did, we saw out very well. I said, 'Jimmy, we'll get some more good cattle from Wick, and we'll get some more grazing. And we had it for several years and we always did well out of it. And we wintered some of them; we had one very wicked one, I remember, we had an awful job. We couldn't get it into a lorry. We got it into a lorry at last and we got it to the Mart, and George McCallum, not the present George, but George from Mountrich, was a terrific buddy of mine, and I said, 'George, I've got this wicked beast and it's going to go to the Mart. Who do you think will buy it?' Well who did buy it but his brother, at Fodderty. He bought it and he said it got out of everything. I said, 'Well that's exactly why we got rid of it.' Well, he sent it to the slaughterhouse at soon as he could catch it.

But Jimmy was so funny. Old Todd used to come and try and buy them off us, you see, privately, and Jimmy would be - I said, 'Jimmy we won't sell them to Todd but put them through the ring. I think we'd get more.' 'Oh no, mistress, no. He's going to offer you a good price.' And I said, 'No, I don't think so.' So I said, 'Jimmy, don't sell it to him without coming' and Jimmy was back between the buyer and me like a yo-yo. He'd come rushing back. Now I said, 'Todd's not going to get it. That beast's worth much more than that' and we got a lot for it. Well, Jimmy couldn't understand that you couldn't get that for every beast and he thought that I was a sort of millionaire on cattle. I mean, you don't make very much on cattle i don't think, not like that. Allan Moore with hundreds and when they're all ten hundredweight's fat, that's rather different, but we just had one or two. And the food that went into them and everything, you know, time and all the rest. I don't think they were a great moneyspinner. But we didn't lose on them; they were all right.

But every now and then we used to buy a batch of cattle, anywhere, Dingwall, or even Wick sometimes, and some of them would not grow at all; they would just be little stunty things, and Jimmy would say, 'Ah canna understand, mistress, how that beast doesn't grow.' Well, I said, 'Jimmy, I can.' I said, 'There's no breeding on those animals.' I said, 'I wouldn't have dogs if I didn't know their breeding.' I said, 'We go to a Mart and we pick up those things and we don't know what their breeding is; they're all mongrels, and perhaps their parents didn't grow, or their grandfather didn't grow.' I said, 'You don't know. You just pick things up on farms.' I said, 'I'm not used to that; I'm used to pedigree things that have a history and you know what you're getting. And if they don't turn out as you - you don't go on with that blood line, you keep changing.' So, he couldn't understand that. He thought they all ought to grow.


Eppie Buist (1910-2008) was a resident of Katewell, near Evanton, Ross-shire. She was born Elizabeth Jean Brooke, in York, but spent most of her life in Ross-shire, breeding and exporting gun dogs across the world. Her family moved to the 14,000-acre Mid-Fearn Estate in Ross-shire when Eppie was a young girl and she and her brothers and sisters were brought up by a series of nannies and governesses. In 1939 she married a young naval officer, Malcolm Buist, whose brother Colin had served as an equerry to Edward VIII. After the war Eppie and Malcolm undertook a series of projects culminating in their move to Katewell, the former mill house for the Glenskiach Distillery. After Malcolm's death in 1965 Eppie continued to breed pointers, attending and winning championships at home and abroad. She remained very active in her later years, driving until she was 95 and taking a glider flight the following year. She died aged 98 and is survived by two daughters, Mary and Jane.

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Evanton Oral History Project - Eppie Buist (7 of 7 )

