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The Invergordon Archive

Joss Street Family
The Invergordon Archive
Joss Street Family

This is a photo taken of myself and my sisters and brothers on our air raid shelter in Joss Street. My sisters were Moreen, who worked in the Bank in Invergordon and died 2 years ago, and Nesta who lives in Shrewsbury. My brothers: Bill "Pop" and James "Corky" who also is now dead. I'm now living in Portmahomack.

(The date of the photo is a guess - Site Admin.)
Picture added on 03 September 2006
Meg, great pic...I remember "Pop" and Corky, sorry to hear about him. This is a happy picture. I am adding it to my album. Could you please name them in order...Also curious about your air-raid shelter, was it taken down after the war?
Thanks for the pic...
Added by Harry O'Neill on 03 September 2006
Hello Meg, I am in touch with Nesta and hear about you from her. Did you enjoy your holiday in Shrewsbury?
Added by Catherine MacKenzie (nee Clark) on 03 September 2006
Yes Meg, is it possible to say who is who? I think I have a picture which includes the child at bottom left. Must get round to posting some more old shots.
Added by Bill geddes on 10 September 2006
Meg, nice to see this picture. Remember Moreen, Nesta and "Corky". Sorry to hear about him. I think he was in the class above me at school.
Added by Rosalie Graham now Samaroo on 12 September 2006
Just had a look at this picture with a sad smile!My Dad was Corky......a real character till the day he died. His ashes are buried in his father's grave at Roskeen.
Added by Karin Pragnall(nee MacDonald) on 11 November 2006
Sitting back row Moreen Bill. Front Meg, Nesta James I was three when this was taken and remember it well. Also remember the air raid shelter coming down. Our Dad made an open shed with the tin. It had seats down the side and the man who came to mend our pots used to sit out there and tell me stories of his travels. We also had a home-made swing hanging in the middle so we could swing in the rain and not get wet.
Added by Meg MacDonald on 18 November 2006
Just noticed date on photo as 1950. Please can it be amended to 1944. Thank you.

