Friday 19th January 2018,
Frontiers Magazine

Browsing the "Countryside" Category

The Green Lane at flood time

The January Man

My father, John Somerville, was sent to the Royal Naval College at Dartmouth at the age of 13, and joined the Royal Navy when he was 17 years old,” writes Christopher Somerville in the introduction to his book The January Man. “He served in a destroyer in the Mediterranean through some of the worst and [...]

August 30, 2017 Christopher Somerville Countryside Comments Off

Little flower of the north

You’ll know it when you see it, with its delicate mauve petals and yellow centre, its short stalk rising from the little rosette of green leaves. It’s a little distance back from the sea-cliffs, tucked down in the transition zone between maritime heath and the grassy sward with sea pinks that lies behind. It occurs [...]

July 14, 2016 Howie Firth Countryside Comments Off

North Ronaldsay’s woolmill

North Ronaldsay sheep are an ancient breed, part of the family of Northern European short-tailed sheep. Other members include the Soay sheep and the Iceland sheep and other native breeds spread across the north from the Baltic to the North Atlantic. The sheep are small and hardy, with most of the males – and also [...]

August 20, 2015 Jane Donnelly Countryside Comments Off

Orkney trees – a labour of love

Planting trees is an Orcadian labour of love. The salt winds of autumn are particularly destructive, and in a poor year they can blacken foliage and tear off the leaves before the various nutrients have been absorbed into the rest of the plant. Shelter is thus important, and you can see from the shapes of [...]

March 21, 2015 Howie Firth Countryside Comments Off

Cromarty and Hugh Miller

When I walked down the main street of Cromarty on a sunny August day at 1.15, I saw only two people. Save for the cry of seagulls, there was not a sound. Then, in the empty street, I heard the tinkle of knives on plates through an open window. I thought perhaps that later on [...]

March 9, 2015 T. Ratcliffe Barnett Countryside Comments Off

Exploring Hoy

Every Friday I would run from school and straight onto the M.V. Graemsay that would take me to the island of Hoy: my muddy childhood paradise. My family had a cottage on the island that sat high up on a hill. It was heated by peat that my Dad had dug up and dried earlier [...]

July 3, 2013 Rose Matheson Countryside Comments Off

Sheep and genes, wool and weaving

A hot day, and sheep lie panting in the shade, each covered in an insulating blanket of wool. Does a ewe remember last year’s clipping, and the lightness of being? Does she long for the same to happen again? Who knows what goes on inside a sheep’s head. Wool is a fascinating natural material, a [...]

July 2, 2013 Ann Lingard Countryside Comments Off

Knockando Woolmill

The mill sits nestled in a flat-bottomed valley edged along one side by the Knockando Burn, and on the other by a steep tree-clad incline. The landscape clings to frost and snow during winter, untroubled by wind. In summer long sunny days illuminate a rare treasure, a remote rural district mill that for well over [...]

June 30, 2013 Elidh Myrvang Brown Countryside 0
Kathleen Dinsdale's photo

A Walk to the Hamars

“My, that’s a wintry soond,” a visitor remarked as the gale came snarling around the end of the house, one evening shortly after midsummer. The turn of the days came imperceptibly, bringing no fine weather, and the midnight sun made its small circling of the North obscured in heavy cloud; the book I took out [...]

June 26, 2013 Bessie Skea Countryside 0

Straw bale structures for Orkney

‘Structures’ means anything above ground which is not actually in contact with the sea or a burn. In other words: houses, garages, barns, studios, medical centres, commercial and light industrial premises and so on – anything up to 2½ storeys high. Frequently asked questions What about fire? A straw bale structure is more resistant to [...]

June 26, 2013 Nick Morrison Countryside Comments Off