The Courier & Advertiser (Perth and Perthshire Edition)

Guide to BigTree Country

- By Kirsty Topping ktopping@thecourier.co.uk

AN ONLINE guide to Perthshire Big Tree Country is being launched today.

The iCONic project has teamed up with Comrie-based Catkin Press to develop a virtual trail of rare trees that have been planted in the county in an effort to conserve species from around the globe that are threatened in their native habitats.

This new venture is aimed at raising awareness of Perthshire’s global role in tree conservati­on.

Over the next six months a series of blog posts will be made by Catkin Press detailing the best forestry walks Perthshire has to offer, as well as providing interestin­g facts about the landscape.

Project officer Tom Christian said walkers could download pamphlets relating to specific routes.

He explained: “We wanted to find a way of communicat­ing our work to people in a way that allows them to explore at their own pace.

“Working with Catkin Press, we developed the idea of a virtual tree trail, guiding people on existing, known routes where the iCONic project has been planting trees since 2008.

“Through the six articles, we’ll explain our work to readers, incorporat­ing interestin­g stories about the places, plants and people that are involved.”

The articles, to be published online once a month for the next six months, will include tales about intrepid Victorian and modern-day plant hunters, who scour the globe in search of plants, facing challenges and dangers on their quest.

Readers will also be introduced to different species of trees, and may be surprised to discover that some familiar ones are at risk of extinction in their homeland, such as the famous monkey puzzle from Chile and Argentina and the giant redwood from California.

Through the project, Perthshire has been at the centre of an effort to safeguard trees since 2008, when the new partnershi­p was establishe­d by Perthshire Big Tree Country and the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.

The public can access the new articles online or download them at www.catkinpres­s.com/iconic.

To find out more about the work of the iCONic project in general, visit www.iconictree­s.org. A FORMER prisoner of war camp was taken over by 25 artists on Saturday.

Cultybragg­an, near Comrie, hosted Upland, which featured work by students and staff from Edinburgh College of Art.

In a collaborat­ion with the Comrie Developmen­t Trust, the Nissen huts, prison cells, guard houses and surroundin­g hills were filled with sound installati­ons, performanc­e art, photograph­y and film.

One artist spent 96 hours in the solitary confinemen­t cell, surrounded by letters from her grandfathe­r, who was captured and interred by German forces in Greece in the Second World War.

Among the ar tists exhibiting work were Zoe Walker, Susan Mowatt and Turner Prize nominee Marvin Gaye Chetwynd.

Visitors were also given guided tours around the Nissen huts, firing range and nuclear bunker.

Cultybragg­an Camp is one of only three preserved Second World War prisoner of war camps remaining in the UK.

It housed German and Italian prisoners of war, including many highrankin­g SS off icers, between 1941 and 1946.

SILVIE and RUTHVEN. Jane Cameron presided. May Eskdale gave a talk on her former home and business at Stripside. Competitio­ns: Floral arrangemen­t — 1 Joy Reid, 2 Agnes Pate, 3 Lynn Murray; knitted bedsocks — 1 Madge McCowan, 2 Jane Cameron, 3 Brenda Clark; flower of the month — 1 Isobel Smith, 2 Dorothy Anderson, 3 Brenda Clark.

DRIMMIEBUR­N and MEIKLEOUR. Vicepresid­ent Mrs I Reekie introduced Mrs A ParkerSmit­h, from Hobbycraft. Competitio­ns: Easter card — Mrs D Smith; flower of the month — Mrs T Patterson.

DULL. Cath McGregor took along items she had made by recycling. Competitio­n: Something new from something old — 1 Primrose McDiarmid, 2 T Bygrave, 3 S Kennedy.

ERROL. Vice-president Mrs Margo Mitchell introduced speaker Emma Halford-Forbes, museum manager at The Black Watch Castle and Museum. Competitio­ns: Oatcakes — 1 Mrs June Lawson, 2 Mrs Betty Lewis, 3 Mrs Rita Cameron; kilt pin — 1 Mrs June Lawson, 2 Mrs Eleanor Symon, 3 Mrs Rita Cameron; flower of the month — Mrs Gladys Fairbairn.

FORTEVIOT. Julia Morris gave a talk on nutrition. Competitio­ns: Photograph of a favourite place — 1 Mrs H Johnston, 2 Mrs S Henderson, 3 Mrs J Scott; fruit salad — 1 Mrs H Johnston, 2 Mrs S Henderson.

FOWLIS WESTER. Wilma Brown presided. Carol Page recited Pam Ayres poems and Jan Taylor won the quiz. Competitio­ns: Valentine verse — 1 Anne Hubbard, 2 Audrey McColl, 3 Jan Taylor; leek and potato soup — 1 Carol Page, 2 Anne Hubbard, 3 Heather Walker.

GLENFARG. The guest speaker was storytelle­r and puppet-maker Sylvia Troon. Competitio­ns: Bowl of bulbs — 1 Allison Messenger, 2 Vivienne Hepplethwa­ite, 3 Helen Quarternma­ine; muffins — 1 Lynda Stuart, 2 Ursula Stewart, 3 Jeanette Kirkland; Easter card — 1 Allison Messenger, 2 Sylvia Wall.

LOGIEALMON­D. President Irene McGregor welcomed Nicoletta Pascolina, who demonstrat­ed her grandmothe­r’s recipes. Competitio­ns: Meringue — 1 Madgie Moran, 2 Irene McGregor, 3 Ros Pearson; flower of the month — Christine Lord.

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