r2vyln3rdioj14u-rld0ska where mountains meet the sea: 2019

Song of the Sea

The Song of the Sea project was a Tiree Maritime Trust project supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund. A group of young people worked with Jack Lockhart to research Tiree’s maritime heritage at An Iodlhann, record interviews and document events throughout the year. The young people also worked with Jamie MacDonald to write a new piece of music for the film.
The film was an opportunity for the group to learn more about their own heritage, collect stories and learn new skills in the process. - Tiree Maritime Trust

Grace on this St Patrick's Day

In an emotional interview with Ryan Tubridy on The Late Late Show, Rod Stewart discusses why Irish ballad Grace means so much to him.*

As we gather in the chapel here in old Kilmainham Gaol
I think about these past few weeks, oh will they say we've failed?
From our school days they have told us we must yearn for liberty
Yet all I want in this dark place is to have you here with me

Oh, Grace, just hold me in your arms and let this moment linger
They'll take me out at dawn and I will die
With all my love I place this wedding ring upon your finger
There won't be time to share our love for we must say goodbye

Now I know it's hard for you, my love, to ever understand
The love I bear for these brave men, my love for this dear land
But when Pádraig called me to his side down in the GPO
I had to leave my own sick bed, to him I had to go

Oh, Grace, just hold me in your arms and let this moment linger
They'll take me out at dawn and I will die
With all my love I place this wedding ring upon your finger
There won't be time to share our love for we must say goodbye

Now as the dawn is breaking, my heart is breaking too
On this May morn as I walk out, my thoughts will be of you
And I'll write some words upon the wall so everyone will know
I love so much that I could see his blood upon the rose

Oh, Grace, just hold me in your arms and let this moment linger
They'll take me out at dawn and I will die
With all my love I place this wedding ring upon your finger
There won't be time to share our love for we must say goodbye
No there won't be time to share our love for we must say goodbye
composed and written by Frank and Sean O'Meara


Heroes of Longhope

'Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for his fellow men'

At 9.35pm on March 17th 1969 the Principle Keeper at the Pentland Skerries Lighthouse reported seeing the Longhope Lifeboat, T.G.B.’s stern light heading east on a mission to aid those on board the Liberian ship Irene. This was the last contact with the RNLI’s Watson Class lifeboat from Longhope... - the RNLI, from Tragedy in the Pentland Firth: Marking the Longhope Lifeboat Disaster
In that one tragic night, the small township of Brims in Longhope, with only a population of 30 had lost a quarter of them, with seven women widowed and ten children left fatherless. Two of those women had lost both a husband and a son.
Coxswain Dan Kirkpatrick
Second Coxswain Jimmy Johnston (son of Mechanic)
Bowman Ray Kirkpatrick (son of Coxswain)
Mechanic Robert R Johnston
Assistant Mechanic Jimmy Swanson
Lifeboat man Jack Kirkpatrick (son of Coxswain)
Lifeboat man Robert Johnston (son of Mechanic)
Eric McFadyen
The music in the documentary above was a beautiful and poignant tribute composed by Ronnie Aim, Orcadian fiddler and past leader of the Orkney Strathspey and Reel Society. Here it is performed by the Wrigley Sisters

Save Glen Etive

Last summer I wrote a post about the threat to beautiful Glen Etive from seven hydro schemes. In that piece I described the glen as "surrounded by fine rugged mountains laced with deep narrow ravines and corries down which tumble fast flowing streams ........ . an area that should be left to become wilder with the pressures of overgrazing and commercial forestry removed not one sacrificed for a tiny smidgeon of energy." Chris Townsend, excerpted from Saving Glen Etive: Action Needed Now

...It is important to stress we are not opposed to renewable energy developments. Our members enjoy being in the mountains, and they are well aware of the impact of climate change.  We objected to three out of the seven proposed developments which we believe will have the biggest impact on the designated Wild Land Area. Our action in this issue demonstrates our support for helping to protect the integrity of the best mountainous landscapes in Scotland... - Stuart Younie, Mountaineering Scotland

Please take a moment to sign and share the 'Leave Glen Etive alone...' petition
Please contact our Highland Councillors here before March 20th
the Save Glen Etive campaign can be found on Facebook and Twitter

The drone footage was donated last week for the Save Glen Etive campaign. Essentially they would like to see the ones on the designated Wild Land area and National Scenic Area to be stopped, leaving the four schemes sitting within sitka forestry and clearfell to be built. In particular, Allt Mheuran and Allt Ceitlin (the next river to the north) form an absolutely wondrous traverse up Mheuran and that can pick up Ben Starav and Stob Gabhar and then down Ceitlin. If you live in the Highlands, please contact your councillors and put in an objection.

