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Monday, June 22, 2009

Aberdeen: City of Granite

Aberdeen is one of Scotland's most northerly industrial cities. It has always been a noteworthy sea port involved in fishing and commerce. During the 1970's it took on a new role, however, namely as a base for servicing the oil rigs and drilling platforms that were flourishing in the North Sea (the oil itself is mostly piped into Shetland but Aberdeen has the resources for the heavy construction and resupply for the industry).

The city was built almost entirely out of stone from regional granite quarries which gives the city a rather grey, even austere, character. Here are some images I was able to capture during my transit through Aberdeen.

The high street

Despite its sometimes rather austere impact, Aberdeen has some fine architecture

The City Hall

St. Nicholas Kirk

Granite, granite everywhere...

In recent dacades Aberdeen has become the industrial centre for the construction and resupply of oil rigs and drilling platforms in the North Sea, and the harbour is crammed with service ships.

Many ships have purely functional and unromantic names like this Supply Express...

...though this one pays homage to the Norse God Odin

For me, Aberdeen has always been quite literally, a port, a gateway; the gateway to the Northern Isles as the ship I am on departs from Aberdeen harbour.

Farewell to the British Mainland...

Watch this space!


Blogger Angel... said...

Its amazing Maalie, thanks for sharing such an amazing photographs..I really enjoyed seeing it. Wonderful post

7:47 pm  
Blogger simon said...

it matches the colour of the sky and sea... I KNOW where you are going and I am Jealous!!! I should be there...

12:19 am  
Blogger Ted M. Gossard said...

As always quite interesting pics, Maalie, and interesting thoughts to go with them. Aberdeen as a city of granite, I never knew that. It does have a certain distinctive beauty about it, certainly a distinctive look.

Yes, Scotland does hold a certain fascination for me, but so does all of the British Isles.

I imagine you don't have the heat and humidity we have here right now. Supposed to get to 89F tomorrow, 90F (32 C) the next day and humid that day (already humid!).

6:03 am  
Blogger Kiwi Nomad 2008 said...

I have a cousin who lives with his wife quite a few kilometres north of Aberdeen. Last year their second child arrived somewhat more quickly than expected. They didn't quite get to Aberdeen. Baby was born on the roadside en route, in the kind of coolish temperatures that might be expected in that northern clime! (All is well now!)
Your photos are beautiful. I think I will have to go exploring in that part of the world one day!

6:15 am  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

Aberdeen looks wonderful.
Don't mess with Odin.

10:49 pm  
Blogger Tortoiseshell said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:19 pm  
Blogger Tortoiseshell said...

My own first thought of Aberdeen is as a powerhouse of European football during the early 1980s...

11:21 pm  

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