The Turra Coo

coo1Something’s happening in Turriff. Or it did 100 years ago.
Yes, here in the town that makes SleepyHollow look like a heaving metropolis, something is about to happen – again.
It was only 100 years ago, in November 1913 that A BIG EVENT happened locally. Well, the event was actually so big that it happened from September right through to November. At the time it was an act of defiance against the new fangled National Insurance Scheme. It’s gone down in history (or is that legend) as ‘The Turra Coo’ incident.
Never heard of it? Well, no, it doesn’t have the impact of the Bedroom Tax or indeed any other great world event, and for myself I’m still in two minds about exactly what the significance of the whole deal was.

Like most things, there are a number of sides to the story and with the benefit of hindsight it’s pretty hard to tell whether this was a revolutionary or a reactionary event. Depends on your perspective I suppose. But whatever, I thought it worth mentioning simply because it HAPPENED. And it’s going to be commemorated all over again this weekend.

Turriff isn’t widely known for anything much. Okay, there’s the biggest Agricultural Show in the North East every August but apart from that… so the Turra Coo centenary celebrations should just about hit the mark. And in order to give you all the big build up, right here all week  you can enjoy snippets from the ‘unveiling’ ceremony of the Turra Coo statue in November 2010 (see, up here the locals can get their act together to have things ready in advance of a big date!) The YouTube video is a bit shaky but at least someone was recording it. The last time the story of the Turra Coo was broadcast more widely, on BBC Radio was 2009 –(unavailable for viewing when I last checked it) so  if anyone knows anyone who has influence it would be nice to see it dusted off and re-broadcast (even only on iplayer) for the centenary (but then that would be too sensible a programming idea wouldn’t it?) Don’t hold your breath dear readers.  News in Turra tends to be only news for Turra. I guess there will be something in the local news about it – maybe even hit BBC Scotland- but you heard it here first…

Anyway, for those who want to know about Cows, revolution and not paying your National Insurance… here’s part one.
Introduction to the Turra Coo ‘incident’


About callyphillips

One Response to The Turra Coo

  1. Great story. Why was it cut off before the singing?

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