Coal mining has been carried out in Brora since the 16th century and was continued up until 1974. It was Jane, Countess of Sutherland who opened the first coal pit in Brora in 1598.
The history of the parish of Clyne is dominated by its long industrial past, e.g. coal mining, salt panning, tweed production, distilling, electricity generation etc. The early industries were established by the house of Sutherland and by the late nineteenth century Brora became known as the Industrial Capital of the North.
It is believed coal mining first started in Brora, initially as an open cast pit. Over the years, large shafts were discovered, the most recent at Fascally. The coalmine was the farthest north coalmine in the UK. A Government Radio Receiving Station was in operation between 1940 and 1986. First town in North of Scotland to have electricity thanks to its wool industry.This distinction gave rise to the local nickname of “Electric City” at the time. Local football club Brora Rangers was founded in 1879 and moved to present stadium, Dudgeon Park, in 1922.
The coal is seen on the shore at Brora, near the old salt pans; and at this place it has frequently been dug, the overlying roof bed having been removed by blasting, it now forms a very conspicuous reef on the shore at low water (Polson 1902).