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The Invergordon Archive

High Street, Invergordon
The Invergordon Archive
High Street, Invergordon

A postcard dating back to the 1960s, at a guess, showing the High Street, looking East. Lots of Hillman Imps can be seen parked, probably showing the influence of William Munro's garage which had a Rootes Group dealership.
Georges can be seen on the left (with the white sun blinds), now occupied by the launderette and R.S. McColl. Next door but one (with the yellow sun blind) is The Little Shop which sold hosiery. The other shop with the yellow blind is probably Mackenzie Brothers, the butchers.
The tall chimney of the Royal Hotel can clearly be seen.
Picture added on 12 September 2004
Yes, the shop with the most distant yellow blind is Mackenzie Bros Butchers as they were known. My Grandfather (Alex Mackenzie) and his brothers founded this shop. He went on to run it with my father (Jim Mackenzie) for many years..
Added by Norman Mackenzie on 14 March 2005
Think this is prior to 1960s as it looks like the Royal Hotel is still standing; it was destroyed by fire in the 50s.
Added by Harry on 29 April 2005
Harry, the Hillman Imp was introduced in 1963 and I understand that the Hotel burnt down in the late 60s.
Added by Malcolm McKean on 29 April 2005
Sorry Malcolm but it was in the 50s. I left there in 59 and the Royal was down already..
Added by Harry O'Neill on 29 April 2005
I think you've got the date wrong Harry, the Royal hotel burnt down in 1972/73.
Added by Dave Smith on 30 April 2005
Sorry all for confusion, I must be confusing with a previous fire...thanks for your input..I stand corrected.
Added by Harry O'Neill on 30 April 2005
The Royal burnt down end of January 1973.
Added by anon on 03 May 2005
The shoe shop near Nonnies is?