ROSS: Kiltearn

1990s

audios; recollections; oral histories; oral history

Evanton Oral History Project

Evanton Oral History Project

This audio extract is from the Evanton Oral History Project, a project undertaken in 1991-92 by Adrian Clark. In this extract Eppie Buist talks about her farm at Katewell, near Evanton.<br /> <br /> <br /> And we had fourteen ewes, and one year we had over two hundred percent lambing.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Mmm-hmm.<br /> <br /> We had twenty-nine living lambs from fourteen ewes. And then they got a virus; when they were three months old - they were all safely landed and Jimmy was marvellous at borning lambs.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Yes<br /> <br /> Wonderful he was. And he had one very naughty one that used to run away when the lamb was going to be born. It's head was out and it wouldn't let you help it any way; it used to run away and Jimmy and I, two in the morning running round that field. I said, 'Jimmy she's started and she won't stop!' and so Jimmy came out, 'Wait you, mistress, till I get the [?] in' and off, off we went, chased round that field, and we caught her. I did a rugger tackle and I caught her, and he deilvered the lambs quite safely. No harm done at all. Two lovely lambs she had every year.<br /> <br /> And we had cattle, and we used to go to Wick and buy cattle. Well then we used to take a grazing - they wasn't enough grazing here - we used to winter them, you see, but we summered them on a grazing that we took - and we took a grazing along at Pitmaduthie once. You know, along there? Logie?<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Yes.<br /> <br /> Well a very, very lovely field with good grass and a burn running through it which is always lovely for cattle. So we took that and we paid an awful lot per acre - two hundred pounds or something - and everybody laughed and said, you know, 'Fancy paying all that for grass'. 'Well' I said, 'they're very good cattle; we'll see out of them.' So I did very careful sums and we did, we saw out very well. I said, 'Jimmy, we'll get some more good cattle from Wick, and we'll get some more grazing. And we had it for several years and we always did well out of it. And we wintered some of them; we had one very wicked one, I remember, we had an awful job. We couldn't get it into a lorry. We got it into a lorry at last and we got it to the Mart, and George McCallum, not the present George, but George from Mountrich, was a terrific buddy of mine, and I said, 'George, I've got this wicked beast and it's going to go to the Mart. Who do you think will buy it?' Well who did buy it but his brother, at Fodderty. He bought it and he said it got out of everything. I said, 'Well that's exactly why we got rid of it.' Well, he sent it to the slaughterhouse at soon as he could catch it.<br /> <br /> But Jimmy was so funny. Old Todd used to come and try and buy them off us, you see, privately, and Jimmy would be - I said, 'Jimmy we won't sell them to Todd but put them through the ring. I think we'd get more.' 'Oh no, mistress, no. He's going to offer you a good price.' And I said, 'No, I don't think so.' So I said, 'Jimmy, don't sell it to him without coming' and Jimmy was back between the buyer and me like a yo-yo. He'd come rushing back. Now I said, 'Todd's not going to get it. That beast's worth much more than that' and we got a lot for it. Well, Jimmy couldn't understand that you couldn't get that for every beast and he thought that I was a sort of millionaire on cattle. I mean, you don't make very much on cattle i don't think, not like that. Allan Moore with hundreds and when they're all ten hundredweight's fat, that's rather different, but we just had one or two. And the food that went into them and everything, you know, time and all the rest. I don't think they were a great moneyspinner. But we didn't lose on them; they were all right.<br /> <br /> But every now and then we used to buy a batch of cattle, anywhere, Dingwall, or even Wick sometimes, and some of them would not grow at all; they would just be little stunty things, and Jimmy would say, 'Ah canna understand, mistress, how that beast doesn't grow.' Well, I said, 'Jimmy, I can.' I said, 'There's no breeding on those animals.' I said, 'I wouldn't have dogs if I didn't know their breeding.' I said, 'We go to a Mart and we pick up those things and we don't know what their breeding is; they're all mongrels, and perhaps their parents didn't grow, or their grandfather didn't grow.' I said, 'You don't know. You just pick things up on farms.' I said, 'I'm not used to that; I'm used to pedigree things that have a history and you know what you're getting. And if they don't turn out as you - you don't go on with that blood line, you keep changing.' So, he couldn't understand that. He thought they all ought to grow.<br /> <br /> <br /> Eppie Buist (1910-2008) was a resident of Katewell, near Evanton, Ross-shire. She was born Elizabeth Jean Brooke, in York, but spent most of her life in Ross-shire, breeding and exporting gun dogs across the world. Her family moved to the 14,000-acre Mid-Fearn Estate in Ross-shire when Eppie was a young girl and she and her brothers and sisters were brought up by a series of nannies and governesses. In 1939 she married a young naval officer, Malcolm Buist, whose brother Colin had served as an equerry to Edward VIII. After the war Eppie and Malcolm undertook a series of projects culminating in their move to Katewell, the former mill house for the Glenskiach Distillery. After Malcolm's death in 1965 Eppie continued to breed pointers, attending and winning championships at home and abroad. She remained very active in her later years, driving until she was 95 and taking a glider flight the following year. She died aged 98 and is survived by two daughters, Mary and Jane.