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Scotland

In the library folder, you will find a series of article in my Tour Notes for the Iceland Forestry Association's Tour of the Scottish Highlands in 2010. These give an insight into the general history, farming, and forestry of the districts we visited during this very successful and enjoyable tour.

Scotland’s first national park - The Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park - only came into being in 2002. The Trossachs, which is a small part in the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park, (created in 1953) to celebrate the coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II (1st of Scotland), is much celebrated in literature and history of the. Like most of Scotland in the 1940's much of the district was virtually treeless mainly because it was mainly valuable sheep pasture or managed for grouse moors. Nevertheless, there are remnants of ancient forests birch and oak woodlands and a few remnants of Caledonian pine within the extensive plantations stocked mostly with exotic spruce, pine, Douglas fir and larch that were introduced in the early 19th century. Nowadays, while coming into a landing at Glasgow airport, passengers would see great swaths of dark forests with sharp edges. Not to put too fine a point on it, many Scot’s describe them as muckle scarts on the landscape. Nevertheless, the muckle scarts have generated a whole new complaining industry - notwithstanding the fact that the muckle scarts are a very profitable industry from a timber point of view as well as being Scotland's most favourite recreational areas. But it is a brave soul that gets entwined in the vitriolic landscape politics in Scotland. So this website will stick to the benign reminiscence of a teenage forestry worker who has partaken in the remarkable transformation from overgrazed, bracken-infested and decrepit mountain slopes into productive and economically and socially beneficial and BEAUTIFUL landscape changes.

frontispiece map     1-high-road-to-inverness    2-skye   3-dingwall   4-noble-perthshire 

5 big tree country    6 highland farming   7-duke-atholls-forest-r.pdf     8-highland-forests 9 romantic forests     11 arboreta    12 the trossachs    14 forest worker  15 stirling castle    16 glasgow smiles better 

PHOTOGRAPHS OF SCOTLAND

by

ALEXANDER ROBERTSON

 

 

 


