Saturday, November 24, 2012

Countdown to St. Andrew's Day - Gretna Green and Ayrshire

Friday, November 30 is St. Andrew's Day.   



This coming week, we'll countdown to St. Andrew's Day with pictures from my family's visits in 2005.   We drove from the Netherlands, through the Chunnel, and onto Scotland.  

Scottish law allowed for "irregular marriages" if the couple declare themselves in front of two witnesses.   The Old Blacksmith's Shop, built in 1710, was the first building across the border.   The blacksmith often performed "anvil" weddings!

The Marriage Room is the first house in Scotland ... and last house in Scotland ... depending upon which way we were driving!

My children pose with an eternal piper!   

Above is the Low Green in Ayr, the common land remaining form a 14th century Royal Charter.   Great place to fly kites!

Ayr is also home of St. John's Tower - the last remaining building of the church where the Scottish Parliament met on April 26, 1315, one year after the Battle of Bannockburn.   

Above is Greenan Castle.  From the Maybole home page (at this link),

Dramatically perched on a sheer coastal cliff south west of Ayr is the lonely ruins of Greenan Tower. Built in 1603 by John Kennedy of Baltersan on the site of an earlier castle raised by the Davidson family, though nothing remains of this castle.

One randomly selected commenter from this week's blogs wins a book choice from my convention stash.  This giveaway is open to all readers.  Comments are open through Saturday, December 1, 10 pm in Hawaii.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, December 2.


Kim in Hawaii

Wide Open Spaces .....


  1. I did not get to visit Gretna Green when I went to Scotland. Another reason to return.

  2. I always love your pictures Kim. Scotland is a really beautiful place to visit, and the scenery is absolutely breath taking. I went to Scotland for a few weeks, when my husband was stationed there, way up in Fraserburgh.

    Thanks for sharing your holiday experience with us.

  3. Great photos! Didn't go to Gretna Green when I went to Scotland years ago... Now I think I will go if we ever go again....

  4. Wonderful pictures. And good for them as to being more tolerant than a lot of people!!

  5. I would love to visit Scotland someday. It's beautiful.

  6. Love the pictures, Kim. I'd love to visit Scotland, but doubtful it will ever happen. I'll just live vicariously through your pictures!

  7. So gorgeous pcs thanks

  8. I love your photos... the boys playing checkers was really fun to see!

  9. Hi Kim!

    A early Happy St. Andrew's Day! I love all your photos of the castles! To think that I complain about cleaning my house - just imagine having to clean an entire castle!

    A;though my husband and I were married in a church I love the idea of a "irregular marriages" so a couple can just declare themselves as long as two witnesses are present! Think of how less expensive it would be! I wish I'd thought of that before both my sons were married! The plane fare and lodging would have cost less than their weddings and the honeymoon would have been included!

    PS: My favorite castle is still Linlithgow Palace even if it is in the lowlands!

  10. My husband's ancestors were from England and Scotland. He has been to England, but I know he would love to visit Scotland sometime.

  11. Interesting photos - thanks for sharing!