Ellon Probus meeting given talk about the history of the Gordon Highlanders

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VICE President David Couzin welcomed 22 members to the meeting held on August 9. He introduced guest speaker and fellow member Charles Reid to the members present.

Charles spoke about the Gordon Highlanders’ Museum at St Luke’s, Viewfield Road, Aberdeen, and his role as a volunteer researcher with the museum. Having served in the Army himself, and having a keen interest in military history, this was an ideal pastime for him once retirement arrived.

Members were first given a brief history of the regiment and enlightened about their uniforms, badges etc as worn by the regiment through the years. Some interesting snippets for example were if you remove the yellow check from the regimental tartan, you end up with the tartan worn by the Black Watch.

He also spoke about the picture and paintings of famous soldiers in the museum. General Hector MacDonald, known as “Fighting Mac”, probably being the most famous of all. As a young Colonel he was largely credited with winning the day at the battle of Omdurman in Sudan.

The museum building known as St Luke’s was first purchased by the MOD for the regiment in 1960. In 1994 the trustees of the Gordon Highlanders bought the building from the MOD and an extension was added in 1997. It is now independently funded and run largely by volunteers, there being around six full-time salaried staff.

Charles gave a very interesting presentation and said the museum is always worth a visit. Even if you don’t appreciate regimental history, the cafe/restaurant is excellent. A vote of thanks was given by Fraser Cushnie.