Glassford a Landscape of Love & Worship
As part of his creative residency at Glassford, Ewan Allinson BA (Oxon) MA will give an illustrated talk, offering his take on the special character of the village and its surroundings. Ewan has immersed himself in this landscape’s nooks and crannies, walking its right of ways and researching into its history and folklore.
From Ewan’s own perspective in environmental philosophy, it is the history of worship in this landscape that comes to the fore. The Covenanter story is uppermost. Whether dodging dragoons or holding conventicles, the 17th century locals would have been intimate with this whole landscape as both a haven and a place of worship. Field preaching may have been a last resort but the very fact of outdoor worship suggests a relationship to nature and place that we can all relate to today. Glassford’s Druid and Quaker associations reinforce this atmosphere of outdoor spirituality.
The three standing stones on Tapped Hill provide the druid connection, the link between Landscape, Love and Worship. The archaeological story of the stones is not yet established but the sacred nature of the site was clear to James Struthers and his wife Julia Fraser, buried there side by side, along with their daughter and four dogs. The Struthers family were residents of Avonholm throughout the 19th Century. Their magnificent house stands alone in a glorious loop of the River Avon, looking up to where the stones stand amongst the yews. Julia was a Herefordshire lass for whom Avonholm would surely have been a home from home. Her poems capture her profound attachment to this place. Is it possible that James and Julia embraced the 19th century Romantic fashion for all-things-Druid and fashioned a mythological landscape of home?
After his 30 minute presentation, Ewan and the team are keen to hear from you about your experiences in the landscape around Glassford, about places that have a particularly strong personal association. Whether the association is romantic, sacred, of a sense of belonging, or even of something supernatural, it would be great to hear your stories and even create a map Glassford’s living heritage of love and worship. Maps, paper and pens will be available.
Ewan Allinson is undertaking a creative residency in Glassford as part of the new Make Your Way project which aims to encourage local people to walk and cycle more whilst exploring the rich heritage of their local area. The project is being deliver by icecream architecture, alongside transport consultants SYSTRA on behalf of the Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership and is focussed on the communities of Larkhall, Lanark, Carluke, Stonehouse and Glassford. The project will culminate in May 2017 with the production of a series of new physical and digital maps as well as artwork installations along these newly defined routes.
Find out more at: www.clydeandavonvalley.org
If you would like to get involved in any of the events, or have information you would like to share about your area then get in touch with the Make Your Way team via [email protected]