Westhill, Aberdeenshire

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Westhill
Entrance to Westhill - geograph.org.uk - 9861.jpg
Entrance to Westhill at the Aberdeen City boundary
Westhill is located in Aberdeen
Westhill
Westhill
Location within Aberdeenshire
Population10,392 [1]
OS grid referenceNJ828070
Council area
Lieutenancy area
CountryScotland
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townWESTHILL
Postcode districtAB32
Dialling code01224 74
PoliceScottish
FireScottish
AmbulanceScottish
EU ParliamentScotland
UK Parliament
Scottish Parliament
List of places
UK
Scotland
57°09′14″N 2°17′02″W / 57.154°N 2.284°W / 57.154; -2.284Coordinates: 57°09′14″N 2°17′02″W / 57.154°N 2.284°W / 57.154; -2.284

Westhill is a town in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, approximately 7 miles west of the city of Aberdeen.

Size of Westhill[edit]

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

Demographics[edit]

The population in 2006 was 10,392,[1]. As of June 2016, the population grew to an estimated 12,040 [2] people, 65.3%[2] being aged from 18-64.

Origin[edit]

The creation of Westhill just outside Aberdeen was the idea of local solicitor Ronald Fraser Dean in 1963.[3] 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]

Swimming Pool, Westhill

Major housing expansions are under way at Elrick and to the west of Westhill.[4][5] Many new housing estates are being built, primarily from companies such as Stewart Milne and Bett Homes.

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.[6] 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.

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.

Education[edit]

Westhill Primary School

Westhill has three primary schools; Crombie Primary,[7] Elrick Primary [8] and Westhill Primary.[9]

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.

Famous Residents[edit]

Second Gold Post Box on Westhill Drive, Westhill

Olympic canoeist Tim Baillie has a gold post box on Westhill Drive in commemoration of his gold medal in the canoe slalom C-2 event in the 2012 Olympics.[10]

In part of the Grampian Regional Council Brotherfield Nursey, is the 2.5 acre home of The Beechgrove Garden, a gardening based television programme broadcast since 1978 on BBC Scotland.[11][12][13] Episodes have broadcast from the site since 1996.[12]

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 by Stagecoach Bluebird. Stagecoach run two daily bus services (X17 and 218).

The X17 connects Elrick Broadshades and Westhill to Aberdeen Union Square via Queens Road. This service operates every 15 minutes Monday to Saturday, and every 30 minutes on Sundays.

Service 218 connects Westhill to Aberdeen Union Square via Kingswells Park and Ride and Aberdeen Royal Infirmary every 3 hours Monday to Saturday, with no service running on Sundays.

Service N17 is the night version of the X17, operating via Queens Road to Aberdeen every hour from 0020 to 0415.

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.[14]

Religion[edit]

Westhill has several active church congregations. Trinity Church is an ecumenical project involving the Church of Scotland, the Scottish Episcopal Church[15] and the Roman Catholic Church. In addition, evangelical services are also held by the Westhill Baptist Church located at the Westdyke Leisure Centre. In 2016, a Buddhist centre established at Kinmundy, Varapunya Meditation Centre offering Buddhist practice and meditation.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Westhill Profile, Aberdeenshire Council
  2. ^ a b [1], City Population
  3. ^ "Westhill's Past". 7 May 2001. Archived from the original on 7 May 2001.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  4. ^ Housing Expansion, Aberdeenshire Council
  5. ^ Development Brief, Aberdeenshire Council
  6. ^ Industrial permission, Aberdeen Council
  7. ^ Crombie Primary, Aberdeenshire Council
  8. ^ Elrick Primary, Aberdeenshire Council
  9. ^ Westhill Primary, Aberdeenshire Council
  10. ^ https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-north-east-orkney-shetland-19109796
  11. ^ English, Paul (2 April 2008). "GROWING PAINS; TV legend Jim McColl takes a swipe at new-fangled shows as Beechgrove Garden celebrates 30 years". The Daily Record. Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  12. ^ a b "Beechgrove Garden digs in to its new plot". The Herald. 12 March 1996. Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  13. ^ "Down to earth evergreens". The Scotsman. 22 March 2003. Retrieved 18 March 2018.
  14. ^ "Bain's Coaches - Service 777 timetable (PDF)" (PDF).
  15. ^ "Westhill Episcopal Church". Archived from the original on 2006-03-26.

External links[edit]