Scottish Gaelic or Scots Gaelic, sometimes referred to as Gaelic, is a Celtic language native to Scotland. A member of the Goidelic branch of the Celtic languages, Scottish Gaelic, like Modern Irish and Manx, developed out of Middle Irish. The 2011 census of Scotland showed that a total of 57,375 people in Scotland could speak Gaelic at that time, the census results indicate a decline of 1,275 Gaelic speakers from 2001. A total of 87,056 people in 2011 reported having some facility with Gaelic compared to 93,282 people in 2001, only about half of speakers were fully literate in the language. Nevertheless, revival efforts exist and the number of speakers of the language under age 20 has increased, Scottish Gaelic is neither an official language of the European Union nor the United Kingdom. Outside Scotland, a group of dialects collectively known as Canadian Gaelic are spoken in parts of Atlantic Canada, mainly Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. In the 2011 census, there were 7,195 total speakers of Gaelic languages in Canada, with 1,365 in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island where the responses mainly refer to Scottish Gaelic.
About 2,320 Canadians in 2011 claimed Gaelic languages as their mother tongue, with over 300 in Nova Scotia, aside from Scottish Gaelic, the language may be referred to simply as Gaelic. In Scotland, the word Gaelic in reference to Scottish Gaelic specifically is pronounced, outside Ireland and Great Britain, Gaelic may refer to the Irish language. Scottish Gaelic should not be confused with Scots, the Middle English-derived language varieties which had come to be spoken in most of the Lowlands of Scotland by the modern era. Prior to the 15th century, these dialects were known as Inglis by its own speakers, from the late 15th century, however, it became increasingly common for such speakers to refer to Scottish Gaelic as Erse and the Lowland vernacular as Scottis. Today, Scottish Gaelic is recognised as a language from Irish. Gaelic in Scotland was mostly confined to Dál Riata until the 8th century, when it began expanding into Pictish areas north of the Firth of Forth, by 900, Pictish appears to have become extinct, completely replaced by Gaelic.
An exception might be made for the Northern Isles, however, though the Pictish language did not disappear suddenly, a process of Gaelicisation was clearly underway during the reigns of Caustantín and his successors. By a certain point, probably during the 11th century, all the inhabitants of Alba had become fully Gaelicised Scots, by the 10th century, Gaelic had become the dominant language throughout northern and western Scotland, the Gaelo-Pictic Kingdom of Alba. Its spread to southern Scotland, was even and totalizing. Place name analysis suggests dense usage of Gaelic in Galloway and adjoining areas to the north and west as well as in West Lothian, less dense usage is suggested for north Ayrshire, the Clyde Valley and eastern Dumfriesshire. In south-eastern Scotland, there is no evidence that Gaelic was ever widely spoken, the area shifted from Cumbric to Old English during its long incorporation into the Anglo-Saxon Kingdom of Northumbria
Swona is an uninhabited island in the Pentland Firth off the north coast of Scotland. Swona is the northerly of two islands in the Pentland Firth between the Orkney Islands and Caithness on the Scottish mainland. It lies in the approach to Scapa Flow, west of South Ronaldsay. Situated in the stream of the Pentland Firth, a tidal race is present at both the north and south ends of the island, being minimal briefly at the turn of the tide. Between the races is a calm eddy which extends down-tide as the tide strengthens, the races are highly visible, with over-falls and whirlpools. Large swell waves can be present, especially in bad weather conditions, Swona is about 1.25 miles long by about 0.5 miles wide, with a maximum height of approximately 41 metres and an area of about 92 hectares. It is made up of Old Red Sandstone with cliffs on the east coast and it is administered as part of the Orkney Islands, while Stroma, to the south, is part of the Highland Region. In 2005 Swona was owned by two Orkney farmers, but not worked due to difficulty of access and it is a SSSI conservation area with a number of rare plants.
