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Scottish Gaelic: A' Mhanachainn[1]
Scots: Beauly,[2] Beuly[3]
Beauly is located in Inverness area
 Beauly shown within the Inverness area
Population 1,365 [4] (2011 census)
est. 1,130[5] (2006)
OS grid reference NH525465
Council area Highland
Lieutenancy area Inverness
Country Scotland
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Beauly
Postcode district IV4
Dialling code 01463
Police Scottish
Fire Scottish
Ambulance Scottish
EU Parliament Scotland
UK Parliament Ross, Skye and Lochaber
Scottish Parliament Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch
List of places

Coordinates: 57°29′05″N 4°27′43″W / 57.484662°N 4.462035°W / 57.484662; -4.462035

Beauly (/ˈbjuːl/ BEW-lee; from French beau lieu, meaning "beautiful place"; Scottish Gaelic: A' Mhanachainn) is a town in the Kilmorack Parish of the Scottish County of Inverness, on the River Beauly, 10 miles west of Inverness by the Far North railway line. The town is now within the Highland council area.

The land around Beauly is fertile - historically corn was grown extensively [6] and more recently fruit has successfully been farmed.[7] The town historically traded in coal, timber, lime, grain and fish.[8]


Early years[edit]

Beauly is the site of the Beauly Priory, or the Priory Church of the Blessed Virgin and John the Baptist, founded in 1230 by John Byset of the Aird, for Valliscaulian monks. Following the Reformation, the buildings (except for the church, which is now a ruin) passed into the possession of Lord Lovat.

Beauly is also the site of Lovat Castle, which once belonged to the Bissets, but was presented by James VI, to Hugh Fraser, 5th Lord Lovat and later demolished.[8]

The population of Beauly was 855 in 1901.[8]

Recent history[edit]

In 1994 Simon Fraser, 15th Lord Lovat sold Beaufort castle to Ann Gloag (director of the Stagecoach Group) to pay off debts.[9]

In 2002, the Beauly railway station, built in 1862 and closed in 1960, was renovated and reopened.

In January 2010, the Scottish government approved controversial plans for a power line upgrade that will begin in Beauly and end in Denny, Falkirk.[10] The new power line, part of a plan to carry electricity generated by wind farms on the Western Isles, was called "the most significant grid infrastructure project in a generation" by Jim Mather MSP.[10] The 220-kilometre (140 mi) line will consist of a network of 600 pylons, ranging in height from 42 to 65 metres (138 to 213 ft).[10] The first part of the transmission circuit (Beauly to Fort Augustus) was switched on in July 2013.[11]

The population of Beauly was 1,126 in 1991, 1,283 in 2001 and 1,365 in 2011 [12]

Arms of the Community Council


Beauly is in the Aird and Loch Ness Ward of the Highland Council [13] which has four seats which are currently (April 2015) held by two Independent councillors, one Scottish National Party councillor and one Scottish Liberal Democrat councillor.[14]


The extensive ruins of the abbey church of Beauly Priory with funerary monuments (notably including those of the Mackenzie family) are managed by Historic Scotland.[15]

The town is known for the Beauly Shinty Club, its shinty team, who have won the Camanachd Cup three times and have been World Champions once.

To the south-east of Beauly is the church of Kirkhill, Highland containing the vault of the Lovats as well as a number of septs of the Mackenzies, including Seaforth and Mackenzies of Gairloch.

Three miles south of Beauly is Beaufort Castle, the chief seat of the Lovats, a modern mansion in the Scottish baronial style. It occupies the site of a fortress erected in the time of Alexander II, which was besieged in 1303 by Edward I. This was replaced by several castles in succession. One of these, Castle Dounie, was attacked and burned by the forces of Oliver Cromwell in 1650 and razed again by the royal army of Prince William, Duke of Cumberland in 1746 during the Jacobite Rising. Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat witnessed this latter conflagration of his castle from a neighbouring hill (he then fled and took refuge in the Highlands before his capture on Loch Morar).[8]

Notable Residents[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ainmean-Àite na h-Alba ~ Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland
  2. ^ Eagle, Andy. "The Online Scots Dictionary". Scots Online. Retrieved 4 July 2016. 
  3. ^ List of railway station names in English, Scots and Gaelic - NewsNetScotland
  4. ^ "Comparative Population Profile: Beauly Locality". Scotland's Census Results Online. 2013-08-16. Retrieved 19 April 2015. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "A plan of that part of the annexed estate of Lovat lying in the parish of Kilmorack" (PDF). National Archive of Scotland. Retrieved 18 April 2015. 
  7. ^ "Struan Lodge - Beauly". Retrieved 18 April 2015. 
  8. ^ a b c d  One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Beauly". Encyclopædia Britannica 3 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. 
  9. ^ Ross, David (29 August 1995). "Bus company chief buys Lovat castle". Herald Scotland. Retrieved 18 April 2015. 
  10. ^ a b c Power line upgrade given go-ahead, a 6 January 2010 article from BBC News
  11. ^ "First section of Beauly to Denny power line switched on". BBC. 25 July 2013. Retrieved 18 April 2015. 
  12. ^ "Population of Beauly". Retrieved 19 April 2015. 
  13. ^ "Aird and Loch Ness Ward". Retrieved 19 April 2015. 
  14. ^ "Ward 13 Local Councillors". Retrieved 19 April 2015. 
  15. ^ "The Abbey Church of Beauty Priory". Historic Scotland. Retrieved 2015-04-19. 
  16. ^

External links[edit]