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Dyce

Dyce

[dahys]
Dyce, Alexander, 1798-1869, Scottish editor. He is best known for his scholarly editions of the works of Elizabethan and Jacobean dramatists, including those of George Peele, Robert Greene, John Webster, Christopher Marlowe, Beaumont and Fletcher, and a nine-volume edition of Shakespeare (rev. ed. 1864-67).
Dyce is a suburb of Aberdeen, Scotland, about six miles (about nine kilometres) northwest of Aberdeen city, best known for being the location of the city's airport. It is on the River Don.

History

Dyce is the site of an early medieval church dedicated to the 8th century missionary and bishop St. Fergus, otherwise associated with Glamis, Angus. Today the cemetery, north of the airport, and overlooking the River Don, hosts the roofless but otherwise virtually complete former St. Fergus Chapel, within which Pictish and early Christian stones from the 7th-9th centuries, found in or around the churchyard, are displayed (Historic Scotland; open at all times without entrance charge).

The Chapel is a unicameral late medieval building with alterations perhaps of the 17th or 18th centuries (the addition of doors in the east and west gables, and enlarged windows). It was restored and repointed by Historic Scotland in recent years, having for many decades been shrouded with a heavy growth of ivy, which obscured its architectural features (eg. three blocked pointed Gothic doorways and an elaborate east gable finial). The building is constructed of granite rubble. Though roofless and of modest size, it is one of the better-preserved small late medieval churches in Scotland.

The collection of early medieval carved stones, one of the finest at a single site in north-east Scotland were removed during the restoration from their setting in an alcove in the blocked east door, conserved, and rehoused in a more accessible open shelter protected by a lean-to slated roof inserted within the church's west end.

The collection consists of: i) A particularly well-preserved Pictish symbol stone, incised with the 'Pictish beast' and double disc and Z-rod symbols. ii) A largely complete Pictish cross-slab, carved on one face in relief with an interlaced cross with central spiral boss and four Pictish symbols. When removed from its previous setting, in which only the cross-face was visible, it was discovered that the slab has an Ogham inscription on one side. This inscription, in the Pictish language, is one of the longest and best-preserved of this type to survive in Scotland. It is probably memorial in character. iii) Four small slabs with different forms of crosses. Probably early medieval grave-markers.

All these stones are carved on monoliths or slabs of the local granite. An interpretation board describing the carved stones has been placed beside them by Historic Scotland. Two further carved stones, of uncertain (though probably early) character, were discovered re-used as building rubble in the inner east gable and outer south wall during the chapel's restoration. They were left in situ and are readily visible. A broken font, somewhat resembling a round-backed chair in its present condition, lies outside the church, and may also be of early medieval date.

The graveyard surrounding the old church was used into the 20th century, and retains almost no old gravestones. There is a small 'mort house' in one corner of the enclosure, which is adjoined by a modern extension, still in use for burials.

Recent history

Aberdeen Airport, immediately west of the town, opened in 1934. From the mid 1970s, Dyce grew in size greatly due to the oil industry and all the expansion associated with it. The main BP Oil Company headquarters were built here for easy access to the airport. Dyce railway station had been closed for some years, but in September 1984 it was reopened to serve the airport.

Facilities

Dyce has one main shopping centre which is mainly an Asda store with a Boots chemist, a hairdresser, a pet shop, and a travel agent. The local secondary school, Dyce Academy has about 500 pupils. There is also a primary school, Dyce Primary School.

The area of Aberdeen has good sports facilities including the local junior football team Dyce Boys Club F.C. who currently play in the Scottish Junior Football Association North Region and the cricket team.

Aberdeen wins 'Britain In Bloom' nearly all the time with Dyce, North-West end of Aberdeen, winning awards in its own right.

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