Skinfast Haven KRY C NO577038 1 374 0m
lie Skynfasthavyne 1544 St A. Formulare ii no. 497 [John Lauder, vicar of Kilrenny, concerning fish teinds, and the construction and repair ‘of the new maritime harbour formerly commonly called the Skinfast Haven’ (novi portus marini olim lie Skynfasthavyne vulgariter nuncupati)]
the Skynfast Hevyne 1579 APS iii, 167 [see discussion below]
lie Skynfast Heavyne 1579 APS iii, 168 [‘of the maritime harbour commonly (called) the Skinfast Haven situated on the sea shore beside the lands of Kilrenny’ (portus marini vulgo lie Skynfast Heavyne in ora maritima prope terras de Kylrynnie situat.)]
Skynfischtoun 1585 APS iii, 421 [John Beaton (Beton) of Balfour, ‘the toun of Kilrinne (Kilrenny) and porte of Skynfischtoun and diuerse vtheris of the lyk conditioun’]
? Sc skinfast + Sc haven
‘Harbour providing shelter in dangerous conditions?’. Although not recorded as a compound adjective, skinfast would seem to be composed of two Scots words, skin ‘skin’ and fast ‘fixed, firm, solid, strong against attack’, implying a place of safety and shelter in a perilous maritime environment. This was the old name for Cellardyke q.v. However, the OS Name Book reports: ‘The name Skinfast Haven is not popularly known, although it is the name given in all documents &c. connected with the harbour’ (85, 30).
In 1579 John Beaton of Balfour was infefted in ‘the toun and landis of Kilrynny liand in the regalitie of Sanctandrois ... in all and haill the port and heavyne callit the Skynfast Hevyne liand within the said toun of Kilrynnie with all and sindrie priuilegis ...etc.’ The Act notes that ‘the said Johnne to his greit chairges and expenses hes buyldit and reparit the said heavyne to the confort and commoditie of all personis frequentand nauigatioun alsweill within this realme as they quha sal happyne to repair to the samyne’ (APS iii, 167). Note that the title of the Act calls the same harbour ‘of Kilrenny’ (the heavin of Kilrynne).
It is sometimes abbreviated locally to Skimfie (HDW).
This place-name appeared in printed volume 3