In putting this website together I’ve had many challenges that resulted in a range of emotions; frustration, elation, disbelief, surprise, satisfaction, confusion, appreciation and relief to name but a few. I started off knowing a little about most things I’ve written about but there wasn’t really enough there to make Portlethen sound like an interesting place; however by the time I was nearing the end of this journey I realised that we’ve had quite a colourful and chequered past. If at least a handful of people learn something new about Portlethen and have enjoyed the stories, photographs and illustrations then this journey has been worthwhile.
Finally, I’ve came to a section that has perhaps been the easiest one for me to put together – my own family history. Before I continue I must confess that I’m not a genealogist and I have never studied my lineage or pedigree further back than my own grandparents and I have no intention of doing so here. Anyway, because I do have some information from my own family “archives” I can incorporate some of this into the story of Portlethen so you can see where and how we fit into the overall picture.
Initially I’m going to briefly cover two families here – an introduction to the Thomson’s (my mother’s family) who did not come from Portlethen but are worth mentioning because my mother Anne has became a “local lass” over the years and has kept a unique record of the development of Portlethen since her arrival here. The other family I’ll mention is from my father’s side – the Kenn family who have lived in and around Portlethen for many, many generations. (Through the Kenn’s I’ll also be touching on the Spence family too)
As well as a touch of genealogy, I’ll cover some personal anecdotes and stories that my family have been involved in that link to Portlethen. Where I’m lacking a story I may have a photograph instead.
Of course there might be many people who are intrigued about Portlethen but will have no interest at all in “the guy that put this website together or his family history”. For those people – don’t beat a hasty retreat just yet, you might discover an elusive photograph or a story that means more to you than all the other stuff that I’ve put together.
Finally, the two sections entitled “Restless Natives” and “Rights and Wrongs” consists of a mix of family history and controversy whereby my family were embroiled in a land ownership issue in the late 1980’s. I felt it was right to record this as a part of local as well as family history, and additionally, a good indicator of the minefield and complexities of local land ownership. I have omitted using any names in these sections, other than my own family, and no offence is intended to any person who may or may not have been involved in this controversy.