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"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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HORRIBLE HISTORIES WEEK - 

A BLOODCURDLING COLLECTION OF OUR CREEPIEST STORIES!

 

CASTLEGATE: THE BLACK KALENDAR
MONDAY 23 JULY 2018

First of a series of 4 walks on the creepiest, most disturbing and terrifying aspects of Aberdeen's history.  Learn of the horrors which occurred around Aberdeen's old medieval marketplace beginning at Old Blackfriars, once a merchant's house where the dastardly folk involved in child slavery hid their kidnap victims, and including many tales from Aberdeen's Black Kalendar, the city's list of court proceedings over several centuries. More details here.

MEET: Lower Bar, Old Blackfriars Pub, 52 Castle Street (MAP)
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: approx 2hr
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


GHOSTS & GHOULS OF THE AULTOUN
TUESDAY 24 JULY 2018

2nd of our series of walks revealing Aberdeen's dark side!  Come to the medieval university campus and hear the stories of the ghosts of auld lang syne.  There's Sacrist Downie, the unfortunate victim of a student prank gone badly wrong. Hear the supernatural situation of Mrs Baird and Dr Reid, the minister's wife and the spiritualist who tackle a creepy entity in the Chaplainary near St Machar's.  Also includes the Hermit of Powis; the Ghost of the King St Barracks and the mysterious Mason's Mark.  More details here

MEET: Outside Kings College, entry path, High Street, Old Aberdeen (MAP)
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: approx 2hr
TICKETS: Click HERE  to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


TRAGIC & TERRIBLE TALES OF TORRY
THURSDAY 26 JULY 2018

3rd of our walks investigating the dark side of the city's history. Beginning in Abbey Place, outside the Old Torry Community Centre, we tell tragic and terrifying stories from this ancient fishing community, including: The Dee Ferry Disaster (1876); The Wreck of the Oscar (1813); The Unsolved Murder of Betty Hadden (1945); The Mysterious Death of Robert Davidson Jnr (1829); The sad tale of brave Covenanter, William Milne of Kincorth who defended his cause to the death, in far away Yeovil at the Battle of Langport (1645).  A revival of the old Torry Ghost Tour from years back!

MEET: Outside Old Torry Community Centre, 2 Abbey Place, Torry (MAP)  
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: approx 2hr 
ENDS: Old St Fittick's Kirk
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


BLOOD & GRANITE: THE MURDER HISTORY TOUR
FRIDAY 27 JULY 2018

The original and the best crime history tour in Aberdeen.  The ONLY tour with research from the late lamented Grampian Police Museum! Final of our 4 walks delving into Aberdeen's dark side.  See the sites and hear the stories from our city's dark and criminal past. War and bloodshed, murder and mayhem, it's all under your feet!! Taking you back in time to some of the city's most notorious slayings, the Murder History Tour brings out the horrors behind the doors of some of our most innocuous tenements and monuments. More details here

MEET: Trinity Cemetery, Park Road Gates nr Pittodrie (MAP)  
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: approx 2hr 
ENDS: Justice Port Flats, Park St.
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


UNION STREET: ABERDEEN'S MODERN HEART 
MONDAY 30 JULY 2018

Union Street represented the break with and indeed the destruction of the medieval city as it cut through the old, crowded streets and lead the way to a new development at the far side of the Denburn Valley which had once been the border of the burgh. This tour aims to show a little of what was there before, including a look at the vaults, the piers which hold up our main street, as well as explaining the fight the business community had to persuade the council to go ahead with this new development.  More details here.

MEET: Outside Aberdeen Town House, Union St entrance (MAP)  
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: approx 1hr 
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


ABERDEEN'S MEDIEVAL & PREHISTORIC ORIGINS
TUESDAY 31 JULY 2018

Starting at Shiprow, once thought to be the city's oldest street when it was called "The Way of the Ash Tree" in 1212AD, then skirting the remains of St Katherine's Hill, now the Adelphi through to the Green where the Trinitarian and Carmelite Friars had their monasteries. We then follow the trail through the Denburn Valley, now Union Terrace Gardens, to the site of the city's mineral spring of repute, the Spa Well,and end at Hill Street, Gilcomston to the earliest sites of local settlement stretching back to Neolithic and Mesolithic times (6-10,000 years ago).  More details here.

