Highlands & Islands

Prince Charles to open historic Caithness cottages

Restoration work on one of the cottages
Image caption Organisations set up by Prince Charles led the restoration work

Prince Charles will officially open two restored historic cottages in Caithness next week.

The properties in Castletown were used by quarry workers from the 1890s until the 1950s.

With only two rooms, they were called Backies because the rear of the homes face on to a lane.

The properties have been renamed as the Caithness Flagstone Cottages ahead of Prince Charles' official visit on Monday.

Image caption The cottages were home to Caithness flagstone quarry workers until the 1950s

The Prince's Regeneration Trust restored the cottages as part of the North Highlands Initiative.

Staff from both organisations will use the properties for meetings and, when not in use, they will be let for holidays to generate income to maintain the property.

Castletown Heritage Society led local community aspects of the restoration.

The society's drystone dyking course rebuilt sections of the original stone walls around the property, and a traditional skills workshop helped to furnish the Backies.

Prince Charles set up the North Highland Initiative to help promote the far north of Scotland.

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