The island takes its name from Old Norse, Svíney or Swefney, there is a similarly named island, Svínoy, in the Faroe Islands. There are prehistoric, pre-Norse and Norse remains on the island, as well as the remains of more recent crofting settlement including a herd of feral cattle. The island was populated from around 500 BC until 1974, boats were built on the island for a number of years. The last of these, the Hood can be seen pulled well up the beach by the landing stage. It is no longer seaworthy, having a hole in it caused by the feral cows using it as a rubbing post, the landing stage and boat can be seen briefly in passing through a gap in the rocks near the north end of the island on the east side. The last house to be occupied can be seen in this area, the island was the site of many shipwrecks caused by the strong currents in the Pentland Firth. In 1931, a 6,000 ton Danish freighter called Pennsylvania was wrecked on the island, the Orkney newspaper of the time said that it was one of the most richly-laden ships that was ever wrecked in the area.
After some salvaging, the wreck was bought by a syndicate of Stroma. The Swona Minor light was built in 1906 on the south west tip of Swona and it was originally a cast iron tower but was replaced by a reinforced concrete square tower sometime in the 1980s. The earlier Stroma Lighthouse was built in 1896 and stands at the end of Stroma island
Alexander Elliot Anderson Salmond is a Scottish politician who served as the fourth First Minister of Scotland from 2007 to 2014. He was the leader of the Scottish National Party for over twenty years and he is currently the Member of Parliament for Gordon and is the SNP International Affairs and Europe spokesperson in the House of Commons, following his election to the UK House of Commons in 2015. From 1987 to 2010, Salmond previously served as MP for Banff, Salmond served as the Member of the Scottish Parliament for Gordon from 2007 to 2011, and for Aberdeenshire East from 2011 to 2016. Salmond resigned as SNP leader in 2000 and did not seek re-election to the Scottish Parliament and he did however retain his Westminster seat in the 2001 general election. Salmond was once again elected SNP leader in 2004 and the year held his Banff. After the SNP secured confidence and supply support from the Scottish Green Party, during his first term, he headed a minority Scottish Government. Politically, Salmond is one of the foremost proponents of Scottish independence, Salmond has campaigned on global warming and in government has committed Scotland to legislation on emission reduction and the generation of renewable energy.
He was succeeded as SNP leader by his deputy, Nicola Sturgeon and he submitted his resignation as First Minister on 18 November, and was succeeded by Sturgeon the following day. Salmond was born in his parents home at 101 Preston Road, West Lothian, Scotland and he is the second of four children born to Robert Fyfe Findlay Salmond, born 1921, and Mary Stewart Salmond, both of whom were civil servants. Robert Salmond, who served in the Royal Navy during the Second World War, had worked as an electrician. Salmond attended the local Linlithgow Academy from 1966 to 1972, during his time at St Andrews, Salmond lived in Andrew Melville Hall. He was elected as Vice-President of the Students Representative Council in 1977 and was nominated to join St Andrews Community Council that year. Salmond graduated with a 2,2 Joint Honours MA in Economics, in 1978 he entered the Government Economic Service as an Assistant Economist in the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries for Scotland, part of the now defunct Scottish Office.
Two years he joined the staff of the Royal Bank of Scotland where he worked for seven years, in 1982 he was appointed Oil Economist, and from 1984 he worked as a bank economist as well as continuing to hold the position of Oil Economist. While with the Royal Bank, he wrote and broadcast extensively for both domestic and international outlets and he contributed regularly to oil and energy conferences. In 1983 Salmond created a Royal Bank/BBC oil index that is still used, Salmond married Moira McGlashan in 1981. Moira was a civil servant 17 years his senior. They closely protect their lives and live in a converted mill in Strichen
Firth is a word in the Scots and English languages used to denote various coastal waters in Scotland and England. In mainland Scotland, it is used to refer to a sea bay. In the Northern Isles, it usually refers to a smaller inlet. It is linguistically cognate to fjord which has a more constrained sense in English, bodies of water named firths tend to be more common on the east coast, or in the southwest of the country, although the Firth of Lorn is an exception to this. The Highland coast contains numerous estuaries and inlets of a kind, but not called firth, instead. The Pentland Firth is a rather than a bay or an inlet. Firth of Lorn (northernmost, connects with the Moray Firth via the Great Glen lochs, lochs adjoining the Firth, Loch Lochy, Loch Linnhe, Loch Leven, Loch Oich. Islands, Isle of Mull and Kerrera, Firth of Clyde Sea lochs adjoining the Firth of Clyde, Gare Loch, Loch Long, Holy Loch, Loch Striven, Loch Riddon off the Kyles of Bute, Loch Fyne and Campbeltown Loch. Places, Port Glasgow, Gourock, Rothesay, Wemyss Bay, Brodick, Troon, Ayr and Campbeltown.
