Scottish Islanders urged to help preserve historic site overseas

A group from northern Scotland is looking for people of Scottish heritage in the Maritimes to help protect a historic site.

1689 battle site in northern Scotland at risk from roadwork, says group

There is a gathering at the Killiecrankie memorial every year, says Henrietta Ferguson. (Killiecrankie1689)

A group from northern Scotland is looking for people of Scottish heritage in the Maritimes to help protect a historic site.

Roadwork is planned over the site of the Battle of Killiecrankie. The 1689 battle was the first major engagement of the Jacobite rebellion, and one of the bloodiest in Scottish history, with 2,000 men killed in the space of an hour.

There's always been a huge link between Scotland and the east coast of Canada.- Henrietta Ferguson

Current plans for the creation of a divided highway between Perth and Inverness would pave over a crucial part of the battlefield, according to the group Killiecrankie1689.

Group member Henrietta Ferguson said improvements to the road are important, but the government should find another way to route the highway.

"Our argument is the way they're proposing to dual it is going to wipe out the most significant part of the battle site, because it's the part where all the killing took place,"  Ferguson said.

"The memorial is very close to the road at the moment and it's a place of remembrance and just a place where people can go and think about the battle and learn about the battle."

An international issue

The group has launched a petition against the plan, and is not content with just locals having their say. It is asking people of Scottish heritage on both sides of the Atlantic to sign.

"There's always been a huge link between Scotland and the east coast of Canada," Ferguson said.

It is a site of world importance, she said, so it made sense to reach out beyond Scotland for support.

If you want to sign you will need to do it quickly. The petition will be submitted to the Scottish Department of Transport on Tuesday at 8 p.m. AT.

With files from Angela Walker