David Wilkies tribute to Jill McWilliam, jist a fairmin’ quine.

“You are a great advocate for your native Buchan and for showing folks the wild rugged and remarkable scenery of mountain, land, coast and sea which has inspired you to provide inspiration for others”.

Les Cantlay, York.

Doric language – let’s keep it guan

Jill Cantlay McWillam is a lover of the Doric Language, she lives in Cruden Bay on the beautiful North East coast of Scotland. Above all. Cruden Bay is well known for its World Class Golf course, and Gothic cliff top ruin which inspired Bram Stoker to write Dracula.

However, obvious tourist attractions aside, Cruden Bay is nestled in the heart of Doric country with a rich farming and seafaring heritage with generations of local families treasuring their Doric roots and ancient Doric Language.

From farming stock who spoke the Doric language

Jill has been collecting and archiving video footage for over 30 years and through the wide range of services now available. That is to say, it has never been easier for her share her work, and now many more people can enjoy and explore the remarkable footage she has captured over the years.

Jill feel’s it’s really important to capture as much of this information as she can relating to the Doric Language before it’s too late and gone for ever. And moreover, Jill sees it is her goal to preserve the past and inform the future.

Working with local communities

Over the years Jill has spent a lot of time working with local communities and sees great value in linking with every generation to help grow awareness in our local heritage and proud culture. The Doric language is unique to the North East of Scotland, and consequently suffers from being a niche within a niche which puts it in real danger of extinction as each successive generation passes.

Since launching the Doric Future website in October 2019

we have been delighted with the many personal contributions written especially for the site, as well as the video features which were filmed at Jill’s Doric Studio in Cruden Bay.

It has also become clear that our appeal is broadening out across wider Scottish cultures with interest coming from the most unlikely of sources, check out the extracts below from our YouTube channel, I think you’ll see what we mean.

It’s with this growing interest in mind we will be delighted to include submissions from a broad variety of cultural perspectives from all across Scotland, which we hope in time will create interesting content to be enjoyed by one and all. We also hope this will inspire others to make their own contributions and will in time tie these distinct cultural threads together here in this unique website.

Jill hope’s you enjoy your visit to her site and that you take away something you didn’t know before.

Pictured above is farmer Jimmy Cantlay,

Jimmy is the father of Doric Future founder Jill Cantlay McWillam. It was Jimmy’s pride of his Doric roots which egnited the same passion in Jill, and the rich legacy of his experience and love for the land he worked for over 60 years inspired her to capture and share the stories he had to tell, and the stories of others like him. In doing so, Jill is realising her ambition of preserving the past and informing the future.

Picture: Caroline Purday

I had the privilege of interviewing  Dame Evelyn Glennie for Doric TV recently in the coming weeks when it will be feature in our Doric TV section, so watch out for this one, it’s a belter! Coming from the same farming background in Aberdeenshire as myself , I was delighted to hear her thoughts on our precious Doric dialect and culture.

Evelyn has written the following for Doric Future.


As the world becomes ever more generic, indigenous and minority languages, dialects and cultures struggle to survive. Language is built on not only what is spoken but what is unspoken; the richness of the social structure, climate, landscape, industry and many other aspects form the words we speak and more importantly how they are communicated. As a Doric speaker myself and a native of the North-East I feel privileged and unique; it is an important life line to my homeland and to all those who live in the North-East. It is also a fascination to the many people I meet during my global travels. Education at primary school level is key to the survival, understanding and continued interest in Doric and Doric culture. I feel honoured to have had this richness in my early education through speaking, reading, writing and  poetry reciting, all of which seamlessly transferred to the family environment. Even having lived in England for over half my life, there is not a day that goes by whereby I’m not speaking Doric at some point – even if jist tae mesel!

Dame Evelyn Glennie, Scottish virtuoso multi-percussionist

Doric Matters! 

