Tuesday, October 16, 1866
At a quarter-past ten left for Ballater with Lenchen
and Louise ; Christian, Arthur, the Duchess of Roxburghe and Emily
Cathcart in the second; the gentlemen (General Grey, [He died on
March 31, 1870. He had been with me as equerry from the time I came
to the Throne. In 1846 he became Private Secretary to the Prince,
and from December 1861 held the same position with me till his
death. He was highly esteemed and valued by us both, and his loss
grieved me deeply.] etc.) having gone on in front. We went by the
railway, which was useful on this occasion. We went about
three-quarters of an hour by railway, and then stopped close to Inchmarlo, Mr.
Davidson’s place, not far from Kincardine O’Neil. Here we got into
carriages—Lenchen and Louise with me,—Christian, Arthur, and the two
equerries, etc., in the next. About twenty minutes’ drive took us
to Inrercannic, where the' ceremony took place. I got out and stood
outside the tent while the Lord Provost (whom I knighted
at Aberdeen in 1863) read the address. Then I had to read my answer,
which made me very nervous; but I got through it well, though it was
the first time I had read anything since my darling Husband was
taken from me. Then came the turning of the cock, and it was very
pretty to see the water rushing up.
These waterworks are on a most extensive scale, and
are estimated to convey to the city 6,000,000 gallons of water
daily. The water is from the river Dee, from which it is diverted
at Cairnton, about four miles above Banchory. The principal features
of the works are a tunnel 760 yards in length, which is cut through
the hill of Cairnton, composed of solid rock of a very hard nature.
At the end of the tunnel is the Invercannie Reservoir, where the
ceremony took place. This reservoir is estimated to contain
15,000,000 gallons of water. It is just two years and a half since
the first turf of the undertaking was cut, and the cost of the works
is 130,000/. The ceremony was over in less than a quarter of an
hour, and we returned as we came, stopping a moment at the door of
Mr. Davidson’s house, where his daughter presented me with a
nosegay. The day was fine and mild. The people were very kind, and
cheered a good deal.
We got back at twenty minutes past two.