Hide

Olrig

hide
Hide

"OLRICK, a parish in the county of Caithness, Scotland. It comprises the village of Castletown. It extends in length about 6 miles from N. to S., with an extreme breadth of 3½ miles. It is bounded on the N. by Dunnet Bay, and on the other sides by the parishes of Dunnet, Bower, and Thurso. The surface is generally level, but rises towards the S., where it becomes hilly, affording excellent sheep-walks. The soil of the arable lands lying towards the sea is rich and fertile. Oats are extensively cultivated. The principal hills are Durran and Olrick. From the latter there is a fine prospect, with traces of a watchtower on its summit. The parish contains the loch of Durran, which is nearly 3 miles in circumference. Along the coast, which is rugged and shelving, though not bold, are some sandy links. To the E. is Castle Hill Bay, where is a commodious harbour, and near it another bay called Murkle, which might easily be made an excellent harbour at no great expense. The village of Olrick is about 16 miles N.W. of Wick, and 3½ S.E. of Thurso. It is situated on Dunnet Bay. A portion of the inhabitants are engaged in the sandstone, limestone, slate, and flagstone quarries, with which this district abounds, and others in the fisheries. There was formerly a nunnery at Murkle, connected with St. Columba's church. This parish is in the presbytery of Caithness, and synod of Sutherland and Caithness. The minister has a stipend of £218. The parish church was erected in 1841. There are also a Free church, parochial school and library, and other schools. The principal mansions are Murkle (a seat of the late Earl of Caithness), Ratter, Olrick, and Castle Hill, this last so called from an old castle, of which scarcely a vestige is discernible. Picts' houses occur in various parts of the parish."

Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)

Hide
topup

Churches

Presbyterian / Unitarian
Olrig, Church of Scotland
topup

Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Olrig which are provided by:

topup

Gazetteers

Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, Samuel Lewis - 1851

OLRICK, or Olrir, a parish, in the county of Caithness, 5 miles (E. by S.) from Thurso; containing, with the village of Castletown, 1584 inhabitants, of whom 1107 are in the rural districts. This place, which is of remote antiquity, seems to have derived its name, signifying the " son of Erick", from one of the Norwegian chieftains, who is supposed to have made himself master of it during the general invasion of Caithness by the King of Norway, about the commencement of the ninth century. There are not any events of historical importance. It appears that an inconsiderable descent of the Danes took place here at a distant period, on which occasion the force landed at the bay of Murkle, but was totally defeated by the inhabitants in a sanguinary conflict on a height called, from the slain, Morthill, of which the present name of the bay is supposed to be a corruption. The PARISH is bounded on the north by the bays of Dunnet, Murkle, and Castlehiil, and is about five miles in length and three miles in average breadth; comprising an area of 10,000 acres, of which nearly 6000 are arable, and the remainder meadow and pasture, with about 500 acres of links and moss, and twenty acres of plantations. Its surface is diversified with hills of moderate elevation, interspersed with pleasing and fertile valleys; and most of the hills and high grounds are clothed with verdure, affording pasturage for sheep and cattle. Olrick hill commands from its summit an extensive view of the coast and the adjacent country: the view embraces the bays of Sandside, Scrabster, Dunnet, Freswick, and Reiss, the heights of Canisbay and Nosshead, and several of the islands of Orkney, with the mountains of Sutherland, Moray, Banffshire, and Aberdeenshire; forming together one of the finest and most comprehensive prospects in the north of Scotland.

topup

Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Olrig has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.

topup

Maps

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference ND200663 (Lat/Lon: 58.577104, -3.378221), Olrig which are provided by: