Rogart Heritage

Archaeology & Heritage



WE’RE really sorry to have to do this at the last moment but we have had to CANCEL tonight’s event due to the bad weather.

If you have friends or neighbours who might have been coming tonight, please can you let them know.

We will rearrange the event for later in the year.



Heritage Event – Wednesday 28 February – Pittentrail Hall

We are very pleased to have Eric Patterson come and give a talk on Wednesday 28 February at 7:30pm.

River Brora – From Sea to Source

Eric has created a fascinating collection of pictures and will be our guide along the river as it travels from its mouth at Brora harbour. He will cover the meandering flood plain and up to its source on higher ground. It will be of interest to anyone who knows the river already and to those who have yet to enjoy its scenery and history.

The talk will be followed by a raffle and tea. If you would like to bring an instrument we’ll also have a tune or two.


New ARCH Newsletter

A new Archaeology for Communities in the Highlands (ARCH) newsletter has just come out for January 2018 with details of Experimental Archaeology workshops, the ARCH lecture series for 2018, WWI on the Black Isle and project updates.

  • The next Experimental Archaeology workshop will be James Dilley from University of Southampton doing a session on flint knapping on Saturday 20th January. He comes highly recommended! There will be talks and demonstrations 10-12 and 1:30-3:30, with limited places for hands-on knapping for over 14s at 12-1 and 3:30-4:30 (sign up on the day for the practical). The workshop takes place at Inverness Library near the bus station, and like the others is drop in, family friendly and free!

The calendar of events is starting to fill up on the ARCH website as well.

Click here for the full 4-page Newsletter: ARCH Newsletter 40 – January 2018



New for 2018!

We have been very busy over the last couple of weeks.

Our web pages has been updated to bring you more online resources. So, welcome to our newly updated website – we’ve added loads more!

  • Over 30 new pages
  • Pictures from The White Heather Trials, which were loved by our Facebook fans
  • An index to gravestones, thanks to Chris Stokes
  • More fiddle and accordion music from our library
  • Fabulous new images
  • Great old stories about the characters and places that make Rogart so special

Check it out now!


Christmas Greetings from The Heritage

Wishing you best wishes for Christmas, Hogmanay and 2018!

Thank you for all your support and contributions during the last year. The Facebook page and website will be taking a break from 23 December until 2 January 2018. We will reply to any messages early in the new year.

from the team at Rogart Heritage Society


Rhilochan Craic – 17 November 2017

It was a dreich Friday evening and Joe Beedles had nicely warmed up the heritage centre at Rhilochan School to welcome the crowd. With Charlotte Gibson on refreshments and Alex Campbell (Eiden) organising the raffle, we were in good hands.

It was great to see some new faces – and plenty of our usual stalwarts – who had come out, despite the foul night, to celebrate our musical heritage. After a short meeting to elect the revised committee the musical feast began.

Heather McRae, who had travelled from Portmahomack with Lachie Campbell (Bonar), and the two Greens from Lairg – Frank and Fran – provided the backbone to the evening playing accordions, fiddle and whistle. After tea, delicious traybakes and the raffle the music restarted with Bruce from Rosemount adding percussion on his cajon box drum whilst Ruwan (Ascoile) strummed his ukulele and Chris (West Pittentrail) joined in with his harmonica.

Heather, Lachie, Fran and Frank

We heard many classics from the fiddle and box repertoire including John MacDonald’s ‘Rhilochan School’, along with some Irish airs on the whistle. As a tribute to the Penny and Robin’s flitting to the Orkneys Frank and Fran had rehearsed a delightful tune from Westray. Apologies for the lack of detail about exactly what was on the musical menu, I was too busy enjoying myself to remember to take notes.

Thank you to everyone who was able to join us, specially the wonderful musicians.

Charlotte reading a message from John MacDonald


Committee Update – 17 November 2017

Penny & Robin Calvert, Reidchalmai

Penny & Robin Calvert

Last night, after 25 years in Rogart, we said farewell to Penny and Robin who have been so much part of The Heritage. The couple were presented with small tokens of our esteem and they were wished every happiness and success in their new adventure on Sanday. They are leaving Reidchalmai and moving to Orkney in December to enjoy their retirement where they will manage a smaller property with 36 acres.

Charlotte Gibson, West Kinnauld

Charlotte Gibson

A new Chairlady was elected as a result of Penny’s resignation and the role will be in the capable hands of Charlotte Gibson​ who has served as the Society’s Secretary for 9 years in the past. Stressing that she sees this as an interim measure until the next AGM in April, Charlotte would like to encourage new and existing members to become actively involved in ensuring the future of the group. Charlotte says “We need people with energy, time and enthusiasm to promote and preserve the area’s heritage.”

John MacDonald, Little Rogart

John MacDonald

Local stalwart John MacDonald, who could not be present but sent a message of support and farewell to Penny & Robin, was elected as Vice Chair, vacating his previous position as Secretary. John is widely known as a major local historian who has documented a vast wealth of knowledge about the Parish and is the “go-to” person for family historians, academics and professional researchers. John has published numerous books based on oral histories, published and unpublished documents, which he has gathered over many years, and he has been a leading light in The Heritage since its inception.

Christina Perera, Ascoile

Christina Perera

Christina Perera (nee Sutherland), from Ascoile, has been working behind the scenes running the Society’s website and Facebook page for the last six months. She is editing John’s next book for publication and made a successful bid for a grant from SSE to fund its printing. Christina was elected Secretary in John’s place and stated “John will be a very hard act to follow and I will very much rely on his guidance and support. I am passionate about keeping the group’s unique character whilst ensuring it is equipped to meet future challenges.”

***** If you think you have something to offer to Rogart Heritage Society please get in touch. Come along and find out what we do.*****


Could you be our new Chairperson?

As Penny, our Chairlady, is leaving Rogart for a new life in the far far north we are looking for someone who is willing to take her place.

  • The post isn’t too onerous as we only have one (very informal) formal meeting each year.
  • We also host 3 or 4 events annually which are a combination of historical talk and music night. You’ll need to be confident and outgoing to introduce and close these events.
  • Once a year we host an open day at Rhilochan School and participate in the Archaeology for Communities Highland (ARCH) summer events. The Chairperson is the figurehead for these occasions.
  • The Chairperson may be interviewed by the local press.
  • A small committee provides practical and moral support to the Chairperson – there is a Vice Chair, Treasurer and Secretary. Our historian also provides a wealth of information on the area.

If you are interested please come along to the meeting at Rhilochan School on Friday 17 November at 7.30 pm.


Penny & Robin and pastures new

As fans of BBC’s This Farming Life will already know two of its (human) stars, Penny and Robin Calvert are leaving their croft at Reidchalmai, Rogart and heading on a new adventure. The multi-talented couple have been stalwarts of Rogart Heritage for many years and their departure will leave a big gap.

In recent years Penny has been repeatedly voted in as our Chairlady and so we need to hold a meeting to find a new person who is willing to stand for that position. The new Chair will be ably supported by a Secretary, Treasurer and Vice Chair.

If you’re interested in becoming part of ‘The Heritage’ – even if you’re not sure if you are yet ready to stand for office – please come along to a short meeting on Friday 17 November at 7.30pm at Rhilochan School. The evening will then continue with traditional music from our friends across East Sutherland.

We are sure that many in the community will sorely miss Penny and Robin but we wish them the very best in the exciting new adventure ahead of them. 

Photo: Daniel Taylor


Musical Night coming soon

Friday 17 November a 7.30pm

Come and join us for an evening of music at Rhilochan School