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Tracing the Mackay Clan

22 January 2020
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Leigh Mackay is Chair of the Infrastructure and Planning Committee, working as a governance consultant, advising on boards on governance and strategic planning. She is a member of the Victorian Heritage Council and The Lyceum Club and additionally, she is one of our nine highly passionate and skilled Trust members of SMCT. Each of our Trust members brings a vast depth of knowledge in their respective fields of expertise as they oversee the strategic direction of our organisation.

Recently, Leigh had the privilege of visiting Bettyhill, a small coastal town in the North of Scotland. Located within the breathtaking Scottish Highlands, Bettyhill hosts a wealth of history and is in fact the original homeland of Leigh’s very own ancestors; the Mackay Clan.

“I’ve known about this place for a long long time, it was always talked about. Because it was so far away and so remote, it seemed like a bit of a dream that I would ever get there.”

Leigh noted that since leaving Scotland, her distant family settled in various locations throughout Europe, with many moving to England and a minority to South Africa; where Leigh grew up with her immediate family upon migrating to Australia.

Learning about family history gives insight into the generations who have lived before us. The way that we relate to stories from the past draws a deep connection to our heritage. Being able to gain insight into the original residence of her ancestors. Walking among the final resting place of some who may have had a direct line of connection with her own family, Leigh was able to experience something that she had deeply aspired to accomplish in her lifetime.

“There’s no other place in Scotland, except the cemetery in Bettyhill that can speak to me about my family. It was quite meaningful to go there and see the place and soak up the atmosphere and just wander around. I didn’t need to know that I was specifically related to anyone in that graveyard but it was a powerful experience.”

You can perform a deceased search of our Southern Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust locations here, alternatively, our customer car team would be delighted to assist with any enquiry by calling (03) 8558 8278.

Leigh Mackay at the Bettyhill cemetery and museum
Leigh Mackay at the Bettyhill cemetery and museum
The breathtaking views within the Scotland's Highlands
The breathtaking views within the Scotland's Highlands