Note that Glasgow is at the limit of the River Clyde, and Clydebank. The Firth is off the Solway Coast, rough Firth Places, England on the River Eden and Gretna, both in Scotland. Luce Bay, Wigtown, St Bees, Aspatria These are connected to, or form part of, Dornoch Firth Places, Dornoch Bridge, Bonar Bridge, Kyle of Sutherland, Portmahomack on Tarbat Ness. Rivers, Cassley and Carron Headland, Tarbat Ness, the Firth runs out into the Moray Firth. Rivers, Orrin, Glass, Moray Firth and Beauly Firth connected with the Firth of Inverness. Places on the Moray Firth, Nairn, headlands, Whiteness Head, Chanonry Point, Alturlie Point. Places on the Beauly Firth, Places, Dundee, Tayport, Newport on Tay, Fife. It is spanned by the Forth Road Bridge,2,512 m long, and this is a strait between the Scottish mainland and the Orkney Islands, and forms a link between the Atlantic Ocean and North Sea. In Shetland in particular, firth can refer to smaller inlets, although geo, bluemull Sound for example, is very similar to some of the firths in the Shetland Islands
Pentland Ferries is a privately owned, family company which has operated a ferry service between Gills Bay in Caithness, Scotland and St Margarets Hope on South Ronaldsay in Orkney since May 2001. The company is one of two major vehicle ferry operators plying within Scotland which are not subsidised by the Scottish Government or local authorities. Pentland Ferries was founded by its present managing director, Mr Andrew Banks, in October that year he purchased the Caledonian MacBrayne passenger and vehicle ferry Iona. Banks obtained a 99-year lease on the Gills Bay terminal, about 3 miles west of John o Groats, after two years work improving the site, and further work at St Margarets Hope, he started operating the short sea crossing with Pentalina B in May 2001. The service operates year-round with the custom built passenger and vehicle catamaran Pentalina, an earlier attempt to operate the short sea crossing between Caithness and Orkney had been abandoned in 1989, mainly because of the exposed conditions at Gills Bay.
Andrew Banks was recognized in the 2014 Honors list and in March 2014 was awarded an OBE by Queen Elizabeth II and he attended the ceremony at Buckingham Palace with his wife and three daughters, Laura & Jenni. The current catamaran ferry, MV Pentalina, was built in the Philippines for the Pentland Firth, the ferry has a capacity of 350 passengers and either 32 cars and 8 articulated lorries or an increased number of cars, with a service speed of 18 knots. The original ferry, former Caledonian MacBrayne vessel MV Iona, was purchased in October 1997, the first drive-through MacBrayne ferry with both bow and stern doors, she carried around 50 cars, or 4–5 articulated lorries and fewer cars. During the off-seasons since 2006, she was chartered out, carrying livestock across the channel from Dover and she was sold to an owner in Cape Verde in late 2009. Another former CalMac vessel, MV Claymore, was owned between October 2002 and March 2009, after another attempt at starting up the Orkney to Invergordon route fell through, the vessel was put to work during the winter season in place of Pentalina-B.
Claymore was sold in March 2009, in Feb 2015 the company has bought MV Saturn, to be used as a freight vessel. The Short Sea Crossing is the quickest route across the Pentland Firth by car, due to the short sailing time the vessels have a cafeteria for meals and refreshments, but no cabin accommodation. An order for a new ferry has been placed with Strategic Marine with funding secured from Bank of Scotland. It is due to be delivered to Orkney in Spring 2018 and is being built in a shipyard in Vung-Tau, Pentland Ferries – Official Website Pentland Ferries – Unofficial Ships Data and History Website Pictures Pentalina B / Claymore St Margarets Hope Pier
Dunnet Head is a peninsula in Caithness, on the north coast of Scotland. Dunnet Head includes the most northerly point of the mainland of Great Britain, the point, known as Easter Head, is at 58°40′21″N 03°22′31″W, about 18 km west-northwest of John o Groats and about 20 km from Duncansby Head. Dunnet Head can be seen as the limit of the Pentland Firth on the firths southern, or Caithness. Although Easter Head is the most northerly point on the Scottish mainland, the headlands boundary with the rest of the Scottish mainland can be defined as a north-south line running from Little Clett to the mouth of Dunnet Burn in Dunnet Bay. This line is followed along most of its route by a track road, the B855. From this line, the headland projects westward and northward into the Atlantic Ocean, burifa Hill on Dunnet Head was the site of the master station and a monitoring station of the northern GEE chain of radio navigation stations during World War II. There was a range on Dunnet Head during World War II.
Dunnet Head lochs are restocked every two years with brown trout fry, fishing by permit is between the 1st of April until early October. Day, evening & weekly permits are available from CH Haygarth & Sons Fishing Tackle shop, Dunnet Head was the meridian of the 6 inch and 1,2500 Ordnance Survey maps of Caithness
A strait is a naturally formed, typically navigable waterway that connects two larger bodies of water. Most commonly it is a channel of water that lies between two land masses, some straits are not navigable, for example because they are too shallow, or because of an unnavigable reef or archipelago. The terms channel, pass or passage, can be synonymous and used interchangeably with strait, in Scotland firth or kyle are sometimes used as synonyms for strait. Straits can be important shipping routes, and wars have been fought for control of them, numerous artificial channels, called canals, have been constructed to connect two bodies of water over land, such as the Suez Canal. Although rivers and canals often provide passage between two large lakes or a lake and a sea, and these seem to suit the formal definition of strait, the term strait is typically reserved for much larger, wider features of the marine environment. There are exceptions, with straits being called canals, Pearse Canal, Straits are the converse of isthmuses.
That is, while a strait lies between two masses and connects two larger bodies of water, an isthmus lies between two bodies of water and connects two larger land masses. Some straits have the potential to generate significant tidal power using tidal stream turbines, tides are more predictable than wave power or wind power. The Pentland Firth may be capable of generating 10 GW, cook Strait in New Zealand may be capable of generating 5. There may be no suspension of innocent passage through such straits, list of straits Media related to Straits at Wikimedia Commons
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and covers the northern third of the island of Great Britain. It shares a border with England to the south, and is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east. In addition to the mainland, the country is made up of more than 790 islands, including the Northern Isles, the Kingdom of Scotland emerged as an independent sovereign state in the Early Middle Ages and continued to exist until 1707. By inheritance in 1603, James VI, King of Scots, became King of England and King of Ireland, Scotland subsequently entered into a political union with the Kingdom of England on 1 May 1707 to create the new Kingdom of Great Britain. The union created a new Parliament of Great Britain, which succeeded both the Parliament of Scotland and the Parliament of England. Within Scotland, the monarchy of the United Kingdom has continued to use a variety of styles, the legal system within Scotland has remained separate from those of England and Wales and Northern Ireland, Scotland constitutes a distinct jurisdiction in both public and private law.
