The Origins of Candacraig
There are two hotels in the world called Candacraig. One is nestled within the Cairngorms National Park in Scotland and was once owned by Sir Billy Connolly and Anita Roddick; the other is over 8000 miles away and is a former “chummery” in Maymyo, Burma. It is the latter that the duo takes their name from.
What is a “chummery”
A chummery was a building where predominantly unmarried young Westerners would hang out to eat, drink, play billiards, tennis, cards, etc. The climate would have been unbearably hot for the mainly British colonials in Burma who would be overseeing trade in rubber, teak, oil and tobacco. Maymyo, being a hill station, had a much more temperate climate than the capital, Rangoon, so the British would retreat there during the height of summer and stay at chummeries like Candacraig.
Fast forward to November 2000 and the Ex-gratia Payment for Far East POWs and Civilian Internees. The British Government established this compensation for all British citizens who had been imprisoned by the Japanese during WWII. Jimmy received a sum of money which he used to pay for him and his wife Pam, his daughter Collette and Martin and Sharon to visit Burma for three weeks to see this country that he had waxed lyrical about, but had not returned to since he left for the UK in 1950.
The time spent in Burma but particularly Maymyo, had such an emotional impact upon both Martin and Sharon, that when it came to finding a name for their vaguely folk inspired version of neo prog rock, the Gaelic name of Candacraig (which roughly translated means the head of the rock) was an obvious choice.