Westhill, Aberdeenshire

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This article is about the place near Aberdeen. For Westhill near Inverness, see Culloden, Scotland.
Westhill
Westhill is located in Aberdeen
Westhill
Westhill
 Westhill shown within Aberdeenshire
Population 10,392 [1]
OS grid reference NJ828070
Council area Aberdeenshire
Lieutenancy area Aberdeenshire
Country Scotland
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town WESTHILL
Postcode district AB32
Dialling code 01224
Police Scottish
Fire Scottish
Ambulance Scottish
EU Parliament Scotland
UK Parliament West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine
Scottish Parliament Aberdeenshire West
List of places
UK
Scotland

Coordinates: 57°09′14″N 2°17′02″W / 57.154°N 2.284°W / 57.154; -2.284

Westhill is a town located in the Scottish county of Aberdeenshire, approximately 7.5 miles due west of the city of Aberdeen.

Origin[edit]

The creation of Westhill just outside of Aberdeen was the idea of local solicitor Ronald Fraser Dean in 1963.[2] With the backing of the former Aberdeen District Council (see Aberdeen City Council), the Secretary of State for Scotland and supported financially by Ashdale Land and Property Company Ltd., the new settlement of Westhill was created upon the old farming land. Since construction of the first houses in 1968, Westhill has undergone a gradual expansion, much of which is tied to the North East's oil and gas economy. In 2007/8 a major expansion of the industrial estate brought several thousand workers to the area. Most of these are in specialist sub-sea engineering oil service companies, making Westhill a world centre in sub-sea engineering.

The name Westhill was created in 1859 when John Anderson from Strichen bought the adjoining small estates of Wester Kinmundy and Blackhills. Both of these names were very old, dating back to at least the 16th Century, but Anderson seems not to have liked them. He therefore created the name Westhill from the other two names. This is recorded in the Register of Sasines December 2, 1859.

Wester Kinmundy and Blackhills were established either side of a geographical area known as 'The Clash', this was a marshy bog, historically listed as being sited between Brodiach/Borrow(ed)stone area and (Now Kirkton of)Skene. It is commonly thought the remnants of this area is still apparent but nowadays named Denman Park.

Growth of the town[edit]

Housing[edit]

Major housing expansions are under way at Elrick and to the west of Westhill.[3][4] Many new housing estates are being built, primarily from companies such as Stewart Milne and Bett.

Industrial[edit]

Westhill Business Park is also growing, with an increasing number of companies creating offices in the park. Due to the demand for offices, many planning permission applications for using the unused land to the South-West have been submitted.[5] The growth has been such that the Postal Area formerly known as Skene has been renamed Westhill, so that for postal purposes, the once two-horse-hamlet of Westhill now covers many square miles.

Controversy[edit]

During the 1980s the local authority boundaries were to be moved such that Westhill would fall within the City of Aberdeen. This was seen as a cost-cutting venture, however the community set up a "Don't Move Westhill" campaign, and successfully stopped the town's absorption into Aberdeen. No new attempt to move the boundaries to include Westhill have been made since.

Amenities[edit]

Retail[edit]

Westhill has developed a large range of retail outlets. Westhill contains a small Shopping Centre, which contains a wide range of shops. Many supermarkets have opened in Westhill, including Tesco, Costco, Aldi, The Cooperative and Marks and Spencer. There are also rumours that there are plans to build an ASDA in Westhill. There are two fuelling stations in Westhill, one owned by Tesco and one serviced by BP.

Food[edit]

Westhill hosts a wide range of food outlets and restaurants. The Holiday Inn provides two themed restaurants, namely an Italian (Luigi's) and a Lounge. There is also a Premier Inn in Westhill and situated next to it is The Shepherd's Rest, which serves pub-style food. The Broadstraik Inn is a traditional pub which also serves meals, and there is a cafe, called Circles, situated at the Westhill Shopping Centre. Yan is a Chinese/Thai restaurant located very close to the Police Station, in a small retail outlet, and Amaya, an Indian restaurant, is located near to Aldi.

Westhill also contains many takeaways, including Subway, two Chinese takeaways, one Indian takeaway, an Italian Delicatessen, a Turkish takeaway and the Lows Chip shop.