Glasgow, Scotlands largest city, was one of the worlds leading industrial cities. Other major urban areas are Aberdeen and Dundee, Scottish waters consist of a large sector of the North Atlantic and the North Sea, containing the largest oil reserves in the European Union. This has given Aberdeen, the third-largest city in Scotland, the title of Europes oil capital, following a referendum in 1997, a Scottish Parliament was re-established, in the form of a devolved unicameral legislature comprising 129 members, having authority over many areas of domestic policy. Scotland is represented in the UK Parliament by 59 MPs and in the European Parliament by 6 MEPs, Scotland is a member nation of the British–Irish Council, and the British–Irish Parliamentary Assembly. Scotland comes from Scoti, the Latin name for the Gaels, the Late Latin word Scotia was initially used to refer to Ireland. By the 11th century at the latest, Scotia was being used to refer to Scotland north of the River Forth, alongside Albania or Albany, the use of the words Scots and Scotland to encompass all of what is now Scotland became common in the Late Middle Ages.
Repeated glaciations, which covered the land mass of modern Scotland. It is believed the first post-glacial groups of hunter-gatherers arrived in Scotland around 12,800 years ago, the groups of settlers began building the first known permanent houses on Scottish soil around 9,500 years ago, and the first villages around 6,000 years ago. The well-preserved village of Skara Brae on the mainland of Orkney dates from this period and it contains the remains of an early Bronze Age ruler laid out on white quartz pebbles and birch bark. It was discovered for the first time that early Bronze Age people placed flowers in their graves, in the winter of 1850, a severe storm hit Scotland, causing widespread damage and over 200 deaths. In the Bay of Skaill, the storm stripped the earth from a large irregular knoll, when the storm cleared, local villagers found the outline of a village, consisting of a number of small houses without roofs. William Watt of Skaill, the laird, began an amateur excavation of the site, but after uncovering four houses
The Pentland Hills are a range of hills to the south-west of Edinburgh, Scotland. The range is around 20 miles in length, and runs south west from Edinburgh towards Biggar, the Pentland Hills Regional Park was designated in 1986. It covers an area of 90 km² at the end of the hills. Today most of the land is pasture, along with a few forestry plantations. The Ministry of Defence have a range at Castlelaw. Much of Edinburghs water supply is from reservoirs in the hills, including Threipmuir, Clubbiedean, Glencorse, a number of rivers rise in the hills, including the Water of Leith and the North Esk. In the southern part of the hills is Little Sparta, the garden of the late artist, the hills were most likely settled and defended in the pre-Roman and Roman era by the local Celtic people known to the Romans as the Votadini. About 20 m into Glencorse Reservoir lie the ruins of the chapel of St Katherines in the Hope. The founding of the chapel is connected with the story of a royal deer hunt. The dogs managed to bring down the deer, and in gratitude, the incident is commemorated by the Covenanters Grave, a cairn after which one of the drove roads across the hills is known
Tidal power or tidal energy is a form of hydropower that converts the energy obtained from tides into useful forms of power, mainly electricity. Although not yet used, tidal power has potential for future electricity generation. Tides are more predictable than wind energy and solar power, tide mills have been used both in Europe and on the Atlantic coast of North America. The incoming water was contained in large ponds, and as the tide went out. The earliest occurrences date from the Middle Ages, or even from Roman times, the process of using falling water and spinning turbines to create electricity was introduced in the U. S. and Europe in the 19th century. The worlds first large-scale tidal power plant was the Rance Tidal Power Station in France and it was the largest tidal power station in terms of output until Sihwa Lake Tidal Power Station opened in South Korea in August,2011. The Sihwa station uses sea wall defense barriers complete with 10 turbines generating 254 MW, Tidal power is taken from the Earths oceanic tides.
