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Learmonth brothers
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Learmonth brothers

This photo shows the Learmonth brothers. Absent from the photo are the sisters, four of them - Maggie, Bessie, Mary and Babs.

date unknown.
Picture added on 08 September 2013 at 19:10
I only knew Tommy, he along with his family lived here first at "Storehouse" near Cantick Head then at "Swartland" North Walls a very hard working man into old age and very full of fun and nonsense.

Tom as we knew him was to learn a new Headmaster at North Walls School how to cut and work peats, after some coaching from Tom they stopped for a break,Tom asked Mr Rioch how good he was at different subjects of education and Mr Rioch stated how he shone in all these subjects Tom said "Weel hids a good job yir good at something Mr Rioch "Furr yir no bl**dy good at cuttan peats" .They remained the best of friends the rest of their lives it was only a fun and they worked together in the peat hill for years.
Added by John Budge on 09 September 2013
The Tommy one looks like Tom that farmed Swartland in North Walls.... will it be him?

Added by Jimmy Hamilton on 12 September 2013
Great story Mr. Budge, about Tom. Nice to get a little flavor of what they were like as people.

Here are their birth years:-
Johnny 1895
George (Dod) 1896
David 1898 (killed in the war)
Maggie 1901 (8th December)
Bessie 1903
Willie 1904
Jimmy 1907
Tommy 1909
Horace 1911
Sammy 1913 (he would have been 100 in 16 days)
Mary & Archie (Twins) 1914
Bab 1916

There were 31 children of the following generation, Tommy was the master with seven children, followed by Bessie who had five, then Maggie, Jimmy, Sammy, Archie and Bab with three each, Horace with two, and Mary and Dod with one each. That leaves Johnny with none, and also David who died in WW1 had none.

Please note, the above is everything I know about them. I can't tell you anything more.
Added by Jim Horden on 26 September 2013
I mind Tom's great sense of humour, he frequented the Lyness Club, and would say he had wound up the cat and threw out the clock before he came down for a dram.
Added by Stewart Taylor on 28 September 2013
Yes thats him Tom Learmonth of Swartland, North Walls
Added by David Pottinger (Grandson) on 29 September 2013
Wow thanks for the interesting info. My husband is a grandson of Maggie and I hope to do research in the future.
I do query the date of the picture as William died in 1949 and is buried in Shapinsay.
Added by Angela Barnett on 09 October 2013
Ah, I forgot to add the names of the parents:
William Learmonth & Betsy Drever.

Now, Angela Barnett, Maggie married a 'Shearer' didn't she? What can you tell us about the family?

Added by Jim Horden on 10 October 2013
Another bit of info I've discovered is how Willie died.

It was a fatal accident; going too fast on a pedal bike with no brakes.
Apparently he used to stop the bike using his foot on the front tire, but this time he was going too quick, foot got caught and he went right over the handle bars.
Added by Jim Horden on 08 November 2013
I believe that the family get together was on the occasion of Bab's marriage to John Macleod which was 27th December 1943, in Kirkwall
Added by Kenny Learmonth on 18 September 2015
I believe that the photo was taken at the time of a rare gathering of the family at Bab's wedding on 27th December 1943. There is another picture of them all seated.
Added by Kenny Learmonth on 25 September 2015
The Learmonths lived next door to my father, at Breckan, Sanday ,and they went to school together. My father said they got to write an autobiography and Dod picked 'A rabbit' He knew nothing of the first two weeks for his eyes were closed, but the first day they opened he stuck his head out of the hole...and the farmer shot him....end of essay!
Added by Tommy G. on 29 October 2015
Added by MIKE BUCKLESS on 01 January 2022
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