Tuesday, 17 May 2011

A date with Creative Scotland

SEPA are in a strop because they have no record of my pumping water up for 17 years from the Nunnerie Burn to the house I live in. This is despite being a rate payer for all that time and regularly having the water tested. Heigh ho. Their attention was drawn by major waterworks - silt traps, baffles, filters etc - courtesy of SSER, made necessary last week (to enable me to continue to live there and for us to go on making our Zacharry's drinks and essential oil) now that the trees have gone from the hill behind to make way for the Clyde windfarm, the biggest on land in Europe. I am reading My Life So Far by Denis Foreman, who grew up in Craigielands, a big house near Moffat, between the wars. His memoir reminds the reader how change is part of all our lives, SEPA please note. One of the aspects of Ian Edwards (RBGE) observations as we walked round Corehead last week that most delighted me was that it is no good trying to 're-create' landscape. We have to live in the present with an eye to the future if we are to survive and do ourselves and the natural world justice. People sometimes wonder why my face goes purple at the mention of the words 'Forest Commission'. Well, it's not because they planted lots of Sitka spruce trees. It's because they utterly failed to explain why. (For that, read my little book Sitka Spruce published by Sage and available now only by contacting me). It is no secret that I support the selling off of these forests, planted as a strategic resource after The Great War and in ever-increasing numbers after WWII because in both world wars our country risked losing the battle for want of soft wood. We didn't need oaks, elms, beeches, rowans, birches,alders,yew trees or chestnuts. It was conifers - and Sitka spruce is the one that grows best here in these temperate climes. Access to woodlands will not be affected because of our right to roam, and in my view private landowners such as myself are better custodians of the land than a massive bureaucracy.My BT mobile crashed on Sat so I have had the interesting experience of living without it now for three days, the fourth being today (Tues May 17). I was panic-stricken at first, and bereft. Now, on Day Four, I am utterly accustomed to not being 'in touch' with the whole world all the time everywhere I go. It is something of a relief, in fact. Off shortly for a meeting with Creative Scotland to discuss the potential of Crookedstane Rig as a location for film makers. Oh, and someone called Nathaniel Moffat popped up on Facebook this morning, so I hope to recruit him as a member of our Book Events. Pip pip.

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