Scottish Tour Guide's Blog

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Browsing Posts in Perthshire

This evening I am posting a few images taken during a brief visit yesterday to Dunkeld. This is a very popular small town, very centrally situated inside the Highland Line on the banks of the River Tay. The scenery is stunning and the atmosphere full of history.

The name Dunkeld means ‘Fort of the Caledonians’.

Around AD 700 followers of St. Columba founded a monastery at Dunkeld. In 878 AD the bones of St Columba were moved to Dunkeld from Iona for safety and remained there until 1560. The Cathedral, which stands on the site of the former monastery, was started in AD 1318 and was completed in 1448. During the Reformation the Cathedral was largely destroyed but partially re-roofed in 1600 when it became a parish church. In a battle following that at nearby Killiecrankie in 1689 most of the town was burned during the conflict between Jacobite and Government forces.

The Dukes of Atholl rebuilt Dunkeld in the 19th century with further restoration work carried out by the National Trust and the County Council since 1950.

Perthshire is a garden county-and my favourite!. The scenery ranges form luxuriant valleys to high craggy peaks and is a mecca for people who love the outdoors. Nearby are faculties for white water rafting, hillwalking, bird watching, fishing, golfing and stalking. Other places of interest include castles, lochs, historic monuments, battlefields, theatre, Beatrix Potter sites and lots of history.

Most of the above background information was obtained from a brochure produced by The Pend B&B

The following two images are of the Square including the Atholl Fountain

River Tay looking upstream from Dunkeld

River Tay looking downstream towards Birnam

Taybank pub-well renowned as a centre for traditional Scottish music.

View of Bridge Street with its many and varied shops.

Dunkeld’s central location makes it ideal as a base for touring Scotland.

Read more on Visit Dunkeld Scotland…

This evening, I am presenting an image of a very unusual roadside memorial cum shrine to Maggie Wall “burnt here 1657 as a witch”.

This stone monument is located about 1 mile west of the village of Dunning.

It is assumed that Maggie Wall was one of the unfortunate casualties of 17th century witch-hunts. However, despite diligent record keeping at the time , there is no record of any trial, conviction or sentence relating to a Maggie Wall . Moreover, Christian themed memorials to witches are extremely unusual. Clearly, therefore, the monument is something of a conundrum. Another dimension is the fact that the stonework is of 19th century origin ( which may have replaced an earlier one). So, there is something here for the historical detective!

Read more on Maggie Wall Tour Dunning Perthshire…

This evening I am presenting images from my recent visit to the village of Forteviot. Prime purpose of the visit was to attend a talk from archaeologists on work in progress on excavations of this historic site which was the capital ( or centre of power) of Scotland in the mid 9th century. What is now a small and quite village was in past millennia a major population and possibly ritual centre spanning the neolithic to the post medieval. There is evidence to suggest that Forteviot was an ecclesiastical centre in Pictish times and may have been the premier ritual complex in the East of Scotland. The church, which has bell dating from the 10th century, is probably built on the site of a much earlier church.

The current village may be located on the site of a Pictish Palace where Kenneth McAlpine lived and died AD 842/3-AD858.

The archaeologists clearly have a major task over the next 10 years and will use latest technology including crop mark analysis to learn how the village evolved.

Here is a spectacular double rainbow

Evening view from the village
I think this is a Rowan tree.
Plaque in centre of village. This dates from the 1920s and underscores the belief of a connection with Kenneth McApline.

Forteviot Church

Overall, Forteviot is well worth a visit, which should be conducted in conjunction with a visit to nearby Dunning.

Read more on Tour Forteviot Perthshire…