UPDATE March 20: Councillors to approve all Glen Etive hydro plans!


Frjòey - Wings over Fair Isle

"Frjóey" is the old norse name for Fair Isle, a remote island of northern Scotland between Orkney and Shetland islands. This little gem, far from mass tourism, is one of the most interesting places in Europe for the observation of pelagic and wader birds. I don't really know if this video does give justice to this little corner of paradise, for sure I don't think it will be of any use to help me to carry forever the memory of the days I passed there, cause these days was really truly unforgettable. I hope you like it ;)  - Nicola Di Sario

The loss this week to fire of the Fair Isle Bird Observatory (as featured in Shetland Series 2: Blue Lightning) is a major tragedy for the island and especially for the wardens and their family. The building was fully insured and all the Observatory's 70 years of records were digitised and preserved. But if you'd like to help the Parnaby family, who lost everything, there's a GoFund Me page here. [now closed] - Tom Morton's Beatcroft

Dioplòma anns na Meadhanan Gàidhlig

Sabhal Mòr Ostaig

Staffin Crofters’ Memorial

Commissioned artists, Henry Castle, sculptor, and Tom Smith from design collective, Lateral North, discuss their research and development of ideas for what a contemporary memorial to the crofters' uprising in Staffin could be. - Atlas Arts


This is the trailer for M6NTHS, an empathic film about an animal in captivity, longing for the outside. 

An animal who shares with us the ability to dream, who is intelligent, curious, social and sensitive, and in whom we can clearly recognize a soul.  An animal who can live up to ten years in the wild but only six months under our care.
It's easy to point at others; farmers /supermarkets/ politicians; but our desires as 'consumans' to get a lot for a little are responsible for this industry; would we make the same choices if we could look the piglet in the eye? - Eline Helena Schellekens, director

Girl (Daughter of Scotland)

A female empowerment anthem, celebrating Scottish women and promoting gender equality - Sharon Martin

A Gude Cause Maks A Strong Erm

'A Gude Cause Maks A Strong Erm' is a short animated film telling the story of the Orcadian Woman’s Suffrage Society.

Campaigning for women to have the right to vote took place from the latter half of the 19th Century up to the start of the First World War. Orcadian suffragists [including Dr Mary McNeill] were part of that activism.

Researched and scripted by Fiona Grahame, the hand-painted animation by Martin Laird is stylised to make some reference to the world of 20th century art. The artist Stanley Cursiter was associated with the Orcadian Woman's Suffrage Society, having designed its banner and married [the violinist] Phyllis Eda Hourston, one of its members. The design of characters and locations was derived from period photos.

Narration was provided by Kim Foden, with a moving musical score by James Watson.

The animation was made possible with an award from the Scottish Government’s Centenary Fund which supported projects celebrating 100 years of some women gaining the right to vote. -The Orkney News

Up Helly Aa season: Bressay

Meet Zoe and Leanna, who went to see and take part in the procession and burning at the Bressay Up Helly Aa 2019, here in Shetland. The Bressay Up Helly Aa is different from many of our other fire festivals (we have 12 in total) as torch bearers are allowed on a first come-first served basis, so the procession is open to anyone to take part in.

Up Helly Aa is an important time in our year, with 12 fire festivals held annually between January and March. They involve all of the communities here in Shetland and are a real testament to how everyone pulls together and volunteers, year on year, to make it happen. -
Promote Shetland

Portrait of a Place: Away With the Land

Filmmaker and photographer Joya Berrow journeys to the far reaches of Scotland for her latest film, to explore the practice of Crofting—a small-scale agricultural technique based around working communities who share and farm their land in common.
Guided by local crofter Donald John Macinnes, Berrow explores the extraordinary and rugged landscape that has been farmed by the crofters since the nineteenth century. The filmmaker’s story recognises the hardship and beauty that is integral to this existence , while also revealing its imminent disappearance as younger generations turn away from this way of life. - NOWNESS


This specially commissioned film brings together the worlds of synth pop and classical music to create an aural and visual feast for the first transmission on the new BBC Scotland channel.
A unique collaboration between Chvrches and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the performance celebrates modern Scotland featuring living portraits of people and images from across the country.