This is why Doric matters. It has as much right to thrive in the global soup of language as any other. Because it has evolved over centuries to reflect a way of life rooted in the soil, washed by the sea and shaped by ordinary folk. It has been altered by battles, invaders, traders, new friends and old traditions. It is in itself an old tradition portrayed through bothy ballads and through the ordinary lunes and quines that keep speaking it.  

Angus McCurrach MSc. (Psych.) BSc. (Psych) Dip.(Soc.Sc.) Cert.(Couns.) MBpS

Director, Buchan Counselling

Sign up to Join the Doric TV 

If you have already singned up to bepart of the Doric TV community, that’s great news, but please take time to send details of this great new service from Doric Future, to anyone you think might be interested.

Doric TV is all about introducing ordinary people who do extraordinary things. We even have clebrities like Dame Evelyn Glennie give us an interview, but we think that you’ll agree when you see the forth coming episode featuring her, she is indeed a very ordinary person who has done the most extraordinary thing with her talents and her life.

We want to share Doric TV with as many people as possible, and encourage sharing and feedback across our community, so if you haven’t already done so, please sign up and join us today and remember to send this link to your contacts at home and across the world to help us grow and share our wonderful Doric culture.

Introducing Doric TV

It’s quite sad that when I was younger, speaking Doric was possibly a sign that one didn’t have a great command of the English Language!

I really feel proud of my Doric dialect now, having lost so many words and phrases, will endeavour to rekindle those meaningful words, before they are lost altogether.

In the summer of 2020 I decided it would be fun to launch my Doric TV Channel which would primarily feature local people who do amazing things. Artists, crafts workers and musician showcase their talents on Doric TV.

Join the Doric TV Community today

We very much hope you will join our Doric TV Community by clicking on the link below, could you please share a link to this page with anyone else you think may be interested in being part of our community.

Doric Future videos

Jill’s Lockdown diaries picked up by STV

Jill’s lockdown videos collection cover so much of what’s best about accessing the ‘great out doors’ of Scotland. Jill not only promotes the joy of walking through the wide open areas on her own door step, but also highlights the rich heritage, diverse natural landscape and preservation of the doric culture, as well as the benefit to mental health and well being.

Peterhead Prison Officer Jackie Stuart

Doric Future is gathering folk from all backgrounds and professions.
Like any changing culture there is one profound thing that will remain after the written or spoken word has gone, it’s values.
There is a great back bone to Doric Folk, their sheer determination to survive in extreme circumstances.
Peterhead Prison Officer Jackie Stuart now well into his retirement stands firm with his couthy personality and warm presence retelling his story of courage in the face of adversity.

Ian Kennedy from Peterhead.

Ian Kennedy from Peterhead has a great love and enthusiasm  of our Buchan Heritage.

Jill explains her ‘Doric’ project.

Lot’s of people have shown an interest in Jills work and have been asking how they might find out more, well who better to tell them than Jill herself?

Cruden Bay – The little village with a big history.

It’s 20 years since I made my first video of Cruden Bay.  I’m delighted to have had the opportunity to present my work to a higher standard.  It takes a huge effort to make these community videos.  I guess my imagination started from my farming days, from the hours and days of menial work , my mind would wonder and begin to create stories in my head

2019 was the year Doric Future began,

snippets of that year where I am out and about sharing our culture and experiencing other people’s cultures

Buchan, Land and Sea

Jill’s latest piece reflecting on her passion for all things Doric  and  pulled together all in a day – Farming , Fishing, Stone circles, Country Houses, Wildlife, cycling on the Railway Line, Nostalgia and so much more to be proud of..

Doric future, isn’t just about our Language and Culture.

Here in the North East of Scotland. I want to add something for everyone so it makes it interesting and ever changing.

For me it’s about sharing our culture with other folk across Scotland. This video clearly shows how I easily engage with people from different cultures across our Bonnie Land . This interview with Chaz gave me a wonderful insight into motor bikers, their community, their sense of brotherhood and how that has such a positive knock on affect to the wider community with the charity work they do.   Scottish folk never cease to amaze me !

See comments on this video

Betty Morris shares her Doric stories.

