Laing Clan History
The name Laing derives from the word meaning ‘long’ or ‘tall’. Over the centuries it has been recorded under various different spellings. Numerous Laings have been recorded in Scotland, with some as early as the 14th century, and in wide range of vocations.

In 1357 Thomas Laing requested that Dumfries should pay part of the ransom of King David II after he was captured by the English after the Battle of Neville’s Cross in the October of 1346. Thomas Layng, who was a notary public in Edinburgh in 1461, is also recorded in 1467 as Thomas Laing (burgess and notary public).

In 1472 a John Layng held the roles of rector of Newlands, treasurer to King James III, as well as bishop of Glasgow. His name is found in the Glasgow Protocol books in the 16th century.

In 1502 Archibald Layng was a priest and notary public in the St Andrews diocese, and in 1623 a John Laying was recorded in Tolhoip in Shetland. David Laing (1790-1878) was a distinguished antiquary.

In Kintyre Laing is sometimes used as a shortened version of the name Loynachan.

Cosmo Gordon Lang was the Archbishop of York (1908-1928) before being appointed as the Archbishop of Canterbury (1928-1942). He was born in Fyvie, Aberdeenshire in 1864, the son of a Presbyterian minister. As Archbishop of Caterbury Lang baptised Princess Elizabeth, the future Queen, in 1926, and officiated the coronation of George VI on the 12th of May 1937 after the abdication crisis from the previous year. The Archbishop was later made Baron Lang of Lambeth in 1942.

One of the most well known of the name is Sir John William Laing (1879 – 1978), founder of the construction company John Laing plc. Although born in England, Laing’s paternal family came from Scotland.