The track builds both musically and visually to represent the constant evolution of Scotland’s society and cultural landscape. This new arrangement of Chvrches’ hit track Miracle was created by the band members Iain Cook, Martin Doherty and Lauren Mayberry with arranger and conductor Paul Campbell
. - BBC Scotland

Wish the new BBC channel well – and remember always to be for things, not against them

A Beacon - Scotland Confronts Climate Change

Even as some nations refuse to take responsibility for a changing climate, Scotland stands out as a beacon. The nation has put world-leading targets for reducing carbon emissions into law and with every success, continue to set the bar higher. We sat down with Drew Hendry, Member of Parliament [for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch & Strathspey], and Keith Masson, Climate Change Officer [Highland Council], to better understand the Scottish perspective, what’s at stake, and how the country is taking action. - Life in Postcards

'We need to stand up': The Scottish kids taking part in historic global school strikes
Push for a strong Scottish Climate Change Act
Fight for Scotland's Nature
Adaptation Scotland

Earth Hour 30 March 2019 8.30 pm local time

the vulnerable capercaillie

The largest grouse species in the world, at home in our native pine forests, the UK’s capercaillie population has fallen from around 20,000 birds in the 1970s to just over 1,000 birds today. As the Cairngorms National Park is their last remaining stronghold the long-term future of this vulnerable species now rests very much in the hands of the people who live, work and play alongside it. -  The Cairngorms Capercaillie Project

The Bridge Over the Atlantic*

They took our birlinn, stem and stern-posts
High as a Venetian gondola’s, and up-turned it.
Every tide in the bladder-wracked sea-tongue its keel

Bridged, swam the eel-current
Races that tracked South and North
Into and out of the Atlantic. And they
Docked our tongues, every man’s that dared
Give out a taste of his father’s banter,
Effortless sound-shapes an islander’s born to.

One soul this end of the keel-bridge, one the other;
Veritable shape-shifters we were, minds gone
Evasive as mist with keeping speech-thoughts in curb,
Raking the past for the fuelling of anger.

Those that got out, the salmon-stubborn, ran
Hard-headed on a spring ebb out to sea;
Everything given up but nothing given over.

And from Mull and Seil, Caithness and Ireland,
Sweden and Italy
The disinherited massed in a marvellous Sargasso;
Language, labour, dance of the old worlds gathered
And ransacked the past for ways of living
New.  New? For our first night we took a skin canoe,
Tipped its fur-clad family into Scajaquada Creek, then
Inverted it. We wound their heathen souls in a keening
Caillach’s plaid of consonants and vowels .

Ian Crockatt

*The 18th century bridge over tidal Clachan Sound, 12 miles south west of Oban, links Seil island to the mainland. It has long been known as The Bridge Over the Atlantic. After Culloden, when the English outlawed the wearing of tartan and speaking in the Gaelic language, those living on Seil island did both at home, but, legend has it, changed out of their kilts into trews in the inn by the bridge before crossing over to the mainland.

 Scajaquada Creek is one of New York's many rivers. - Salix Publications

Final Ascent: The Legend of Hamish MacInnes

When the memories of a life are lost in the snow, a final challenge remains. The toughest climb of all: to conquer the mind and rescue the man. - FinalAscentFilm

If We Didn’t Have All That

The Touring Network presents a mini film capturing the story behind a network of people in the Highlands and Islands who, over the past 20 years or more have championed professional live performances touring to their communities. In the first of its kind, this is a beautifully shot film that delves into the stories, humour and impact of rural touring. It features tales of Michael Marra, The Naked Rambler and more. - The Touring Network

The Pumpkin / Creag Meagaidh

What motivates a Scottish winter mountaineer and what are the challenges and rewards? Pumpkin follows Neill Busby and Bob Licznerski on a perfect winters day on Creag Meagaidh to climb the 300m route The Pumpkin graded V,4. - Richard Redpath

Aald Boat

Doo minds dee, whan da wind stöd wast,
I’d lay twa linns, and rin dee doon,
An tak a stane, an step dy mast,
An had dy head fir oot da soon’.