(Thank you for the correction - Site Admin.)
Added by Meg MacDonald on 19 November 2006
Thanks Meg, Corky was a great pal, what a sense of humour he had. I remember all of you, Pop was a real character too. I wonder if he remembers an incident with Lady Anderson?, to do with a tree.....
Added by Harry O'Neill on 19 November 2006
Just browsing through the site when this photo caught my eye! I'm Corky's daughter Nicola. Sadly Pops passed away on the 26th April 2007. Mind you I think I'd like to hear that tale about Lady Anderson, and yes my Dad had the wickedest sense of humour right up to the end.
Added by Nicola MacDonald on 11 May 2007
Just to say to all who may remember Pop, or Billy as we knew him, that he died on 18th April 2007. It was after a very short illness. He had a wonderful send off in the village he made his home in Shropshire.. Meg MacDonald
Added by Meg MacDonald on 12 May 2007
Nicola, I was saddened to hear about Pop and of course your dad Corky. Catherine Mackenzie (Clark) had informed me. I have responded to you via e-mail.
Added by Harry O'Neill on 12 May 2007
Meg, so sorry to hear of your sad loss. I'm sure he was as popular in his village as he was in Invergordon.
Added by Rosalie Graham now Samaroo on 13 May 2007
It's a lovely photo of all of the family as children. I think you can see each individual's character shining through. I'm another of James' children, and the comments are true...what a sense of humour he had! His jokes, stories and anecdotes live on, believe me!
Added by Kirsty MacDonald on 03 January 2009
Just wondered whether anyone recalls Mrs Mina (not sure what this is short for) and Mr Andrew Ross who lived at 53 Joss Street, Invergordon. Checking out family tree on father’s side (William Skinner Macleod) and it’s proving to be difficult. The Ross's were related to my father and of course, I'm going back years!
Added by Deborah Moroney (nee Macleod) on 07 February 2011
I remember Mina and Andrew, they lived on Joss Street upstairs. Mina used to come visit my grandmother in Outram Street; Andrew I believe worked at the dockyard. The last time I saw them would be about 1956.
Added by Harry O'Neill on 07 February 2011
I certainly remember them! Mrs Ross was a big lady who loved children but did not have any of her own. She used to give me sweets and other treats. Her husband worked in the Dockyard and I remember that each evening when he came home from work she would pour him a glass of beer to have with his Tea! I remember thinking how kind that was as my Dad never got that treatment. My memory of her is of a lovely kind woman.
Added by Bill Geddes on 08 February 2011
I'm smiling! Thanks to those who responded. Can anyone provide any details of Mina Ross and her birth family - The Skinners. There were many brothers and sisters, Donald, Christine, Skipper, Dolly, Tom - just to name a few. Mina's Mother Isa (Isobella) Macleod (married for a second time and became Christy) brought up my own Father. Probably a long shot. Any information would be most helpful. Thx everyone.
Added by Deborah Moroney (nee Macleod) on 08 February 2011
Hi Bill Geddes and Harry O'Neill, the story is that Mina Rose was a nutritionist and after meeting Andrew was offered a job in Canada. Andrew loved her so much he waited for her to return which was some time - hence they were perhaps too old to have children of their own. Yes, she was a large lady - I just about remember her, and my Mum (83) like you said she was a very kind lovely lady. Can you advise whether number 53 Joss Street is still standing, couldn't see it on Google! Any idea when they died and where they were buried? Or any other surviving relatives? Sorry for all the questions but this is very exciting for me. Thank you.
Added by Deborah Moroney (nee Macleod) on 09 February 2011
Their house in Joss Street was at the end of the terrace of Council Houses, I think they lived in the upstairs flat. I have a distinct memory that, even as a child, I recognised that this was a couple who were rather different from all the other couples I knew. It's only now that I realise what it was..they loved each other deeply and were not afraid to let it show. Very un-Scottish at that time.
Added by Bill Geddes on 10 February 2011
Hi Deborah, sorry but cannot furnish you any info on them. I believe the house is still there, it was a council house and they lived upstairs. Andrew was a very quiet man. Good luck.
Added by Harry O'Neill on 10 February 2011
I knew Mina very well as she used to visit my Gran, Mrs Mackenzie, in Clyde Street frequently. If I remember she did a lot of work for the Labour party and was even recognised by the leaders of the party at that time for her work. As I was only a child at the time I wasn't intersted in politics but I do remember that part of her life. She was a very kind lady and Andrew seemed to me to be a bit shy.
Added by Rosalie Samaroo (Graham) on 10 February 2011
I think this would have been the Andrew Ross sometimes referred to as Andrew the Waterman, because his work at the dockyard involved supplying fresh water to ships berthed at Invergordon.
Added by Ronald Stewart on 14 February 2011
The Flats in Joss Street numbers 25-70 (ish) were demolished a few years ago because they had been built on contaminated land. The flats I refer to were fairly modern so may have been built where the old council houses used to be that you are talking about, but feel free to correct me! If you check Google Maps, it's the large open area in the middle of Joss Street. I believe they are about to start building again on this plot as the land contamination has been cleared.
Added by JillianB on 16 February 2011
Flats are gone, but the council houses are still there to the right of the large open area.
Added by Harry O'Neill on 16 February 2011
Thanks everyone for taking the time to pass on all the information you know regarding Joss Street. It's been real interesting. Kind regards Deborah Moroney
Added by Deborah Moroney (nee Macleod) on 16 February 2011
The flats were built where the Prefabs were as well as the old TA buildings and there was no mention of contaminated ground in those days I can assure you we were kept well in the dark by somebody!
Added by Duncan Murray on 17 February 2011
I was at the building of the Maisonettes from start to finish. No contamination then?
Anonymous comment added on 19 February 2011
Dear anonymous comment..I lived in the Prefabs from 1947 untill 1966 so pray tell if there was no contamination when you were building the "Flats" Where did it come from .If it was not supposedly there all along.
Added by Duncan Murray on 19 February 2011
Did they not say that it was because the gas works used to be there?
Anonymous comment added on 20 February 2011
I should like to rephrase my comment 'there was no obvious sign of contamanation in the foundations of the maisonettes' I am sure that J. Woodburn and F. Jackson would have spotted anything suspicious at that time.
Anonymous comment added on 20 February 2011
You can read up on the reporting on the council's website www.highland.gov.uk/NR/rdonlyres/551E7B40-E884-4747-8B74-FB15543D4D73/0/record_of_determination_of_contaminated_land_joss_street_invergordonpdf.pdf
Anonymous comment added on 20 February 2011
The contamination was Benzene and was accredited to the old gas works having been on the site in the early 1900s.
Added by JillianB on 07 March 2011
I lived in Joss Street during the war, my father was stationed in the RAF there in the docks. We were living with the Darling family.
Hope this is correct info. - have you any record of the family? I think part lived in Hartlepool, not sure. Think Annie died in 1996.
I think a daughter worked in the Bakers on the High Street about 70ish.
Added by Dennis Peers Darlington on 29 September 2012
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Saltburn Fund-raising GroupMacGregors supermarketFay Mackenzie and Angus MackenzieReading about the planned closure of the SmelterMy mother at the Royal HotelGrandad Geordie Ross and StyloGeordie Ross and meDon RossGeordie MacKenzie Kathleen MacKenzie and Don Ross