Hospitality[edit]

Westhill contains two main hotels; the Holiday Inn (Aberdeen West) and the Premier Inn. Westhill contains 2 B&B's located on the Old Skene Road, and Kilnhall Guest House.

Sport[edit]

Westhill caters for a wide variety of sporting activities. Westhill Golf Course provides 18 holes throughout the golfing calendar; Lawsondale Playing Fields provide pitches for Football, Rugby, Hockey matches amongst other sport; Two Tennis courts; An outdoor Bowls Centre. The Ashdale Hall provides sporting opportunities for all age groups. A swimming pool is located just beside the Academy and provides tuition in swimming for all ages, sessions for family and serious swimming and a party service for birthdays.

Youth[edit]

Westhill contains many youth orientated groups, which include: the Scout hut on Old Skene Road; the Boy's Brigade (held every week in Westhill Academy), the Air Training Corps squadron on Brodiach Road; Script, Screen to Stage (established approximately 2005), an acting and filming group that normally takes place at Westdyke Leisure Centre; And Youth clubs and other activities at the community centre, situated within the Academy.

Westhill also contains Lawsondale Playing Fields, and every Saturday of the school calendar many school football matches are played there. The Ashdale Hall is used for indoor sporting events such as Bowling and many types of martial arts. Westhill Golf Course also caters for the youthful population; Every Monday evening is usually set aside specifically for under 16's to book times.

Emergency Services[edit]

Westhill is served by Grampian Police. Westhill contains a small Police Station, owned by Grampian Police.

The Headquarters of the Aberdeen Mountain Rescue [6] are located just behind the BP service station.

Westhill also contains the Skene Medical Practice,[7] run by the NHS.

Education[edit]

Westhill has three primary schools; Crombie Primary,[8] Elrick Primary [9] and Westhill Primary.[10]

Westhill also has a secondary school, Westhill Academy. The academy services Westhill, Skene and pupils in the surrounding area. It was opened in 1979, and since then many improvements and extensions have been made to increase the capacity of the Academy. Currently the number of pupils is roughly 1000, however this figure is expected to rise. In 2010 the school came 27th in the league tables for all independent schools in Scotland.

All the schools in Westhill are run by Aberdeenshire Council

Transport[edit]

Road[edit]

The A944 runs straight through Westhill, and this connects Westhill with Kingswells and Aberdeen to the east, and as far as Mossat to the west. The B9119 branches off from the A944 just before Westhill and this route continues on towards Echt, eventually connecting to the A93.

Bus[edit]

Westhill is served primarily by Stagecoach buses. Stagecoach run 3 services daily and a night-bird service every Friday night. The X17 route connects Westhill to Aberdeen only. The 18 and X18 routes, which run less periodically, connect Westhill to Aberdeen and also to Skene and Dunecht to the west. Every morning and afternoon Stagecoach operate an 18 service exclusively for Westhill Academy, which stops in Kingswells, as a minority of pupils reside in Kingswells. There is currently no bus station in Westhill but there are frequent roadside stops.

There is a much less frequent service provided by Bains Coaches which passes through Westhill. The route 777 connects Oldmeldrum to Westhill and through to Aberdeen, however this service only passes through Westhill 3 times Monday to Friday.[11]

Religion[edit]

Westhill has several active church congregations. Trinity Church is an ecumenical project involving the Church of Scotland, the Scottish Episcopal Church[12] and the Roman Catholic Church. In addition, evangelical services are also held by the Westhill Baptist Church located at the Westdyke Leisure Centre.

Size of Westhill[edit]

The town of Westhill covers the area that was the Western Kinmundy and Blackhills Farming areas.

Demographics[edit]

  • Population (2006) = 10,392[1]
  • Population forecast (2011) = 11,274[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Westhill Profile, Aberdeenshire Council
  2. ^ Brief History
  3. ^ Housing Expansion, Aberdeenshire Council
  4. ^ Development Brief, Aberdeenshire Council
  5. ^ Industrial permission, Aberdeen Council
  6. ^ Mountain Rescue
  7. ^ Skene Medical Practice
  8. ^ Crombie Primary, Aberdeenshire Council
  9. ^ Elrick Primary, Aberdeenshire Council
  10. ^ Westhill Primary, Aberdeenshire Council
  11. ^ "Bain's Coaches - Service 777 timetable (PDF)". 
  12. ^ Westhill Episcopal Church

External links[edit]