We’d land is doon by Heljer Gjo,
An bare tak time ta mak dee fast,
Saw weel kent we foo aa da voe
Wis scanned whan winds held fae da wast.

Aald boat, doo’s i’dy last noost noo,
Da waandrin sea nae mair doo’ll ken,
Nae mair sall I, dy capten, crew,
Set up dy aald broon sail agen.

Bit tho, fir is, oot ower da voe,
Nae lingrin, lanesome look is cast
Saft rins da sea in Heljer Gjo,
And saft da wind blaas fae da wast.

Jack Peterson, from Streets and Starlight

Community land stories: Sally Reynolds

Sally is the Development Officer for Urras Oighreachd Charlabaigh (Carloway Estate Trust) and a resident of Urras Oighreachd Ghabhsainn (Galson Estate Trust) - Community Land Scotland

Up Helly Aa season: Uyeasound

The fifth of Shetland's twelve annual Fire Festivals. Uyeasound Up Helly Aa is held each year on the most northerly island in the UK - Unst.

Song of the Mainland

I’ll sing you a song of the mainland
Where the lights are always shining
Where the wind stays off the whiskey
And the bread is factory-rising. 

We’ll go no more to the islands
We’ll go no more to the sea
For the lighthouses are empty
There’s nothing there for me. 

And when we get to the mainland
We’ll give our shoes a shining
And run for the bars and dance halls
Till the sun is church-spire rising.

We’ll think no more of the islands
We’ll yearn no more for sea
For the lighthouses are empty
And have no need of me. 

I’ll sing you a song from the mainland
With the lights above me shining
The wind still burns like whiskey
Yes, the bread is factory-rising. 

O send me news from the islands
What’s churning, out at sea?
The lighthouses are empty
But do they think of me? 

I’ll sing you a song of the islands
As the streetlights dull their shining
Of the darkest stretch of darkness
And its one light, tower-rising. 

O take me back to the islands
O take me back to sea
For the mainland’s bright and gleaming
But what is here for me?

Miriam Nash, from All the Prayers in the House 

Knees Up

As the second single from their acclaimed album Frenzy of the Meeting, ‘Knees Up’ celebrates the rewards of travelling new roads as well as the importance of revisiting the old ones. It features an instrumental composed by Calum MacCrimmon entitled ‘Knees Up in Hanoi’ alongside a song delivered by Megan (Dòchas Glan Na Fàire) which was a co-write between Calum and Megan’s brother, Ewen Henderson. The track is accompanied by a video which was made in collaboration with Caledonian MacBrayne and Andy McCandlish (This Way Up Films). It follows the journey of a father and son cycling through the Hebrides. - Breabach

NATION: Norway - the twin nation

The Norway film tells the story of Scotland’s twin nation. We have the same population, share the oil, gas and fishing resources of the North Sea and have similar geography. But over the last 200 years Norway has withdrawn from a Union with first Denmark and then Sweden and has invested its oil wealth wisely while Margaret Thatcher squandered ours.

This much we already know. But did you know Norwegians have chosen to continue paying some of the highest personal taxes in the world to stabilise their oil-based economy – using the oil fund only to top up budgets not underpin them? Did you know hydro was the first big energy revolution, possible because Norway had no feudal landowners blocking the development of free energy for all? And – perhaps most importantly – did you know the widespread ownership of land in the 19th century meant Norway created one of the world’s widest electorates and therefore one of its most egalitarian parliaments?

These democratic achievements underpin Norway’s success every bit as much as independence and raise hopes and tough questions about Scotland’s future. Can we hope to use renewables to match the incredible achievements of our twin nation? - Phantom Power Films

NATION: Iceland - the extreme nation

The second in a series of films with Lesley Riddoch exploring Scotland's inspiring northern European neighbours and what we can learn.
Despite being a sub-arctic island pulsating with potentially catastrophic volcanoes, Iceland's population (334,000 or Aberdeen and Dundee combined) has managed to become one of the most successful societies on earth.

