David Alston - The Fractured Life of Pasha Liffey

When: Sunday, May 5th 2024, Start Time: 11:30, End Time: 12:30

Where: Cromarty Courthouse

Part of:
Crime & Thrillers Weekend

Pasha Liffey was the last Black man – and the only Black African – to be executed in Scotland, hung for a murder in Larkhall (Lanarkshire) in 1905. He was only 24 and died despite the jury’s unanimous recommendation for mercy. Born in Lesotho in Southern Africa, Liffey had travelled to Britain three times. He was a stable boy, a performer around the UK in the exploitative 'Savage South Africa' show, a ‘runner’ for British troops during the Anglo-Boer War, a circus hand, groom, milkman, barman and boxer. He was guilty of a brutal murder but his life – with his descent into poverty and alcohol abuse – illustrates what it was to be young, poor, Black and isolated in Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

David Alston has lived in Cromarty for over 35 years and was the founding curator of Cromarty Courthouse Museum. In 2022 his Slaves and Highlanders: Silenced Histories of Scotland and the Caribbean was named the Saltire Society Scottish Book of the Year. He has also published a number of articles in academic journals, mainly on Scotland and slavery, and he is the author of My Little Town of Cromarty, a social and economic history.


20:00 - 21:30 , Victoria Hall, Cromarty

Mark Bridgeman - Trail by Jury

09:30 - 10:45 , Victoria Hall, Cromarty

Donna Freed in conversation with Nicola White

11:30 - 12:30 , Victoria Hall, Cromarty

JD Kirk, and introducing FE Birch

14:15 - 15:15 , Victoria Hall, Cromarty

Anthony Horowitz in conversation with Ian Rankin

15:45 - 17:00 , Victoria Hall, Cromarty

Future CAT Events

Contact Information

19 Bank Street, Cromarty
IV11 8YE Scotland

T: 01381 600354


Cromarty Arts Trust is recognised as a Scottish Charity number SC003018

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