Friday
Jun092017

KAILYARD JOURNAL

INTRODUCTION 

In the 19th century, a group of settlers inhabited the lower slopes of Bennachie.  From their toil and sweat they built simple thatched cottages and turned rocky heather moor into arable fields surrounded by substantial stone dykes, all with materials from the hillside.  The settlers became known as the “Bennachie Colonists”.  The ruins of these crofts are still visible today and one in particular, known as Shepherds Lodge, still shows evidence of a kitchen garden or “Kailyard”.  To celebrate 2017 as the year of History Heritage and Archaeology, the Heritage Lottery Fund awarded the Bailies of Bennachie/Bennachie Landscapes Project a grant to recreate this kailyard to demonstrate how the land was used in the past and to provide opportunities for further involving community groups in the Bennachie Colony.

At the end of 2016 the Bennachie Landscapes Project (BLP) appointed a sub-group to guide this project through.  The following entries are a diary of how the volunteers involved are approaching this task.  As 2017 progresses entries of their progress are being logged which highlights their achievements, problems, mistakes, and personal enjoyment.

 

 

A Note to all Volunteers: 

After each event there will be a short write up by the Kailyard Sub-Group.  Any comments from those helping are welcome.  We would love to hear about your experience - whether it is about the job you were doing, what the weather was like, any observations such as wildlife, or perhaps how you felt about the site and its connection with the Colonists.  

 

Friday
Jun092017

A GARDEN JOURNAL 2017 

Recreating a Scottish 19th Century Kailyard
On the foothills of Bennachie

December 2016

Fantastic news – we have been successful in our bid for a grant to help with the recreation of the kailyard at Shepherd’s Lodge colony site.  Once the jubilation ceased the question we were all asking was “Where to begin?”    The decision was made to have a small sub-group of volunteers with a “chivvy” to help move things along.  The Kailyard Sub-Group (KSG) was accordingly set up and ready to go.   A flutter of trepidation could be sensed!   Kailyard Sub-Group (KSG)

Friday
Jun092017

12 January 2017

Email circulated amongst KSG members suggesting ways forward and asking for comments/ideas ready for discussion at the next Bennachie Landscapes Project (BLP) meeting.  Meanwhile volunteers busy researching what might have been grown in the Colonists’ kailyards.  All research being posted on our Google Drive for all BLP members to view.  (KSG)

Friday
Jun092017

14 February 2017  (BLP Meeting)

At this meeting we (KSG) related our proposals following an analysis of the research that had taken place.   It was considered more viable to start with some of the easier to grow soft fruits from the 1800s.  One of the issues we have is aftercare of the site.  Shepherds Lodge is someway away from the car park for most of us to get to, so plants that will not require so much attention were considered best.  The choice therefore resulted in gooseberries, currants (red/white and black) and raspberries.  A new member joined the Sub-Group who is particularly interested in herbs and so the suggestion was to possibly include some.  Research will be needed first though.  (KSG)

 

Friday
Jun092017

2nd March 2017

Kailyard Sub-Group sent out update following above results from meeting and research undertaken since.  This also included a plan of action and timetable.  Once comments received and updated an email will be sent to all BLP members for information and volunteers.  Work can now begin in earnest!