To understand Icelander's attitude to risk and creating a positive from the bleakest situation means understanding the volcanic landscape that has shaped this nation and its fortunes. We look at how Iceland has harnessed the power beneath their feet, created a successful media industry by exploiting its lunar setting, how the land has shaped the island's politics and more.

The seismic global crash (and subsequent volcanic explosion) could have brought Iceland to its knees but, in fact, regenerated Iceland - empowering it to become a globally recognised, more sustainable, politically engaged nation with a future that looks brighter than ever. Iceland certainly puts any doubts about Scotland's huge potential in perspective as the UK and Europe's political tectonic plates continue to shift. - Phantom Power Films

in memory of Andy Nisbet and Steve Perry

Andy Nisbet is renowned in the world of Scottish winter climbing having set an incredible 1,000 new routes in the winter months. Away from his beloved Scotland he has been on various expeditions to the greater ranges including on Everest, with recent years being spent climbing in Norway and India. He has been a member of the Scottish Mountaineering Club (SMC) since 1977 and has taken the position of President in 2012. To gain insight into Andy's climbing career and his role in the SMC I took the opportunity to interview him. - Myrddyn Phillips, 2015
The climbing community mourns the huge loss of Andy Nisbet and Steve Perry who died in an accident on Scotland's most northerly Munro. Our condolences to their family and friends.

NATION: Faroe Islands - the connected nation

The first in a series of films with Lesley Riddoch exploring Scotland's inspiring northern European neighbours and what we can learn.

Despite being a remote cluster of islands with population of just 50 thousand people (1% of Scots pop.), the Faroe Islands certainly don't think small. The Faroes took on global giant Google to protect their language and identity and have also created the world's fastest mobile broadband (a reserved issue in Scotland). The key factor in these success stories has been the Faroes Parliament: without doubt, the world's most powerful devolved parliament. This wee nation relies heavily on fish which represents around 95% of exports but life in the Faroes is changing. A new generation, enthused by a proximity to political power, are shaping these traditionally conservative islands into progressive society that more and more want to live in. The Faroes is also finding itself at the centre of things as the Arctic presents new opportunities. The Faroese community connects in all kinds of ways - through tunnels that join the separate islands, by air to the rest of the world with its own national airline and is reconnecting with nature to create world-class food. There's a lot to reflect upon about the future of the Faroes and Scotland but the ultimate connection is clear: with power comes the confidence to build a better nation. - Phantom Power Films

Jura: the Island, the People

What is it like living on a small Scottish Island? SMTV visited Jura and talked to some of the locals to get a perspective on the realities of life on an island known for producing great whisky and being the one time home of George Orwell.   Watch part 2 here

Collecting the Present: Land Reform

What have a drum, a sign and a door knocker got to do with land ownership in Scotland?

All is revealed in the next film in our Collecting the Present series, which explores objects that document community buyouts in the islands of Eigg and Ulva.

Land ownership has been a contested issue in Scotland for centuries. Community buyouts aim to redistribute Scotland’s land by putting it in the hands of the people who live and work in the local area.

Discover more about the unusual objects we've collected to tell this story in our new film.

Collecting the Present explores how our collection reflects changes in Scottish identity and the way the past is understood.
- National Museums Scotland

swimming for charity

Highland Open Water Swim is the brainchild of outdoor enthusiast Jeff Forrester.
We started in 2016 to enjoy the beautiful environment that we are lucky to live close to in the Highlands of Scotland, while at the same time raising funds towards Children with Cancer UK.
The original idea only involved a few events, but numbers just kept increasing and by the time we organised our last swim in the first year - across the Sound of Mull - there were more than 100 crazy people in the water, including swimmers and safety team.  - Highland Open Water Swim

To learn about this year's swims, please visit the HOWS website and video channel.

