Isn't it exciting to be in at the start of something?
The Elsick Development Company (EDC) is building a new town of about 9,000 homes at Chapelton oF Elsick to the west of Newtonhill which is on the A90 between Stonehaven and Aberdeen. The Duke of Fife owns the land there, and has promised a town with seven pedestrian-scaled neighbourhoods designed to be inherently sustainable, and which will be desirable and fulfilling places to live and work. Whilst the town is new, the family is not.
The Earl of Fife or Mormaer of Fife was the highest ranking noble of Scotland who enjoyed the right to crown the Kings of Scotland. The title ceased when Murdoch, Duke of Albany was executed by James I. The title was revived in 1885 when Queen Victoria knighted Alaxander Duff, who had proved his descent from Macduff, Earl of Fife. He married Princess Louise, the third child of the future King Edward VII. Queen Victoria then elevated him to Duke, and created a second peerage which - uniquely - could pass down the female line. The earlier of the 19th century titles became extinct on the Duke's death in 1912.
The newer title passed to his elder daughter Alexandra. She married Prince Arthur of Connaught the seventh of Queen Victoria's nine children. They had only one child, Prince Alastair, who died aged 28 in unusual circumstances "on active service" in Canada. His first cousin, James Carnegie succeeded as 3rd Dule of Fife and Earl of Macduff, upon Princess Alexandra's death in 1959.
Louise's elder sister was Lady Maud Duff, who married Charles Carnegie, 11th Earl of Southesk. That title goes back to 1633 when Sir David Carnegie of Kinnaird was given the title. The 11th Earl and Lady Maud had one son, James Carnegie (b1929). This was James who inherited the title Duke of Fife on the death of his aunt Priincess Alexandra. The title Earl of Southesk is now used as a subsidiary title of the Duke of Fife, and is used by the 11th Earl's grandson David Carnegie.
The Chapelton of Elsick project is being managed by David Southesk who has extensive land management experience from his role at the helm of Southesk Estates, a 2,800 Ha agricultural estate in Angus. Following a law degree at the University of Cambridge, David worked in corporate finance at London stockbroker Cazenove & Co. before moving to Angus where he qualified as a chartered accountant and practiced with Reeves & Neylan. He also holds an MBA from Edinburgh University and a land management diploma from the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester.
The other EDC director is David's wife Caroline Carnegie, Countess of Southesk, formerly Caroline Bunting, who has a modern languages degree from Exeter University. Her background is in PR, having worked for Carl Byoir and Ogilvy & Mather in London and freelance in Scotland.