Strathpeffer History

Attribution: unknown (The ruin of Free Church in Jamestown)

Strathpeffer Spa

What makes Strathpeffer unique among British holiday resorts is, of course, its Spa, the curative properties of the mineral waters of which are known all over the world. The history of the Spa dates back to the end of the eighteenth century, when in 1777, after the waters had enjoyed a great local repute for healing, the factor of the then forfeited Cromartie Estates persuaded the Royal Commision to make a geological examination, with the result that several powerful springs of chalybeate and sulphur water were discovered. But it was not until the beginning of the last century that the Spa began to develop on modern lines. Dr. Thomas Morrison, an Aberdeenshire physician, who had cured himself of a chronic rheumatic affection by the Strathpeffer waters, and knew of cases similar to his own which had benefited by the same treatment, decided to make known the health virtues of the resort. He took up residence at Elsick Cottage, now Elsick House. In 1819, he built the first Pumproom, a modest building over “the Strong Well,” on the site of the present Bathing Establishment. Subsequently the Cromartie family bought back the forfeited estates and had restored the Earldom attained when the family went out in the ’45, and steps were taken to develop the Spa. In 1861 a stone and lime building for both Wells and Baths was erected on the site of the old wooden Pumproom. In 1871 an upper storey and new bathrooms were added: in 1881 another suite of baths was erected, and the whole system for conserving the waters was completely revolutionised. Since then, however, the Spa has been completely transformed. In 1907 the Countess of Cromartie sold the wells and baths to a London syndicate, which has not only developed the Spa on the most efficent and up-to-date methods, but has done so with an admirable sense of artistic values.

Read more in this interesting booklet……


Attribution: unknown

History of the Old Station

Click on the button below to read more about the history of the old station.  If you want too view other photographs of the station visit

Strathpeffer station building

Attribution: unknown

The Biography of Strathpeffer

Read more about Strathpeffer in this really interesting book.

The Heights Heritage

In September of the year 2001, a group of ‘Heights Folk’ worked together to mount an exhibition in the Achterneed Hall, Heights, Strathpeffer. It was an outstanding success. The photographs from the Heights Heritage Exhibition have been divided into several categories.

An Army camp, possibly 1939

Attribution: unknown

School Log Book

These extracts were prepared by Sarah Bradley, August 2001

“I hope the contents will be of some interest to those who enjoy local history. It was difficult to decide what should be left out. The following extracts are really just a taster.” – Sarah Bradley

Historical Photographs

This album contains a range of historical photographs.

Click on photo album to view thumbnails and then click thumbnail to see the full size images 

Archaeology - The Crannog in Loch Kinellan

In September 1999, class 7 of Fodderty Primary School, with Mrs Thomson as their teacher, undertook a study of Crannogs. The result of their efforts follows.

September 1999, class 7 of Fodderty Primary School

Attribution: unknown

The Neil M. Gunn Monument

The Neil M. Gunn Monument was erected on Heights of Brae, Strathpeffer in 1987, as a consequence of the enthusiasm of the Trustees, seven local people. The monument itself consists of a central ‘standing stone’; round the base are carved Caithness slabs, depicting themes central to Neil Gunn’s writing. The Monument is situated in a very natural setting near the foothills of Ben Wyvis, and close to the route taken by the author as he made his way on his daily walk from Brae Farm House, up through the fields behind the house and on to the moor to the North of the monument. The thinking behind the ‘Tryst Gate’, the wrought-iron gate at the entrance to the monument, was of Neil’s words being read and their influence radiating in all directions to other peoples.

Click on photo album to view thumbnails and then click thumbnail to see the full size images 

Statistical Accounts

On the 25 May 1790, Sir John Sinclair, Baronet of Ulbster in Caithness wrote to over nine hundred Parish ministers throughout Scotland asking them to contribute to a Statistical Inquiry by answering as best they could,a series of one hundred and sixty-six Queries respecting each Parish.

The New (or Second) Statistical Account of Scotland built on the previous work carried out by Sir John Sinclair for the First Statistical Accounts by including the knowledge of local doctors and schoolmasters. The Second Statistical Accounts were published between 1834 and 1845.

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