Blairgowrie Advertiser

Exploring heritage with new walk maps

Charting history of area


Those with a love of the outdoors in east Perthshire and beyond have been encouraged to enjoy new walks presented on leaflets with a map.

The three walks all leave from Spittalfie­ld and are approximat­ely three to six miles in length, but people can do less if they want to.

The informatio­n is all taken from a book written by local author Jim Black – titled ‘Heart of the Stormont’ – which details how Spittalfie­ld was a planned weaving village and all of the first houses around the village green would have had handlooms within them.

Karen Todd is keen that people not only enjoy the coffee and cake from her

Walkin’ Cafe, but the joys of the trail at the same time.

Karen, who owns the cafe, explained: “People can collect the leaflets from the cafe with the descriptio­ns of the walks and we are only asking for a small donation that will go to a local charity.

“The three walks include different routes but all start and finish at the Walkin’ Cafe.

“People will pass the bowling green and cricket pitch and learn of their beginnings, and where the tennis courts used to be.

“They will pass the Delvine and Burnbrae Fishing Hut – this is very close to the stretch of water where Georgina Ballantine landed a 64lb salmon in 1922. Her record for a rod and line catch on a British River still stands.

“People will learn what ‘Kale Row’ and

‘Deedles’ are and find the red post box and note the engraving ‘ER VII.’ This indicates the post box belongs to the era of King Edward VII who reigned from 1901-10 and it’s still in use.

“People will also pass where the Roman legionary fortress once stood, which accommodat­ed 5500 soldiers.”

Karen continued: “My favourite walk is The Millhole route as it has so many memories for me as a youngster growing up in the area.

“It passes fields which used to be full of strawberri­es and raspberrie­s, where we all spent most of the summer holidays picking them to make money to buy our school clothes.

“It passes the cottage where I lived when I was very young and have great memories of building tree huts and dens in the woods.

“It also passes the primary school I went to. Back then there were so few cars on the road that we walked to school safely.”

She added: “The Walkin’ Cafe has gradually become a popular place for locals, walkers and cyclists – as well as passing tourists.

“We have just had our five-year anniversar­y since we opened. The five years have passed so quickly.

“It seems just a short time ago that family and friends helped me to transform the old village newsagent and Post Office into what it is today.

“Although Covid has been hard, we have had great support from the local community and customers from far and near.

“I would really like to say a big thank you to them all.”

Karen concluded: “My sister Lorna has painted a mural along a wall on one of the local walks and there are lots of leaflets on walks around Perth and Kinross, as well as the local area.

“There is also a selection of art, crafts and jewellery for sale created by locals.”

The Walkin’ Cafe is currently open from Thursdays to Saturdays, from 10am3.30pm.

 ?? ?? Leaflets Karen Todd of The Walkin’ Cafe with local author Jim Black
Leaflets Karen Todd of The Walkin’ Cafe with local author Jim Black

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