Huntly is a small market town approximately 40 miles North-West of Aberdeen in the North-East of Scotland. The town lies close to the Aberdeen to Inverness trunk road, has a station on the Aberdeen to Inverness railway line and is about an hour from the international airports of both cities. The current population of the town of Huntly is 5,000 and that of its district is 10,000. Below you will find a general introduction to our town. For more information, including on community groups and their latest news and events, please go to the community website: http://www.huntly.net/.
Huntly is an agricultural market town and is the centre for the wider farming area with a regularly-used mart. The entire town centre, including the attractive central market Square, is a conservation area and contains 62 listed buildings. A short walk from The Square is Huntly Castle. Huntly was the historic capital of ancient Strathbogie, and its castle was the seat of the Gordon Family. The Gordons raised the Gordon Highlanders, now merged into the Royal Regiment of Scotland. Besides agriculture, other important local industries have been textiles, brewing, engineering and a flourishing retail sector.
Nowadays, Huntly has a significant industrial estate. Major employers are Deans (shortbread manufacturers), Rizza’s (ice cream), R&M Engineering and Pipeline Technique. The public sector is also a major employer in Huntly, with Aberdeenshire Council the National Health Service and Forestry Commission Scotland all having a strong presence.
In 2006, two supermarkets opened on the edge of town presenting a significant challenge to businesses in the town centre. As a response, local farmers established a popular monthly farmers and producers market in the town Square on the first Saturday of every month. Local retailers developed the Huntly Rewards loyalty card scheme.
Huntly is home to a number of community groups with interests ranging from contemporary arts to traditional fiddling, and from rugby to bridge. CricketScotland has chosen Huntly as the venue for its North of Scotland Cricket Academy. Huntly Nordic and Outdoor Centre continues to produce representatives for the Great Britain Cross Country Junior Development Squad, several of whom are contenders for places in future Winter Olympics. Local shooter Sheena Sharp was a double Gold Medal Winner at the Commonwealth Games in 2006.
Huntly is also very proud of the seemingly endless stream of talented individuals in the traditional Scottish performing arts. The town produces World Highland Dance Champions and has thriving Dance Schools that have sent performers as far afield as China. If you are lucky you may see the Huntly & District Pipe Band (established in 1948) who perform by invitation at many Scottish Highland Games and abroad. Shona Donaldson is a top traditional Scottish singer from Huntly who has toured internationally. Both she and her husband, champion Scottish fiddle player and composer Paul Anderson, have separately completed ‘artist-in-residence’ projects in the town commissioned by contemporary local arts group Deveron Arts. Shona and Paul both have CDs of their music available locally.
More info: www.huntly.net