The Fishwives Route
The Fishwives Route
Follow the footsteps of the Fishwives.
The Fishwives Path starts at the Buckie & District Fishing Heritage Centre where you will discover the unique fishing history of this lovely part of the Moray Firth.
Men from this coast have always fished the sea; however the introduction of herring fishing in the 19th Century brought major changes. Harbours were developed, boats became bigger, and in addition to exporting catches by sea, the railways distributed large quantities of fish to the home market. Fishing had become an industry.
Distribution to the people in the immediate hinterland was done on foot by fishwives with wicker baskets on their backs, each carrying about 40lbs of fish. Their trade was mostly by barter, exchanging fish for farm produce. All along the coast scores of fishwives would follow individual routes and have their own customers.
“The Fishwives Path to Keith” celebrates their walk of thirteen miles approximatley from Buckie to Keith, visiting farms and crofts on the way. The first six miles of the fishwife’s route took her south over the skyline, to look out over the valley of the River Isla, before continuing for another six miles through Newmill
THE ROUTE AND FEATURES OF INTEREST:
Fine views of the Banffshire countryside and Moray Firth, with added interested of historical connection of the Fishwives.
The settlements along the route offer a glimpse into past of this part of Banffshire.
Buckie is largest town in Banffshire. Back in late 19th Century was one of the most important herring fishing ports in Scotland and up until recently was important location for the repair and maintenance of RNLI life boats.
Newmill is a great example of ‘planned’ village.
Keith is one of Scotland’s first planned towns and has 3 distilleries, which one is the oldest legally operating distillery in Highlands-the Strathisla Distillery. One time textiles played a major influence in the wealth of Keith, but sadly the only thing left is the Keith Kilt and textile centre, the only school of its kind in the world, where students are trained in the art of kilt making. Keith has two renowned festivals, the Keith Country Music festival in early June and Keith Country Show in early August.
A path which is generally over four miles, with varying surfaces and gradients along its length. In some instances the path could be less than four miles where it has excessive gradient and/or covers rough terrain.
ESTIMATED WALKING TIME:
00 Day(s) 06 Hour(s) 00 Minute(s)
HEIGHT CLIMBED AND DEGREE OF SLOPE:
The route climbs from the sea at Buckie to around 270 metres ( 900ft) above sea level.From both the Keith and Buckie ends the path rises gradually to the highest point at Addie Hill.
There are no barriers to access and all gates across the route can be used by horse riders, cyclists and pedestrians.
Nearly two thirds of the route is along tarmac roads and paths which are easy to negotiate. The rest is on farm/forestry tracks and grassy paths; the surface in places is rough and uneven and can be muddy in wet weather.
Suitable for more able and energetic walkers. The off road sections would be of interest to horse riders and mountain bikers.
The whole route is covered by a public right of access, which has been established by Scottish Law. With these rights come responsibilities, which are spelled out in the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
For more information visit: www.outdooraccess-scotland.com
Considerable sections of the route are along quite,narrow country roads where traffic flows are low.Nevertheless please take care as there are no pavements.Please also take care when crossing the busy A98 Inchgower Distillery near Buckie.Users need to decide for themselves whether they feel comfortable following the road section along the B9116 between Newmill and Keith where they will be exposed to fast moving traffic.Stout footwear and waterproof clothing are essential as parts of the route are exposed and can be rough and wet.
As a working forest,it is not unusal to find the Forestry Commission working there through the summer.The public may come across a diversion on the route;we do ask that you follow any signs as there are for your own safety.
You now have a ‘right of access’ to most of Scotland’s outdoors including the Fishwives Path. You are required to act responsibly in accordance with the new Scottish Outdoor Access Code (SOAC).
Know the Code before you go! Find out more by visiting
Visit www.morayways.org.uk for your complete guide to outdoor access in Moray.
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