Scottish Saltire - St. Andrew's Cross Scotland from the Roadside... a journey round Scotland!

Northern Scotland
South Aberdeenshire
Dunnottar Castle
Mid Aberdeenshire
Huntly Castle
North Aberdeenshire
Banff & Macduff


Banff & Macduff

View of Banff
(See the galleries for more photos of  Aberdeenshire!)

Banff is a town in north Aberdeenshire that sits on Banff Bay, at the point where the River Deveron enters the Moray Firth; Banff sits on the western side of the Deveron, facing the neighbouring town of Macduff on the eastern side of the river and bay. While these two towns are not directly connected other than by Banff Bridge over the Deveron, it is inevitable that being so close their histories would be. Banff Bridge itself was built in 1779 to replace an earlier bridge that was washed away in 1768; in 1881 the bridge was widened.

Banff developed as a sea port in the 12th century despite not having a harbour until the 18th. The town became a royal burgh in 1372 although there were royal connections dating back to the 12th century; Malcolm IV was recorded as staying there in 1163. The inner harbour at Banff was built in 1775 and the outer pier was added by Thomas Telford in 1816. Banff was an active port until the end of the 19th century, but by then the harbour was being affected by silting; as a result, Macduff became the principal port in the area.

Macduff was originally known as Doune and became a burgh of barony in 1528; however early attempts to develop the town as a seaport failed. In 1783, James Duff, the 2nd Earl of Fife, built a harbour there and also changed the name of the town; with the problem of silting at the harbour in neighbouring Banff, a new Custom House was built in Macduff in 1884 and the port here replaced the one in Banff.

Duff House, to the southeast of Banff, was designed by William Adam and built in 1735 for William Duff; however, due to a disagreement with the architect, Duff never lived there and it is said he never once even looked at the completed building. Duff became the 1st Earl of Fife in 1759 and following his death in 1763 was buried in the family mausoleum at Duff House; in 1906, Alexander Duff, the 1st Duke of Fife and great great grandson of the 1st Earl, gifted Duff House to the town councils of Banff and Macduff.

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