Document 832

Katie Morag and the Two Grandmothers

Author(s): Mairi Hedderwick

Copyright holder(s): Mairi Hedderwick: reproduced with consent of the Random House Group


One sunny Wednesday morning Mrs McColl woke Katie Morag early.

"Hurry up, now!" she said, drawing back the curtains. "Here comes the boat. Granma Mainland will be here soon and you've still got this room to tidy for her."

Granma Mainland lived far away in the big city. She was coming to stay with them for a holiday.

Katie Morag went with her other grandmother, Grannie Island, who lived just across the Bay, to meet the boat.

"My, you're still a smart wee Bobby Dazzler," said Neilly Beag, as he helped Granma Mainland down.

Grannie Island revved the engine very loudly. BUROOM... BUROOM... BUROOM...

Katie Morag watched, fascinated, as Granma Mainland unpacked.

"Do you like this new hat I've brought for Show Day, Katie Morag?" Granma Mainland asked.

"Och, her and her fancy ways!" muttered Grannie Island to herself.

Show Day was always a big event on the Island of Struay. At the Post Office, Mr and Mrs McColl were rushed off their feet.

"Look where you're GOING!" shouted Mrs McColl, as Katie Morag tripped over baby Liam.

"Katie Morag, I think you'd be better off helping Grannie Island get Alecina ready for the Show," sighed Mr McColl.

Alecina was Grannie Island's prize sheep. She had won the Best Ewe and Fleece Trophy for the past seven years, but she was getting old, and everyone said that Neilly Beag's April Love would win it this year.

Katie Morag ran as fast as she could, past the Show Field, where frantic last-minute preparations were in progress, and on to Grannie Island's in order to give Alecina an extra special brush and comb before the judging started.

But when Katie Morag arrived at Grannie Island's, Alecina was up to her horns in the Boggy Loch.

"A whole hillside to eat and she wants that blade of grass!" cried Grannie Island in a fury.

"Look at your fleece! And today of all days, you old devil!" ranted Grannie Island when they eventually got Alecina out of the Boggy Loch. "We'll never get these peaty stains out in time for the Show"!

"Granma Mainland has some stuff to make her hair silvery white..." said Katie Morag thoughtfully.

Everyone looked in amazement as Grannie Island's old tractor and trailer hurtled past the Show Field, heading for the Post Office.

"We'll be too late!" grumbled Grannie Island.

Fortunately, no one was about when they got home, since Mrs McColl would certainly not have approved of this... [NOTE: picture of ewe in the bathtub]

...or this. [NOTE: picture of ewe getting rubbed down with a towel]

And Granma Mainland would have been furious at this... [NOTE: picture of ewe being dried with a hairdryer, and having curlers put in]

...not to mention this. [NOTE: picture of ewe being dabbed with perfume]

But all ended well. They managed to get tidied up and back to the Show Field just in time for the judging, and, at the sight of Alecina's shiny coat and curls, the judges were in no doubt as to who should win the Silver Trophy again this year.

That evening there was a party at Grannie Island's to celebrate.

"My, but thon old ewe is still some beauty for her age," said Neilly Beag. "Just like yourself, Granma Mainland. How do you do it?"

"Ah, that's my secret," said wee Granma Mainland, fluttering her eyelashes.

Katie Morag and Grannie Island smiled at each other. They knew some of the secret, but would never tell.

And Grannie Island never frowned at Granma Mainland's "fancy ways" every again. I wonder why?

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Cite this Document

APA Style:

Katie Morag and the Two Grandmothers. 2024. In The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. Retrieved 25 July 2024, from

MLA Style:

"Katie Morag and the Two Grandmothers." The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow, 2024. Web. 25 July 2024.

Chicago Style

The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech, s.v., "Katie Morag and the Two Grandmothers," accessed 25 July 2024,

If your style guide prefers a single bibliography entry for this resource, we recommend:

The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. 2024. Glasgow: University of Glasgow.


Information about Document 832

Katie Morag and the Two Grandmothers


Text audience

Children (under 13s)
Audience size 1000+
Writer knew intended audience

Text details

Method of composition Handwritten
Year of composition 1984
Word count 572

Text medium


Text performance/broadcast details

Where performed/broadcast Inner Hebrides (Mull, Islay, Coll, Tiree, Colonsay, etc) in Aug./Sept. 2005
Performed/broadcast by Mull Theatre

Text publication details

Publisher The Bodley Head
Publication year 1985
Place of publication London
ISBN/ISSN 0099118718
Edition 1st
Part of a longer series of texts
Name of series Katie Morag series

Text setting


Text type

Prose: fiction
Other Children's picture story book


Author details

Author id 336
Forenames Mairi
Surname Hedderwick
Gender Female
Decade of birth 1930
Educational attainment University
Age left school 18
Upbringing/religious beliefs Protestantism
Occupation Writer and illustrator
Place of birth Gourock
Region of birth Renfrew
Birthplace CSD dialect area Renfr
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Isle of Coll
Region of residence Argyll
Residence CSD dialect area Arg
Country of residence Scotland
Father's occupation Architect
Father's place of birth Luanza
Father's region of birth Belgian Congo
Father's country of birth Central Africa
Mother's occupation Housewife
Mother's place of birth Greenock
Mother's region of birth Renfrew
Mother's birthplace CSD dialect area Renfr


Language Speak Read Write Understand Circumstances
English Yes Yes Yes Yes Work and home
Gaelic; Scottish Gaelic Yes No No Yes Very minimal, basic, at home
Scots Yes Yes Yes Yes Minimal, basic, at home