Rig and Furrow, Rouken Glen Park, Glasgow, Scotland

This morning I was enticed out by a combination of blue skies, frost covered ground and strong winter sunlight.

Target was Rouken Glen Park, now a public recreation area with golf course but with a long history of agriculture and industrial activity.

The low sunlight at this time of year highlights historic landforms. The parallel strips illustrated in the centre of the above image probably relate to an early form of agriculture known as ‘rig and furrow’ whereby parcels of land were allocated to particular families for purpose of growing crops. The land was ploughed with oxen or horses in such a way that the soil tended to accrue in the centre of each plot. This form of land use may have been active until the 1700s. There are many other examples of rig and furrow in Rouken Glen.

Agriculture was introduced to the British Isles somewhere around the 5th millennium BC and resulted in a landscape altered for cultivation and animal pasture.Rig and furrow constitutes part of Scotland’s heritage and provides an insight into tillage practices and socio-economic arrangements.

Interestingly, there is a little known prehistoric site just five minutes walk from the above rig and furrow known as ‘cup and ring’ markings on a rock which probably dates back about 5000 years to the Neolithic period and thus points to the antiquity of human activity at Rouken Glen.

Cup and Ring markings at Rouken Glen.

Below are provided a selection of images, also taken today, with emphasis on the aesthetic.

Reflections at waterfall

Winter sunlight bursting through the trees.

Long winter shadows.

Reflections in winter sun.

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