Clan Buchanan un­veils chief... af­ter 337 years Lord Lyon Court up­holds pe­ti­tion

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - NEWS - BY NEIL DRYS­DALE

It is one of the most fa­mous names in Scot­land and has been ap­pended to bus and train sta­tions, li­braries and art gal­leries as far afield as the United States and Aus­tralia.

But for the past 337 years there has been no chief to rep­re­sent the mil­lions of men and women around the world who call them­selves part of Clan Buchanan.

Now the clan, one of the largest and most an­cient in Scot­land, will be led by John Michael Bail­lieHamil­ton Buchanan, who now be­comes known as The Buchanan.

He is step­ping into a po­si­tion last va­cated by his an­ces­tral kins­man, John Buchanan, who died with­out a male heir in 1681.

The Lord Lyon King of Arms, who reg­u­lates Scot­tish her­aldry, has for­mally up­held a pe­ti­tion for Mike Buchanan to as­sume the ti­tle.

This fol­lows decades of ge­nealog­i­cal re­search, con­ducted by renowned ge­neal­o­gist Hugh Pes­kett.

He be­came a ge­neal­o­gist 50 years ago af­ter his grand­mother (a Buchanan clanswoman her­self ) urged him to find the right­ful Buchanan chief.

Mr Pes­kett sub­se­quently re­searched his lin­eage back to 1370 and es­tab­lished ref­er­ences in more than 300 doc­u­ments from around the world.

The Buchanan said: “I am hon­oured and proud my claim to the chief­ship of Clan Buchanan has been up­held by Lord Lyon.

“There has not been a chief for a very long time, but there is a thriv­ing com­mu­nity of Buchanan clans­men, clanswomen and septs around the world.

“I look for­ward to meet­ing mem­bers of the clan, com­mit­ting my­self to clan mat­ters in Scot­land and at­tend­ing some of the pop­u­lar clan func­tions that take place over­seas.

“It has been a long jour­ney. We first ap­proached the Lyon Court in­for­mally over 20 years ago and it has taken decades of ge­nealog­i­cal re­search to back up our claim.

“I am in­debted to Hugh Pes­kett, my fel­low Buchanan clans­man, for his metic­u­lous re­search and en­dur­ing tenac­ity.”

The new chief is the man­ager of Cam­bus­more Es­tate near Cal­lan­der and has four chil­dren with his wife, the Lady Buchanan.

Ge­orge Lauder McAus­land, com­mis­sioner for Scot­land and the UK of the Clan Buchanan In­ter­na­tional So­ci­ety, said: “I would like to con­grat­u­late Michael Buchanan on his ap­point­ment.

“Hav­ing a chief for the first time in over 300 years will be an ex­cit­ing time.”

The group has tra­di­tion­ally flown a ban­ner at High­land games, fea­tur­ing a lion ram­pant with tears of sor­row to rep­re­sent the sad­ness of clans­men with­out a chief.

Now, though, they might need an up­dated ver­sion.

HAIL TO THE CHIEF: John Michael Bail­lie-Hamil­ton Buchanan, the newly an­nounced chief­tain of the Buchanan clan, with his wife the Lady Buchanan and their son Bruce

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