Tidal forces are periodic variations in gravitational attraction exerted by celestial bodies and these forces create corresponding motions or currents in the worlds oceans. Due to the attraction to the oceans, a bulge in the water level is created. When the sea level is raised, water from the middle of the ocean is forced to move toward the shorelines and this occurrence takes place in an unfailing manner, due to the consistent pattern of the moon’s orbit around the earth. Tidal power is the technology that draws on energy inherent in the orbital characteristics of the Earth–Moon system. Other natural energies exploited by human technology originate directly or indirectly with the Sun, including fuel, conventional hydroelectric, biofuel, wave. A tidal generator converts the energy of tidal flows into electricity, greater tidal variation and higher tidal current velocities can dramatically increase the potential of a site for tidal electricity generation. This loss of energy has caused the rotation of the Earth to slow in the 4.5 billion years since its formation.
During the last 620 million years the period of rotation of the earth has increased from 21.9 hours to 24 hours, while tidal power will take additional energy from the system, the effect is negligible and would only be noticed over millions of years. Some tidal generators can be built into the structures of existing bridges or are entirely submersed, land constrictions such as straits or inlets can create high velocities at specific sites, which can be captured with the use of turbines. These turbines can be horizontal, open, or ducted, Tidal barrages make use of the potential energy in the difference in height between high and low tides. When using tidal barrages to generate power, the energy from a tide is seized through strategic placement of specialized dams
Duncansby Head is the most north-easterly part of the Scottish mainland, including even the famous John o Groats, Highland. The headland juts into the North Sea, with the Pentland Firth to its north and west, the point is marked by Duncansby Head Lighthouse, built by David Alan Stevenson in 1924. A minor public road leads from John o Groats to Duncansby Head, the Duncansby Head Site of Special Scientific Interest includes the 6.5 km stretch of coast south to Skirza Head. It includes the Duncansby Stacks, prominent sea stacks just off the coast, List of lighthouses in Scotland List of Northern Lighthouse Board lighthouses Northern Lighthouse Board
First Minister of Scotland
The First Minister of Scotland is the leader of the Scottish Government. The First Minister chairs the Scottish Cabinet and is responsible for the formulation, development. The First Minister is a Member of the Scottish Parliament and nominated by the Scottish Parliament before being appointed by the monarch. Members of the Cabinet and junior ministers of the Scottish Government as well as the Scottish law officers, are appointed by the First Minister. As head of the Scottish Government, the First Minister is directly accountable to the Scottish Parliament for their actions, nicola Sturgeon of the Scottish National Party is the current First Minister of Scotland. The process was known as devolution and was initiated to give Scotland some measure of home rule or self-governance in its affairs, such as health, education. The Secretary of State was a member of the British Cabinet, since 1999, the Secretary of State has a much reduced role as a result of the transfer of responsibilities to the Scottish Parliament and Scottish Government.
The First Minister is nominated by the Scottish Parliament from among its members at the beginning of each term and he or she is formally appointed by the monarch. In theory, any member of the Scottish Parliament can be nominated for First Minister, the government must be answerable to, and acceptable to, the Scottish Parliament to gain supply. For this reason, the First Minister is almost always the leader of the largest party, there is no term of office for a First Minister, he or she holds office at Her Majestys pleasure. In practice, he or she holds office as long as he or she retains the confidence of the chamber, given the additional member system used to elect its members, it is difficult for a single party to gain an overall majority of seats in the Scottish Parliament. The SNP gained a majority of seats in the 2011 election. After the election of the Scottish Parliament, a First Minister must be nominated within a period of 28 days. Under the terms of the Scotland Act, if the Parliament fails to nominate a First Minister, within this frame, it will be dissolved.
If an incumbent First Minister is defeated in a general election, the First Minister only leaves office when the Scottish Parliament nominates a successor individual. After accepting office, the First Minister takes the Official Oath, the oath is tendered by the Lord President of the Court of Session at a sitting of the Court in Parliament House in Edinburgh. The oath is, I, do swear that I will well and truly serve Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth in the office of First Minister, the period in office of a First Minister is not linked to the term of Members of the Scottish Parliament. The Scotland Act set out a maximum term for each session of Parliament