I was out for a pint with my good friend Jim last weekend.  He's from Anstruther, a small fishing village directly opposite us as we look across the Firth of Forth from North Berwick.  When I say that he's from Anstruther, I don't just mean that he was born there.  His mum and Dad were also both born there, all his uncles and aunts live within a 10 mile radius of Anstruther, and he is not aware of any ancestors that come from anywhere apart from Anstruther.

I can't begin to imagine what it must feel like to be so connected to a particular place (and to the fishing industry that was the lifeblood of the village). My Dad was from Mid-Wales, with parents from Mid-Wales and Shropshire, and my  Mum is from Bradford in Yorkshire.  I was born in the South of England and have lived in Scotland since 1983.  Unsurprisingly, I struggle to answer the question "where are you from?"!

Of course, the scattering of my ancestors last century is happening to my friend's family now - he doesn't live in Fife, and his wife is not from Fife.

I wonder how common it is now to have such solid roots in one town or village?


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