This year, Highland Open Water Swim is raising money for The Brain Tumour Charity

Day One


Betty Mouat's Sang

Betty Mouat’s nineteenth century story is an amazing one of surviving a foiled sailing trip from Grutness in the south of Shetland to the capital town of Lerwick where she planned to sell her knitwear. Betty’s boat, the Columbine, was caught in a storm and the crew disappeared overboard but Betty survived nine days of drifting alone before running aground on the island of Lepsøy in Norway. Whilst recuperating there and with relatives in Edinburgh, news of Betty’s story spread via the national press and Queen Victoria heard about Betty’s bravery, honouring her survival with a gift of money. The 60-year-old eventually returned home to her crofting life in Shetland after generating quite a stir worldwide, inspiring William McGonagall to write a poem about her misadventure. You can still connect with Betty via her Camping Böd home in Scatness. - Claire White

I mind it joost lik yesterday
Da saat spray is still veeve
We lippened blashy wadder
But no da sea to heave
An bal wis fae ee aert tae next
In 1886
Dan nor-aest on an uncan coorse
Driftin fae Scatness

Driftin, we’re aye driftin
We fin meids back an fore
An if göd fortune favours wis
We land apo da shore

Athin no time I wis mesel
Columbine’s sol lodd
As skipper, mate an deckhand
Were aa taen overboard
Nine days, eight nichts, me löf-alenn
No blinndin on da gaet
Twa biscuit an a jar o mylk
Me only faerdie-maet

Da makkin I’d taen nort tae sell
I traded in for rope
Eence nimble fingers noo I used
Ta hadd my body up
Til in a gale I ran agrund
On Norway’s Lepsøy Isle
An winnin safely back ashore
Felt lik me langest mile

In Norway first I kyuckered up
Dan Edinburgh for care
Whaar wimmen cam tae hear me tale
An tak a strand o hair
Dan tree weeks on I med for hom
Dis time apo da Clair
Da croods I’d come tae lippen noo
Were shön ta be nae mair

For back I göd tae work da laand
Da monarch’s twenty pound
Da only mindin o me vaege
An how I ran agrund
Tinkin noo at ninety two
Back thirty year fae syne
Life’s rod his mony twists an turns
Da journey, it is dine

Fort Misery

During Scotland's Year of Young People in 2018, we teamed up with the Highland Youth Arts Hub (HYAH) once again. We gave two groups of young people free reign at Fort George and Urquhart Castle, and let them interpret the sites however they wanted. With the help of a handful of artists, here's the full performance created by the group based at Fort George! - Historic Environment Scotland

Holocaust Memorial Day - Scotland


Hatred does not create monsters. Monsters are extraordinary. They instantly stand out from the crowd. You can see them a mile off and they are very rare. What hatred does is not to create monsters but to allow ordinary men and women to commit terrible acts as if they were the most mundane quotidian of tasks, just loading goods onto a train.
...let there be no room here or anywhere else in political life for hatred and let that for us be the lesson of the Holocaust.
excerpts from the second speaker Adam Tompkins MSP, during Scottish Parliament Members' Business: Remembering the Holocaust

Holocaust Memorial Day Trust
Shocking levels of denial remain


A Burn

Beluga Lagoon

Mr Cairngorms

I have travelled the globe widely ... but I still think the Cairngorms are the most wonderful place on earth. - Dr Adam Watson (1930 - 2019)

on mountain hares
on snow

'a protalus rampart'

'the world is going to need more Adam Watsons'

The Immortal Memory

(other video translations here)
On 25 January every year, Scots and Scots-at-heart come together to celebrate the life and works of our national poet, Robert Burns.

The Wounded Hare

OneKind is delighted to have teamed up with visual artist and vegan/animal rights activist Kate Louise Powell to offer a OneKind exclusive digital print.
Specially designed for OneKind, Kate has created this thought provoking hare artwork, inspired by Robert Burns’s The Wounded Hare and our own Mountain Hare campaign.
The print contains the first two verses of Burns’s famous poem, with the aim of creating awareness and celebrating Burns’s empathy towards the hare.

Chasing the Sublime

'to transform from ordinary to briefly extraordinary' - Kate Rew

a film by Amanda Bluglass

Women in Adventure
the Outdoor Swimming Society
Loch Hourn

Wolf Island

I believe that the people who live and work here are best placed to run the island. All we are asking for is the chance to shape our own future, and provide opportunities for our children and generations to come. Community ownership offers us a say in that future. And that is what makes it essential. - Rebecca Munro, Ulva resident.

the community of Ulva and north west Mull took over ownership of the island of Ulva in 2018.


