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Scots Language Centre Centre for the Scots Leid

Keith's called time

19th March 2013

There are towns and villages in Scotland where the Scots language names have been Anglicised or changed altogether, but what if your town had no names to begin with? Or rather, many streets without names. Until this month this had been the case at the town of Keith, in Banffshire. When the street grid was laid out over a hundred years ago, most of the lanes running off the main streets were never given names. Recently, however, emergency services in the area pushed for these lanes to be named because trying to identify houses had become a problem. Locals in Keith got together and suggested names for more than 50 lanes, including a number of names in the Scots language. These include Ploo Lane, Fairmers Lane, Sodgers Lane and others. There do not appear, though, to be any gaits, loans or wynds. Nonetheless, it just shows what can be achieved for local culture and identity when councils work in partnership with residents.