07572 582198
"Welcome to Hidden Aberdeen Tours, Aberdeen's Premier Walking Tour Company" Uncovering the lost, forgotten, hidden and always bringing the past to life 

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We are not accepting bookings for private tours until March next year.  We also do not offer tours to schools.

 WE ARE BACK! Our Winter Series of Indoor events starts in February:



A selection of tall tales, half-truths and actual whacky happenings from Aberdeen's history and folklore.  Did you know that Harry Houdini, world famous escapologist came to Aberdeen in 1908 and carried out a crazy stunt in the Dee?  Was William Wallace's arm buried in Old Aberdeen or Torry?  

Did Hitler really plan to use Marischal College if the Nazis had invaded Scotland?  And did a woman and her son kill the Laird of Northfield centuries ago?These and many more urban legends of the city will be presented in the cosy surroundings of our new favourite venue, The Cult of Coffee - owners Paul and Louise say they will have loads of new cakes to tempt you, so do join us for this storytelling event.  

  • VENUE: The Cult of Coffee, Esslemont Avenue, Aberdeen (map link)
  • DOORS OPEN: 7pm
  • STARTS: 7.30PM
  • TICKETS: £10.00 each all tickets; Book online via Ticketsource (click HERE


Do you hate Valentine's Day? Hearts and flowers make you hurl? Here is Hidden Aberdeen's antidote to the singletons' nightmares - a selection of stories about real and fictional ladies associated with the city who caused a stir including:

  • Maggie Creek - the brothel keeper in Justice Street who was witness to the murder of John Sampson, the Black Drummer in 1809...
  • Catherine Humphrey - 1830 poisoner of her butcher husband, James and thus the last woman in Aberdeen to be hanged...
  • Caroline Phillips - journalist and suffragette, whose activities irked her boss at the Aberdeen Journal, and whose independence lead to a falling out with Emeline Pankhurst... 
  • and some we know less about including Mrs Christian Milne, wife of executioner Johnny Milne, who was fined and imprisoned for braking the windows of her old home after her husband's death in 1831, and the mysterious "Forty Piggies", a swine-keeper who inspired a poem, but not much else.

With musical accompaniment from sound artist, Haworth Hodgkinson, and possibly, some live drama with a twist, this show promises to be an enlightening twist on this sickly sweet season.

In our newest venue, Spin Aberdeen, the only record shop in Aberdeen with a pub attached, we can promise a well-stocked bar, and some gin promotions for all you lovers of the botanical spirits! More details to come on this!  (Wheelchair accessible)

  • VENUE: Spin Aberdeen, 10 Littlejohn Street, AB10 1FG (Map Link)
  • DOORS OPEN: 7pm
  • STARTS: 7.30PM
  • TICKETS: £10.00 Adults/ £8 Concessions; Book online via Ticketsource (click HERE

more dates will be added very soon!!


Our walking tours have finished for the year, but be assured, we have lots of indoor talks and storytelling sessions planned for the winter months.  Just keep an eye on this page, or visit our Facebook - www.facebook.com/HiddenAbdnTours.  Our big end-of-season indoor theatre/storytelling event is shaping up for November, we'll post more details once they have been confirmed.  Look out for another chance to buy copies of the Hidden Aberdeen City & Shire series at an event in early December. 

All enquiries info@hiddenaberdeentours.co.uk 

Current Projects

As well as tours and storytelling sessions, Hidden Aberdeen is also works with various local businesses, charities and third sector organisations:

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Reminiscence Sessions

Working with Alzheimer Scotland in Aberdeen

Director, Dr Fiona-Jane Brown is currently working with Dementia Advisor, Sarah Geoghegan and the volunteers at Alzheimer Scotland's Dementia Resource Centre in King Street, Aberdeen to deliver reminiscence sessions to their clients.

Reminiscence and storytelling has been shown by experts to be beneficial to people suffering from dementia conditions. In early discussions with the charity, there was a real interest in using the content from the history walks to present sessions to regulars at the centre.

The sessions themselves take the form of an initial presentation using images, music and oral recordings on various local history themes including shops, cinemas, war-time and festivals, followed by time for discussion and sharing of memories. The centre in King Street, which was originally the Chivas Brothers' grocery store, can accommodate groups of 40 in comfortable seating; there are tea/coffee making facilities and clients can enjoy some "fine pieces" with their drinks.