Local woman Betty Morris shares her own very personal memories of a life steep in a rich Doric family life. 

A Tribute to the Farming Community

Jimmy Mathers, Farmer – Slains, Aberdeenshire

A wonderfully rich account of a Doric farmers life, Jimmy Mathers spent his entire working life on his farm at Slains near Cruden Bay.

aJimmy Cantley – 60 years rearing and selling gimmers

Jimmy Cantlay, Farmer – Slains, Aberdeenshire

A very personal reflection by Jill Cantlay McWillam of her fathers life and work as he celebrated 60 years of service to the farming community.

Antonia was our first feature blog and is now our first featured video interview.

Antonia Uri –

“in just one day 500 people watched  Antonia’s interview.”    “ I shall interview Antonia again in the “future “ to see if her dreams have come to be”……..

Alan Hay reflects on the history of the Hay family.

Alan Hay, Archivist of The Clan Hay Society and Chairman of The Royal Celtic Society

As an early contribution to our ‘Historians of Cruden Bay’ project we are delighted to share the reflections of Alan Hay.

See comments about this video

A Tribute To The Collieston Fishermen.

Doric roots are strongly formed from fishing and farming communities.  The late Norman Moncrieff beautifully describes this way of life.  Norman’s grandfather was the last Commercial Fisherman in Collieston, Aberdeenshire.

The last of the Salmon Fishermen.

Bertie Bruce, Joseph Yule and Malcolm Forbes were the last commercial fishermen to fish from the Forvie and Cruden Bay Salmon Stations.

In the year  1831 a system called bag netting was developed to catch salmon in the north east waters,  which became one of the oldest fishing methods in Scotland .  John Bruce, Bertie’s father bought The Cruden Salmon Fishing rights in 1927, thus continuing a way of fishing till   2016,  when the salmon fishing stocks became depleted. It was a sad day when these fishermen had to hang up their nets for the last time. They were the last of the Salmon Netsmen. It was a privilege for me to watch them over the years at work.

Doric Fishing Roots.

A way of life which sustained small communities in the N.E. of Scotland.  Various fishermen who laterly worked from Port Erroll, Cruden Bay and Whinnyfold, Aberdeenshire.

The Doric Farming Community.

Farm Roup at The Ward , Slains, Aberdeenshire

This is the last farm Roup that myself and my father attended. It is important that we keep a record of not just a farming industry but also the way of life that went with it.

Bessie Cordiner Wilkins.

The importance of videoing oral history to document not only how the Doric language is spoken, but also on how we look.

Bessie Cordiner Wilkins (No. 2).

Bessie to me, is the “Queen of Doric” that’s why I would like her profile up with the others at the beginning of the site. “At reaching nearly 100 she has spent hours with me, recollecting back  as far as her grandfathers time, she is to be commended as she has to concentrate hard to remember all the details.

Marc MacIntosh, Peterhead.

Senior auctioneer, Aberdeen and Northern Marts.

Marc McIntosh has been an auctioneer selling cattle and sheep etc all his working days.

This video gives an insight to the role of an auctioneer.   Marc has experienced a life time’s connection with countless of North East Farmers and their families.

Jill McWilliam.

On The Stone Circles Of Buchan,Scotland.

The Doric Words will go, but it’s the impression that’s left by the people before us that will live on and fascinate us.

Cruden Bay Folk Club

Featuring the Folk Club’s female voice choir

I have had a long time attachment to the Cruden Bay Folk Club which was formed in 2012, and before that with many of the local entertainers who came together to form the club.

In this video ‘One Voice’ the femaile voice choir which I also take part in (can you pick me out of the line up?) perform the Parting Glass, a song of parting and the anticipated loss of being seperated from those you care for.

For a play list of songs from the club and it’s associated performers and groups, check out the Doric Future ‘Music’ Page

Jill's YouTube Channel

If you're looking for more Doric influenced info, as well as some general travelogue content, why not drop into my You Tube Channel, with over 80 videos in my current collection, there's plenty there to keep you busy.

Just click the big red button