Shieling and Ben Nevis
Peace Garden in Perth
Hugh Clayden, Head of Forestry Commission (Scotland) Biosecurity lecturing the Memebers of the Iceland Forestry Associaition in the David Marshall in Aberfoyle
The newly refurbished Steamship the Sir Walter Scott on Loch Katrine with many Icelanders on board.
A wee bit of The Duke of Athol's famous forest estate on Craig-a-Barns, Dunkeld
St. Andrews, Glasgow
St. Andrews-by-the-green (Glasgow Green, that is). General James Wolfe of the Battle of Ambraham Heights Quebec fame, This is close to the other St. Andrews had his troops build this church when was a junior officer. It also has the gravestone of the woman killed by a motor car.
Beautiful wild Gorse and Isle of Skye
Benmore Botanical Garden and Outdoor Educational centre. Formley the Foresty Commission (Scotland) Forester Training School
Alexandria near Loch Lomond. This beautiful building started out as as are as car factory for Argyll Motors. Now a shopping centre
Drumlanrig Castle, Dumfries is owned by the Duke of Buccluech. It was once the residence of Mary Queen of Scots.
Benmore Botanical Garden and Arboretum
Benmore Botanical Garden
Benmore Arboretum and the "policies" as they call the forested lands on the hills.
The third tallest tree in Britain at 54m a Douglas fir. The tallest at Ardkinglas, also a Douglas Fir, is at Ardkinglas at 64m tall.
Benmore Arboretum is famous for its Rhododendron Collection established by the previous owner Harry Younger - of the famous beer brewing family.
Glen Affric - Heather and Caledonian Pine
The tallest Headge in Britain at 30m tall and 530m long. It is at Meikleour, near Perth. It was planted by Jean Mercer folowing the death of her husban Robert Murray Nairne at the Battle of Culoden in 1745
Typical Perthshire forest and farm land near Gleneagles.
Livestock in the Highlands
Garron Horses near Newtonmor. In ancient times the garron was the preferred horse for knights in armour.
Travelling the backroads of Ross and Cromerty
The Dukes Pass at the Forestry Commission's David Marshal Lodge Interpretation Centre
Flanders Moss, Arnprior, Stirlingshire
Eilean Donan Castle c1970; i.e., before restoration
Glasgow Cathedral and The Royal Victorian Hospital.
This former Church is one of the finest pubs in Glasgow
Train service in Scotland is excellent and fast way to travel between town and country
Dunoon Ferry Pier
Stirling Castle
Horse-drawn barge on the Clyde-Forth Canal.
One many Druid carved stones in Goven Church.
Perth on the River Tay
Kilcurn Castle
A group of Iceland Forestry Associaion members wandering through the The famous hybrid Larch at Dunkeld Cathedral
The larch at Dunkeld Cathedral.
Drumnadrochit Castle, Loch Ness
Glenshiel
Inverary Castle, Home of the Duke of Argyll
A fine pig roast for dinner in the Inverary Castle.
Aberfoyle Graveyard where The Rev. Kirk of Fairy Folklore author of the The Secret Commonwealth. Although his Head stone still stands, his reamains are mysteriously missing (taken by the Faries!)
Adverikie - the setting for very popular "Monarch of the Glen" television series
The Scottish Baronial Gate House at Adverikie
The Duke of Athol's Athol Highlanders - the only legal private army in Europe
The william Wallace Monumenton Abbey Craig overlooking the site of the famous battle of Stirling Bridge.
Stirling Castle
Achnashellach. The railway traversing the hillside is reputed to be the most scenic railway in Europe.
Auchnashellach, once the home of Rob Roy MacGregor that was burned by Swiss mercenaries in
The solitary rowan tree by Lock Arklet and the Arrochar Alps on the west side of Loch Lomond. The Rowan is one of the most photographed trees in Britain.
Some young Norway Spruce growing on the site of the ancient shieling Bruach where Dr. Alexander Robertson was born.
On the opposite side of loch Arklet from Bruach is Corrieheechan where Mary McGregor was living with her uncle when Rob Roy MacGregor proposed marraige. They were wed at Corriearklet a few hundred yards west of Bruach.
Corriearklet Farm is all that reamins of the a substantial village that was the administrative centre for the district and where Rob Roy MacGregor (alias Roberts Campbell) was baptised in 1671 and later married Mary McGregor of Comer
Bruach was demolished in the 1950's and all that remains is an stone with an 18th century broad arrow mark on a stone and another with a brass plate for geodesic Survey to measure changes in the earth's crust
Up until the early 20th century Bruach would have had thatched roof like this one a few miles east of Bruach at Milton still being used for B&B. It is famous In Sir Walter Scott Novels Rob Roy where the fictitious fray in clachan took place and it's where Scott lodged.
The Arrochar Alps from Bruach
Main Street of the wee village of Aberfoyle in the heqart of the Trossachs and Loch Lomond National Park.
Both Aberfoyle Situated on the banks of the River Forth and Kirkton Farm on the opposite side it is prone flash floods as this camper discovered during the night.
Suidheachan, Sir Compton Mackenzie's House on Benbecula one of the western Islands. Among his best known among his 90 books are Monarch of the Glen, Whisky Galore. Extraordinary Women, Greek Memories. He was a Captain in the Royal Marines and Director of the Aegean Intellegence Service. In other words - a genuine James Bond.
A short walk from Compton Mackenzies house is the Benbecula Airport - the only airport in Brition that lands on a tidal beach. The flights are to-n-fro Glasgow
Typical highland road passing under the arches of beautiful natural broadleaf woodland.
The forestry Commission Scotland has been responsible for most of the plantation forestry in Scotland and to a lesser degree in England and Wales too. This is Craigvinean Forest opposite Dunkeld.
Beautiful pastoral scenery of the lowland at the south end of Loch Lomond.
Typical farmland and the famous Highland cattle are common in the broad glens.
Inverness on the banks of the River Ness. The River and Lochness has been an shortcut shipping route to the west Scotland long before the Viking age
The pleasant grounds of Dunkeld Cathedral
Galangad Farm, on the south end of Loch Lomond was made famous in Scott's epic "Lady of the Lake" Rob Roy's son James was to reposses the Galangad Bull and drive it up the trackless and almost impassable east side of the loch.
The Bull of Galangad
His hide was snow, his horns dark,
His read eye glow'd like fiery spark;
So fierce, so tamless, and so fleet,
So did he cumber our retreat.
The beautiful little Aberfoyle School opened in 1870 below the ancient oak woodland below Lime Craig - and still functioning.
The beautifull village of Galashiels in the Scottish borders
Dunning Mansion now a retirement centre
The famous contemporary shepherd, writer and lecturer John Barrington with Stirling Robertson.
The sheep are some of John's rare breeds
Dunsinane Hill, site of King MacBeth's Castle, This is not far from his cousin King Malcolm (Canmore) who slew McBeth. That much of shakespear's poem is true.
A touch of Gothic in Perth
Fingast Castle
Kelvin Hall Museaum, Glasgow
The famous Mitchell Library on North Street near Charing Cross, Glasgow.
Edith Cavell Memorial Garden
Edith Louisa Cavell (1865-1915) was a British nurse. She is celebrated for saving the lives of soldiers from both sides without distinction and in helping some 200 Allied soldiers escape from German-occupied Belgium during World War
Ben Lomond and Loch Ard Forest which became the Queen Elizabeth II Forest Park.Alexander Began his forestry career in 1945 by planting and tending the forest that are being harvested as shown in the photo.
Ben Lomond and extinct Volcanoe
Replanting immediatly after the mature plantation has been harvested. Snow capped Ben Lomond is in the distance.