The first session, on "Lost Shops" of Aberdeen, was very-well attended with an audience of around 24 people, many of whom worked in some of the locally-owned stores in the city's retail areas such as George and Union Streets. There was great enjoyment of the photographs of weel-kent emporia such as Falconers, Watt & Grant, Isaac Benzies and Norco House, and many shared memories of shop features such as money-chutes and glass-fronted display cabinets. Particularly popular was the film from Scottish Screen entitled "Out For Value" which was made in the 1930s for Isaac Benzies, an iconic store in George Street. Facebook likers were even able to identify the house where the family in the film lived as being situated on Anderson Drive after it was shared on our page.

The sessions are being funded by CALA Homes, local housing developer, which regularly support Alzheimer Scotland in their endeavours. Their fundraising team will be attending the June session on "Lost Cinemas of Aberdeen" to see for themselves how clients are really enjoying these trips down memory lane.

We are delighted to be working with these local organisations and contributing to what is essentially helpful therapy for people struggling with dementia and its related conditions.


Our Publications

Dr Fiona-Jane Brown, director of Hidden Aberdeen Tours has published three books on local history in the city and shire.  

Original Hidden Abdn Cover



Publishers, Black & White of Edinburgh have finally been able to bring back this very popular original local history book which was inspired by the walking tours and Dr Fiona-Jane Brown's blog which was hosted by STV Aberdeen way back in 2012! Due back in bookshops by mid-June 2017!

Aberdeen is rich in history, much of it hidden. Now, in Hidden Aberdeen, Dr Fiona-Jane Brown explores the city through new eyes, revealing new stories from the past and bringing the modern city to life. There's the last resting place of Robert Hitchens, who was at the wheel of the Titanic when it struck an iceberg; Royal connections including the Old Pretender, James Francis Edward Stuart's visit to local ship owner, Skipper Scott, when he discovered from his commander, the Earl of Mar, that all was not well with the Jacobite Army; the brutal murder of a monk by so-called reformers and the strange nineteenth-century animal cruelty case against the city's Jewish community. There's also the city's intriguing connection with Millwall FC and the place where medieval criminals were hanged. This fascinating book will open your eyes to the hidden, the forgotten and the abandoned which lie under your feet as you walk round the city today.

Hidden Aberdeen: History on your Doorstep and Under Your Feet is the first local history publication from Dr Fiona-Jane Brown, founder of Hidden Aberdeen Tours.

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Hidden Aberdeenshire the Coast

Following on from the bestselling Hidden Aberdeen, Fiona-Jane Brown now presents a brand new volume, Hidden Aberdeenshire: The Coast, exploring the rich history and the most fascinating, quirky stories from the windswept lands beside the North Sea.

There's the story of James Keith, brother of the 10th Earl or Marischal, whose statue stands in Peterhead - but few know why; Captain Gray's House, where Sir Arthur Conan Doyle took up a post as ship's surgeon on a whaler owned by one of the most successful whaling captains of the nineteenth century; the tale of the Frasers, the family who lost their castle and generations later reclaimed it; the mystery of the university that never was; plus many more.

Hidden Aberdeenshire: The Coast is a fascinating and entertaining collection of forgotten history and anecdotes from Scotland's North-East, pieced together by historian Dr Fiona-Jane Brown.

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Hidden Aberdeenshire the Land

Following on from Hidden Aberdeenshire: The Coast, this new volume moves inland to tell the stories of the countryside, from the fertile farmland of Buchan to the high peaks of the Cairngorm Mountains.

Visit Macbeth's reputed grave at Lumphanan, where he was supposedly buried by his supporters after being killed by Malcolm Canmore, later Malcolm III of Scotland; meet the Maiden Stone's forgotten companion, the larger-than-life Persephone sculpture, near the foot of Bennachie and learn the significance of the Kintore Arms Public House to a terrible murder back in 1863.

Come and visit the two most fascinating burials in Braemar cemetery, of poor crofter, Peter Grant who fought at Culloden and outlived Bonnie Prince Charlie, and the Black Colonel, John Farquharson of lnverey, who made his "bed" in the rocks above his castle, but did not lie peaceful in his grave after death.

Learn about Trooper Smart of Kintore who died in South Africa as a result of a lion attack; the hidden stone circle discovered in Methlick Wood by a local dowser and Wormy Hillock, an early site of Pagan worship near Rhynie.

Join historian and guide Dr Fiona-Jane Brown for these and many more quirky, forgotten and hidden tales, this time from Aberdeenshire's landward districts.

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Hidden Aberdeen Tours (founded 2011) is wholly owned by Dr Fiona-Jane Brown as a sole-trading operation which occasionally works with contractors.

Contact Hidden Aberdeen

Business Postbox

21 York Place

AB11 5DH 

Phone: 07572 582198
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