Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for Boyndie

Boyndie, a coast parish of Banffshire containing towards its NE angle the fishing village of Whitehills, 2½ miles WNW of the post-town Banff, and 4½ miles E of Portsoy. Bounded N by the Moray Firth, E by Banff, SE by Marnoch, SW by Ordiquhill, and W by Fordyce, it has an extreme length from N by E to S by W of 6 miles, a breadth from E to W of from ½ to 3 ¾ miles, and a land area of 6945 acres. The coast, about 4½ miles long, has some sandy beach, but is mostly rocky, rising to 110 feet above sea-level at Knock Head, 37 at Stake Ness, and 158 at Boyne Bay, where the Burn of Boyne enters the sea, after flowing 5½ miles along all the Fordyce boundary. The 7 miles course of -the Burn of Boyndie lies chiefly on the eastern border; and between these two streams the surface, over more than half the parish, is low and flat, though with a general southward rise, attaining 264 feet near Whyntie, 183 at the church, 248 at Rettie, 250 at Bankhead, 337 near Loanhead, 449 at Hill of Rothen, and 516 at Blackhills. The formation is Silurian, greywacke prevailing in the E and often alternating with micaceous clay-slate, whilst hornblende of a slaty character occupies over a mile of the seaboard, and is succeeded westward by violently-contorted limestone. The soil as a rule is light and not very productive; but, along the low-lying valley of the Burn of Boyndie, is either clay, clay-loam, or black sandy mould, and of great fertility. Nearly three-fourths of the whole area are under cultivation, and the plantations of Whyntie, Lodgehill, etc., cover about one-eighth more. Antiquities are ` St Brandan's Stanes,' a number of megaliths, at Lodgehill; the old ruined church of Inverboyndie, dedicated to St Brandan, and anciently held by Arbroath Abbey, in the NE; and in the NW, Boyne House or Castle, from 1485 a seat of the Ogilvies, ancestors of the Earls of Seafield, but deserted soon after the Union, and now a beautiful ruin, overhanging the steep, wooded glen of the Boyne, near its mouth. The two last have been favourite haunts of Thomas Edward, the Banffshire naturalist; and both are depicted in his Life by Smiles (Lond. 1877). Natives were Thomas Ruddiman (16741757), the Latin grammarian, and Elspeth Buchan (1738-91), founder of a fanatical sect, the Buchanites. The Earl of Seafield divides the property with three lesser landowners; but there are no mansions, and the only important modern edifice is the Banffshire Lunatic Asylum, a large and handsome building, erected near Ladysbridge station in 1865. Disjoined from Banff in 1635, Boyndie is in the presbytery of Fordyce and synod of Aberdeen, the minister's income being £366; but the southern portion (with 195 inhabitants in 1871) is included in the quoad sacra parish of Ord. The present church (1773; 600 sittings) stands 1 mile W by N of Ladysbridge, and there is also a Free church. Two public schools, Boyndie and Whitehills, with respective accommodation for 102 and 190 children, had (1879) an average attendance of 82 and 163, and grants of £72,17s. and £124,4s. Val. (1882) £8160. Pop. (1801) 1122, (1861) 1711, (1871) 1854, (1881) 2004.—Ord. Sur., sh. 96,1876.

(F.H. Groome, Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland (1882-4); © 2004 Gazetteer for Scotland)

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a coast parish"   (ADL Feature Type: "countries, 4th order divisions")
Administrative units: Boyndie ScoP       Banffshire ScoCnty
Place: Boyndie

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