Lecture series back by popular demand

A free lecture series celebrating the lives of Granite City greats is to return for a third series after attracting audiences keen to hear about the lives of our ancestors.

Dr Kirsteen Mackenzie, from the University of Aberdeen’s School of History, said the success of the first two series organised by The Research Institute of Irish and Scottish Studies and Aberdeen City Council, has inspired a new run which got underway last Wednesday.

The series begun with Dr MacKenzie, who talked on the life of Alexander Jaffray, who was Provost for the City of Aberdeen in the mid seventeenth century.

Jaffray was an early leader of the Society of Friends (Quakers) and served in parliament under Oliver Cromwell.

Dr MacKenzie said: “Jaffray was the author of an important diary, and was a central figure in Aberdeen’s experience of the British civil wars.

“He helps us to understand Aberdeen’s religious and political history as well as the city’s own development so is a great candidate to get the third series of Great Aberdonians underway.”

The series, held monthly in the St Nicholas Room, Town House, Union Street, Aberdeen, will continue on April 2 with Isabella Skea (1845-1914), the Lass o’ Pairts followed by Charles “Priest” Gordon (1772-1855), parish priest and controversialist on May 7.

It will conclude with a talk on June 3 about Colonel William Sykes (1857-72), a soldier, scientist, East India Company Chairman and MP for Aberdeen.

Dr MacKenzie added: “I am delighted that it has returned again and am pleased to be involved in the series. The talks this year are as interesting and wide ranging as ever.”