Stuartfield

Surprisingly for such a pretty village, arguably the prettiest planned village in Buchan, Pratt has little to write about Stuartfield. It marks the southern boundary of the lush and bosky valley of Deer, a surprising contrast to the bleak and largely treeless Buchan plain.

The housing is mostly one- and two-storey cottages built in the 19th century. There is little cherry-cocking in the masonry which is mostly granite ashlar or harled rubble, though one exception is the cherry-cocked Public Hall. Larger than Old Deer, Stuartfield is fortunate in retaining a convenience store, a butcher's shop with post office, and a good pub.

The focus of the village is the square, which, in contrast to many of the villages in Buchan, is surrounded with verges with many mature trees. A feature of the square is the bell, erected to commemorate the new millennium, and rung at midnight on Hogmanay to welcome the new year. The inspiration for the bell was derived from the history of village. In the 18th century, a time when few people in Buchan had clocks, a bell was rung three times a day to regulate the business of the village.

Glimpses into the history of the village are provided by a series of picture postcards that depict Stuartfield as it was in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

(The 1st of 6 pages. Revision date: Friday 16th March 2012)


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