Added by Keith Varnham on 14 August 2005
Wasn't the shoe shop Bill Clark's of Seabank Road?
Added by Jet Andrews (Robb) on 21 September 2005
I recall that there used to be a milk vending machine on the High Street pavement, outside Boyd's Grocery shop - on the right hand edge of this photograph. It dispensed 1/3 pints for about thrupence!
Added by Kenny MacCormack on 26 February 2006
Does anybody know where 93 High Street Appel & Mackay was situated? And does somebody know where members of this family nowadays live? Let me know.
Added by Walter Wagener on 22 February 2007
Walter, if memory serves me right, I think Mr Appel's shop was one of the smaller ones down the left hand side as you look at this picture. It may possibly have been slightly beyond the second yellow sun shade, but I am not too sure. I was quite young when they closed down. As far as I know Gerlinde is married and living in the Nairn area.
Anonymous comment added on 23 February 2007
I remember the night the Royal Hotel burned down very well. I was at a function at the Jackdaw with a group of friends and when we returned to Invergordon the Royal was well alight and being tackled by our local part-time fire crew. Shortly afterwards a couple of full-time units from Inverness arrived and set about tackling the blaze with the added professionalism you would expect from a full-time crew. I remember there being concern that someone was still trapped in the building but for the life of me I can't remember who it was they were worried about. However, the shell of the building was a danger and I found myself down on the High Street a couple of days later with the unpleasant job of demolishing the various parts of the building that presented most danger, which included the chimneys mentioned in another comment above. I was a crane operator with Scottish Plant Hirers at the time and used a 25 tonne Grove telescopic crane with a large piece of pipe hanging from the hook as the demolition "ball." It was really disappointing to see the demise of such an important Invergordon establishment. Does anyone remember this event?
Added by John Fraser on 23 February 2007
93 High Street is the shop next door to, and beyond, the shop with the yellow awning near the centre of the picture.
Before occupying 93 High St., Mr Appel had a small workshop in a lane off the high street behind 107 High Street. These premises were near the white car parked under the yellow sign, just right of centre in the photograph.
Added by Ronald Stewart on 24 February 2007
Walter, I can remember when Appel stayed in Esk Lane just up from Willie O' Hell's workshop..and had, as Ron says, a small workshop just up off the High Street before moving onto the High Street itself.
Added by Duncan Murray on 24 February 2007
Didn't Appel have a wee workshop up the lane from Nonie's? I think it was actually a part of Nonie's back shop. I know my greatuncle "Big Dave" Mackenzie who had the grocer shop (where Somerfield's is now) used to go to have a blether with Appel and then to Nonie where he would have another blether!!!
Added by Rosalie Graham now Samaroo on 02 March 2007
Yes Rosalie, that is the workshop I referred to at rear of 107 High Street. It used to be Nonies, now it's Wilson solicitors office at 107.
Added by Ronald Stewart on 03 March 2007
I remember Appel having a workshop in Esk Lane and then a shop between Jimmy Grant the butchers (now the Chinese Takeaway) and the Grain Store - Jeff Walker was manager, Keith’s dad. Then he was on the High Street between Mackenzie the butchers and Cathie Mcleod’s shop, after Roddy Makenzie the electricians moved over the road to Jamieson’s beside the Commercial Bar.
Added by Liz Adam (Askew) on 07 April 2007
Couple of comments on the photo and the events and people named. My family moved to Invergordon in January 1973 and the Royal Hotel was still open then. From memory it was burned down about a week after we moved there which would make it Jan 19-20 or 26-27 - could the function at the Jackdaw have been a Burns Night - (no pun meant there)! It was definitely a Friday night/Saturday morning and there were fire engines from all over the North; I recall being told that Inverness based units had come up as the local engine (manned by part time firemen) didn't have long enough ladders to deal with the fire and think one guest was injured when he jumped from an upstairs window.
The Appel family lived in Esk Lane; our house (135 High Street) backed onto their garden and they had the middle of 3 houses as I recall. The others were a very old lady and her son (I forget their names but have the feeling they were both retired so she must have been in her late 80s-90s) who lived in the house nearest to Joss Street and at the other side was Tom Watt and his wife, another elderly retired couple. He was very active and took great care of his garden.
From memory, the Appel shop was - in the picture - just about where the gentleman in the dark waistcoat and white shirt is standing; middle of the block, just before the cafe which was there in 1973-onwards.
Added by John Sinclair on 30 November 2007
I remember there used to be a shop where Wilson Solicitors is now, back in the early '70s. It was a hardware/bicycle accessory type shop. I have no idea what it was called, or who owned it.
Added by Kmmc55 on 05 May 2008
Hi Kmmc55, I am sure that was owned by Munros Garage and a woman called Greta worked there and later it was Winnie Campbell from Evanton.
Added by Liz Askew on 09 May 2008
Clark’s shoe shop used to always confuse me as a kid. We used to go there to get kitted out with Clarkes sandals for the summer (everyone wore them!) and I could not work out if Mr Clark actually made the sandals or not. My Grandfather Willie Geddes was a shoemaker and had a shop at the bottom end of King Street. I don’t think he ever tidied his workshop as it was knee deep in discarded bits of leather. It had a nice smell inside but he was always a disappointment to me as he would never repair my leather football when the stitching came undone, despite bribing him with an ounce of "Erinmore" tobacco (his favourite) whenever pocket-money would allow.
When he was in his eighties my Grandfather began to get a bit confused. On one occasion he was walking down the High Street with his jacket on fire. Billy Sutherland drew this to his attention and helped to extinguish the flames...he had put his pipe in his pocket without ensuring it was "dead"!
Added by Bill Geddes on 20 March 2010
I am Gerlinde. My parents had the Appel and Mackay Watchmaker and Jewellers shop in Invergordon.
Added by Gerlinde Shand on 23 February 2017
Hello Gerlinde,
you probably reminder me, its Walter from Bockhorn, now living in Oldenburg - my mother was Johanne Wagener and have know very well our aunt Helene (Leni) Seehausen. Please into contact to me: wwagener@web.de . I was the one who ask about your fathers shop - because i want to know what´s happened to you. Walter
Added by Gerlinde Sand on 23 February 2017
It´s me Walter, i have known that family in the 70th on that place. Please contact wwagener@web.de
Added by Walter Wagener on 23 February 2017
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