Runrig (feat. Julie Fowlis)

festival of islands

Short video intoduction to my time as the Artist in Residence at the splendid ØY Festival based on the island of Papa Westray in Orkney. - Watercolour Music

The Wild in Me: Dave Cuthbertson, mountain photographer

Renowned climber, photographer and mountain guide Dave 'Cubby' Cuthbertson explores Steall Gorge and the slopes of Ben Nevis as he reflects on a life shaped by the mountains.

Up Hellly Aa season: Scalloway

Get close to the fiery action at the 2019 Scalloway Fire Festival, and hear how Maurice Jamieson feels to be the Guizer Jarl, Thorbjorn Hrollaugsson.

Held on the second Friday of January each year, this is the first of Shetland's 12 fire festivals and Up Helly Aa's.

Up Helly Aa is a superb spectacle, a celebration of Shetland history, and a triumphant demonstration of islanders' skills, spirit and community. It takes several thousand people 364 days to organise. Much of the preparation is in strictest secrecy. The biggest secret of all is what the head of the festival, the 'Guizer Jarl', will wear and which character from the Norse Sagas he'll represent in each of the 12 Shetland fire festivals held between January and March each year.
What the Helly Aa? (Your guide to Shetland's Up Helly Aa fire festivals)
Fire in Winter

When The Shouting Is Over

When the race is run and the shouting is all over / Come on home.’   

Kris Drever, from If Wishes Were Horses

An Lanntair - Supporting Artists

This short film follows the progress of musician Calum Macleod (Mother Night), a visual artist (Margaret Ferguson), and a jewellery maker (Jordane Symington of Islewear) as they receive help from the artist support scheme run by An Lanntair Art centre in the Outer Hebrides.

Filmed by Ruaraidh Urpeth, the scheme is funded by the The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Emergents, An Lanntair and managed by Hebrides Contemporary Arts /
Alex Boyd.
Find out more at here

Photographing the Orkney Islands after a Storm

An unexpected trip back to Orkney, Scotland. Taking photographs in the middle of winter after a hurricane. I got one day of eerie calm, which may have been the eye of the storm, as i negotiated a storm of my very own at the same time. - Ewan Dunsmuir

Crònan na Caillich / the old woman's lullaby

The 3rd 'movement' of a traditional Highland bagpipe pibroch (piobearachd) air. Lyrics are by the late Angus MacPhee of Skye from his book "The Crunluath Collection". Filmed on the Isle of Canna in the Inner Hebrides - Fiona J Mackenzie

Sheòl an Iolaire

Sheòl an Iolaire/The Iolaire Sailed is an art installation designed by Torcuil Crichton and Malcolm Maclean to mark the centenary of the Iolaire tragedy.

The full-scale reproduction of the ship, with the hull marked out with 280 posts for each man aboard, is uncovered at low tide and illuminated at high tide.

As the Women Lay Dreaming

It affected every member of the community and cast a ghastly shadow over whole communities. Many of those affected could not move on with their lives – such was the impact of so many losses on such a sparsely populated part of Scotland. - The Press and Journal

If you can frame a narrative around your grief, if you can express it, you're half way toward healing.    Donald S Murray

'sea of grief'

Dìleab: A’ Cuimhneachadh Tubaist na h-Iolaire

Chaidh seo a chlàradh aig Ionad Spòrs Leòdhais air Dihaoine 14 Dùbhlachd 2018. Chìthear sgoilearan Àrd-sgoil MhicNeacail le taic bhon choimhearsnachd agus còisirean bho air feadh Leòdhas agus na Hearadh agus iad a’ comharrachadh ceud blìadhna on a thachair tubaist na h-Iolaire. Oidhche air leth agus Dìleab phrìseil.

This video was recorded at Ionad Spòrs Leòdhais on Friday the 14th of December 2018. Hosted by the Nicolson Institute with support from community musicians and choirs from Lewis and Harris. A truly special evening in which the centenary of the Iolaire tragedy was commemorated.

Information on New Year Iolaire Centenary Commemoration Events
National commemorative service recalls Iolaire disaster
Service to remember the lost at the Iolaire memorial