Sunday, 11 November 2012

John O'Groats Update

Wandering around Caithness in half-term week a few things stood out as signs of economic progress.

     The Rural Retreats development at John O'Groats adds a huge tourist draw to our northern outpost, tempting travellers to tarry in Caithness and visit the many magnificent sites that our county has to offer, rather than hop directly over to Orkney. The chalets and apartments built into the extended hotel shell completely change the balance of the site for the better. The fabric of the old Victorian hotel has been completely renewed and the multicoloured extension looks dramatically Scandinavian from the harbour/sea side.

 One thing that never changes at John O' Groats is the family obsession with finding Groatie Buckies, the small cowrie shells that are said to bring good luck to the finder. There was stiff competition among the grandchildren to bag the highest total. Emma was the winner with 83 closely followed by Ben with 73. They are still wearing the 'pixies' purchased on Orkney a few days earlier. I hope the John O' Groats developers have taken the precaution of gathering a few buckies for themselves.
The Stuart Agenda by Alan Calder published by Willow Moon. e-Book and paperback at all Amazon sites. Reviews at


  1. I could use a Groatie Buckie or two, Alan :-) Interesting post. I enjoy visiting Scotland through your blog.

  2. Thanks Pat. I'll try to let you see more.