Primrose Bay and the Hopeman Golf Course behind

Selected for Google Maps and Google Earth

Comments (9)

coldwaterjohn on February 10, 2008

Copyrighted - contact photographer for permission to use

Chris Souter on August 16, 2008

The bay in this picture is actually Clasach Cove. Primrose Bay is half a mile or so to the east of this location. The mix-up is actually very common as the bay pictured is very picturesque and seems to suit the name (although primroses don't grow there in any abundance).

coldwaterjohn on August 21, 2008

Chris You are correct; It is Clashach Cove on the Ordinance Survey maps, which shares its name with the quarry, but it has been known as Primrose Bay by one local family, for well over a hundred years, with photos taken in the late 1890s of previous generations posing on the rocks by its edge. I know that coastline well, so would be interested in the coordinates of what you refer to as Primrose Bay. Sixty years ago, when I used to swim there as a boy, I can assure you that the sheltered slopes were covered in primroses, although more recently they are far less apparent. It is a beautiful and relatively unvisited part of the Moray Coast, and site of the discovery of prehistoric animal skeletons, in the quarry nearby, and early man, in some of the caves.

Chris Souter on December 26, 2008

Hi John, sorry for the delay in replying to you - I forgot that I had posted this. I am from a family local to this area too and am a great lover of the coastline between Hopeman and Lossiemouth, particularly the cliffs and caves of Covesea. Primrose Bay is slightly to the east of Clasach Cove at 316905,870510 (I don't know the Landranger reference) in front of the site of another quarry (the long-since disused Covesea quarry).

On its western flank is a large headland but its eastern side is less distinct. The bay has a lovely sandy beach but is now unfortunately difficult to get to. There used to be a set of steps from the top to the bottom via a middle 'terrace', but the bottom steps fell to storm erosion many years ago whilst the upper steps fell victim to some soil being dumped there from Clasach quarry in more recent times. Some people with a head for heights still scramble down the steep grassy slopes that remain, but I prefer to take a long walk along the rocks from the sea stack closer to Covesea village. The abundance of primroses here is truly magnificent sight in springtime every year.

However doing a Google search on 'Primrose Bay' more often than not finds articles describing Clasach Cove (also locally known as Cove Bay), as this unfortunate confusion of name continues, although some still describe the real Primrose Bay. Even the Elgin-based newspaper the Northern Scot produced a local calendar featuring a picture of the Clasach Cove and labelled that 'Primrose Bay', and as a result drew correspondence to their Letters page correcting the error.

I guess that it could well be inevitable that Clashach Cove will inherit the name Primrose Bay from its forgotten neighbour as more and more people attach the name to it.

I have many pictures of Primrose Bay if you would like to see if it jogs some memories of the area?

Best regards


coldwaterjohn on December 26, 2008

Chris, I would welcome pix of THE Primrose Bay. My family's links with it go back to the first decade of the 20th centruy - pix of my father and brothers playing on the rocks at what we know as Primrose Bay in about 1912, labelled "Primrose Bay". So the misnoming is of long duration with us it seems. When the weather is better I will try to tackle the rediscovery of your Primrose Bay, on foot. But by all measn do send me the images you have.

Chris Souter on December 26, 2008

Hi John, I shall send some pics in the morning if you could furnish me with your email address or let me know how I could send them to you. If you don't want to post this on here please feel free to email me at and I will send some pics by return.

The bay I know as Primrose Bay isn't as compact as Clashach Cove, but is still beautiful in its own right. If you get the chance I am sure you would appreciate the firm sand below the headland that I always recall it for. I was there on Christmas Eve and the peacefulness of it was magnificent.


MartinKSmith on August 11, 2009

Awesome picture. I was camping there last night, with some friends. It's weird seeing it from that angle.

bentley2009 on September 2, 2009

Apparently in the 1300's it was know as Bay of Primroses. I scramble down there once or twice a week, a little bit of solitude does the soul a lot of good.

coldwaterjohn on September 2, 2009

bentley - we are in agreement on its name, but there are suitors for a bay to its east for the title, Primrose Bay, - see above. I am not as frequent a visitor as yourself although I have been visiting it for almost sixty years, and parents and grandparents before me! It's a shame the original route down has become such a vertical descent now - take care...

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Photo taken in Unnamed Road, Elgin, Moray IV30 5QR, UK

Photo details

  • Uploaded on February 10, 2008
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by coldwaterjohn
    • Camera: Canon PowerShot Pro1
    • Taken on 2007/08/19 15:44:03
    • Exposure: 0.006s (1/160)
    • Focal Length: 16.09mm
    • F/Stop: f/4.000
    • Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV
    • No flash