MEET: Outside Aberdeen Maritime Museum, Shiprow (MAP)
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: Approx 2hr
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow 


OLD TORRY'S LOST VILLAGES (MINI TOUR)
WEDNESDAY 1 AUGUST 2018

Following on from the talk "A Tale of Two Torrys", the mini tour takes you on a journey of 800 years in just one hour! From the ancient kirk of St Fittick's dedicated to Torry's mysterious patron saint and the brave Covenanter, William Milne, who is buired in the kirkyard, to the story of how old fisher Torry was demolished TWICE, due to harbour development and the coming of the oil industry, with just 100 years between.  More details here.  N.B. AFTERNOON TOUR

MEET: Junction of Sinclair Road/ Baxter Street (Outside former Torry Bar) (MAP)
STARTS: 1pm
DURATION: approx 1hr
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


CASTLEGATE'S HISTORIC PAST: MINI TOUR 
THURSDAY 2 AUGUST 2018

A whirlwind tour of Castlegate's Georgian, Victorian and medieval past including the Mercat Cross, Peacock's Court, the Salvation Army Citadel and the tale of Aberdeen's vanished castle.  Begins Old Blackfriars pub where you can get 25% off your food order by presenting your ticket.  Pop in for either a late or early lunch! More details here

MEET: Old Blackfriars, 52 Castlegate (MAP)
STARTS: 1pm
DURATION: Approx 1hr
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


OLD ABERDEEN: HISTORICAL SECRETS (MINI TOUR)
FRIDAY 3 AUGUST 2018

A zip through Old Aberdeen's history comparing the 20th century and medieval quadrangles, hearing the stories of Elphinstone Hall, New Kings and 16th century Kings College; visit the hidden remains of the 15th century Snow Kirk and the tales attached to the post-Reformation Powis estate represented today by the impressive gates which replicated the former towers in the old quad.  More details here

MEET: Outside Elphinstone Hall, Regent Walk, Old Aberdeen (MAP)  
STARTS: 2pm
DURATION: approx 1hr 
TICKETS: Click HERE to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


GALLOWGATE GALA - HISTORICAL TALK
WEDNESDAY 8 AUGUST 2018

As part of the local gala held at St Margaret's Episcopal Church, Hidden Aberdeen Tours' director, Dr Fiona-Jane Brown will be giving a talk on the history of the Gallowgate, partly to highlight the launch of the new tour "Aberdeen's Borderlands: The North - Gallowgate" on Thursday 9th.  Including Gallowgate's earliest origins as the first site of civic execution, the development of industry and the changing face of the street through time.  Free talk, donations to the church suggested.  Followed by tea/coffee in the church hall.

VENUE: St Margaret's Episcopal Church, Gallowgate (MAP)
STARTS: 1pm
DURATION: approx 1hr
FREE EVENT


THE GALLOWGATE: ABERDEEN'S BORDERLANDS - THE NORTH (NEW TOUR!)
THURSDAY 9 AUGUST 2018

A brand new tour, first in a series of four, covering "Aberdeen's Borderlands".  The Gallowgate represented the way to the city's Northern border, Mounthooly, as Aberdon was a separate burgh until 1891.  From its earliest origins as the first site of civic executions to the home of the city's earliest thread mill, Porthill, the Gallowgate has changed rapidly through time.  An industrial area from earliest medieval times with the home of the Tannery near Broadgate, and later Soapy Ogston's; site of the Quakers' burying ground, often dug up by an less than supportive council; the home of "Mar's Castle", a curious building latterly used for the medical students to hold their earliest meetings of the Medico-Chirurgical Society; and the site of the famous Middle School, the first to have a swimming pool in the city.  Gallowgate hides many secrets, we will attempt to reveal some on this tour.

