Stories in the Land was an exciting project from the Royal Scottish Geographical Society (RSGS) and University of Stirling which took place during 2013. While the journeys which started the project have passed, the stories live on in an exhibition, educational resources, academic research and, of course, stories!
Stories in the Land aimed to encourage local people to become collectors, creators and tellers of old and new stories inspired by the epic journeys of the Scottish drovers. A major focus was on providing opportunities to take part in local journeys of varying lengths from short walks of an hour or so, to expeditions lasting several days which involved ponies and a pony and cart!
These journeys included Travelling Tales, which linked primary school pupils from Badenoch and Lochaber, who had been taught using the project's Storyline Topic, with a band of travelling storytellers. The next adventure took a diverse group of geographers, geologists, educators, writers, artists and musicians on a Bedrock Walk linking Badenoch and Lochaber. Next, the Caol Youth Centre Duke of Edinburgh's Award group made their own Droving Journey, the first Scottish DofE expedition to be made with ponies.
As part of the wider project, Dr Greg Mannion from the University of Stirling interviewed participants of different generations, recordings their memories of the landscape and way of life in the past, and their experience of the project in the present. This research formed a key part of the Stories in the Land project.
A Shared Experience
Everyone taking part was invited to record their thoughts on the experience in poetry, prose, music, art, craft, performance, etc. It is also planned to record older people’s thoughts on how the landscape has changed, on how they connect with places, and on any first-hand accounts of droving. These stories were drawn together into an exhibition which was put on display as part of the Scottish International Storytelling Festival at the Scottish Storytelling Centre. The exhibition will itself go on a journey around participating communities before going on longer-term display at RSGS Fair Maid's House in Perth.
Thank you to our funders. The Stories in the Land project would not be possible without generous grant aid from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund, The Ernest Cook Trust, The Gannochy Trust, The Robertson Trust, Perth and Kinross Council and The Cross Trust.
Stories in the Land Events
11th - 15th June Travelling Tales
15th June Celebration Day at the Highland Folk Museum.
20th - 21st June Travelling Tales Spean Bridge. Corriechoille
15th - 20th July Bedrock Walk
1st August Duke of Edinburgh's Meet the Drovers Public Event - Lochaline
19th October Storytelling Performance - Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh
26th October 'All Our Stories' - International Storytelling Event, Highland Folk Museum.
18th October - 2nd November - Exhibition - Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh
Stories in the Land 2013.