Caledonia Road, Ayr (c) rightmove.co.uk
One of the local Ayr hotels has changed its name from the ‘Carrick Lodge’ [only a mile or two out of Carrick and really in Kyle] to the ‘Fox and Willow’. I’m sure many readers will have noticed similar Anglicisations [or are they bourgeoisifications?] in their local areas. I seem to remember reading that the burghers of Falkirk added the ‘l’ sometime way back to make it sound more English and ‘proper’. It makes no sense as the original Faw Kirk means ‘speckled Kirk’.
‘Dr Oto-Peralías, of the School of Management at the University of St Andrews, compared the street names of Scottish Westminster parliamentary constituencies with a recent population census asking people to identify their national identity. In areas with a lower number of such union-themed street names, people were more likely to describe themselves as having a ‘Scottish identity only’. People living in Scottish areas with street names commemorating Britain, such as ‘Queen’, ‘Royal’, ‘Regent’ or ‘London’ are less likely to define themselves as Scottish only, new research from the University of St Andrews has revealed.’
The study published in the Journal of Economic Geography also found that people living in areas with a high proportion of streets referring to ‘church’ or ‘chapel’ were more likely to identify as Christian. See this:
a-left) Street-name indicator measuring the historical importance of Christianism (percentage of streets containing the word ‘church’ or ‘chapel’)
b-right) Percentage of the population identifying themselves as Christian (from census data)
The correlation with religiosity seems a bit weak in parts of these maps especially West central Scotland. Three strongly Christian areas are there yet they’re clearly deprived of street names to keep up their spirits (;-). Also street names in North-east Scotland failing to stem the tide of atheism.
There’s a street in Muirkirk called ‘Pagan Walk’. The RC Primary School used to be there but has since closed. Who knows how many ‘Union Streets’ there are. Maybe I should move from my current address at……guess?