MEET: Outside NESCol, Gallowgate (MAP)
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: approx 2hrs

TICKETS: Click HERE to book online or at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


ROSEMOUNT RAMBLE
TUESDAY 14 AUGUST 2018

Our new favourite, taking you around the streets of Rosemount and revealing its past as Gilcomston, home of weavers and craftsmen, and the site of the earliest medieval mills when the landlords, the Menzies of Pitfodels had the best grain and lint mills outside the city.  Featuring the hidden gems of Mackie Place and Rosemount House.  More details here.

MEET: Outside the Cult of Coffee, 28 Esslemont Avenue, Aberdeen (MAP)
STARTS: 7.30pm
DURATION: approx 2hr
TICKETS: Click HERE  to book or, in person at Visit Scotland's iCentre, Shiprow


More dates will be added very soon!

Please note, if dates are not shown it means there are no tours planned yet for those dates or they are free for private bookings.  

News

VisitAberdeenshire Logo 4 2Our newly updated listing with VISIT ABERDEENSHIRE is now live.  Our friends at this local tourism promotion agency have been snowed under with updates to their business pages, so if you've recently visited it and found obsolete information, it's now been fixed! Click HERE to view and let us know if you spot any errors in future! 

NESS logoCompany  Director, Dr Fiona-Jane Brown will be working with North East Sensory Services, an Aberdeen charity providing support for both deaf and blind people in Grampian.  She is recording her local history books for NESS' audio library; the latter has a large collection of audio books including fiction and non-fiction, but they were a bit short on local authors.  Following fellow Aberdeen author, Duncan Harley's recording from his bookThe A-Z of Curious Aberdeenshire, Dr Brown offered to contribute Hidden Aberdeen: History on Your Doorstep and Under Your Feet, and the two Hidden Aberdeenshire volumes.  She hopes to record some folk tales and Doric pieces for use on NESS' monthly audio newsletter Bon-a-talk.  Membership of the library involves an annual fee, but borrowing is free.  Contact NESS for further details of their services

**UPDATE** Hidden Aberdeen, the first book has now been recorded, Hidden Aberdeenshire: the Coast is next to come!

AS imageAnnouncing two further reminiscence sessions at Alzheimer Scotland's Aberdeen resource centre in July and August.  Last year, Dr Fiona-Jane Brown, company director was involved with this excellent charity delivering talks on local history and kicking off memories with the visitors to the King St resource centre, with topics including The Blitz, Lost Cinemas, Lost Shops, Transport and Hospitals.  The funding kindly donated by CALA Homes, one of AS's local supporters, ensures that the last two scheduled sessions will be delivered this summer.  Anyone is welcome to the free sessions on 25 July and 22 August starting at 2pm.  After the talk and chat there's time for tea and more chat.  The topics this time are sure to be popular "Dancehalls & Ballrooms" and "A Virtual Pub Crawl of Aberdeen".  These will be released as a joint public talk later in the year. For directions to AS's Dementia Resource Centre, please check out their web site here.

Current Projects

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

Partner Discounts!

Jen and her team at Old Blackfriars are pleased to announce the first of a few different discount offers from Hidden Aberdeen customers.  On presentation of your ticket, you can get £5 off your food order, or for £4.50 you can try that infamous North-East delicacy invented by the Carron Chipper, Stonehaven, the DEEP FRIED MARS BAR with a pint.  We will also being doing some storytelling events at this atmospheric pub which was once famous as The Royal Oak from the late 1890s!

Old Blackfriars Sign





Our lovely friends at Inn at the Park would like to offer Hidden Aberdeen customers a special 25% discount off all food orders when they present their tour tickets - that's your printed ticket, or online version (phone, tablet etc).  

iatp advert1

 

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

 

BACK IN PRINT AFTER AN 18 MONTH ABSENCE!! 

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.

amazonblack < Click to purchase from Amazon


 

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.

amazonblack < Click to purchase from Amazon


 

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.

amazonblack < Click to purchase from Amazon


 

 

 

 

Impressum

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

Footdee
Aberdeen 
AB11 5DH 

Phone: 07572 582198
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