Monday, 12 December 2016

Plans lodged to expand Stonehaven’s most historic building

A planning application has been lodged to Aberdeenshire Council for a significant expansion of the Tolbooth Museum on Stonehaven Harbour.
The Stonehaven Tolbooth Association (STA) which runs the facility hope the plans will cement it as an “iconic” building.
The 16th-century site is currently home to a local history museum on the ground floor and The Tolbooth Seafood Restaurant on the first floor.
The proposals are for a two-storey extension to the Tolbooth, which will allow it to house further exhibition space, a function room or cafe – or a combination of all three.
Last night the STA said it hopes the application for planning permission and listed building consent would allow them to tackle the “serious issue” of overcrowding facing the museum.
The extension to the Tolbooth would be built into the courtyard section of the site.
Under the plans the ground floor will be reconfigured to give access through a different doorway.
A new reception and information area would be formed, along with a staff canteen and public toilets. The current display areas would also be realigned.
Last night a spokesman for the STA said visitor numbers had surged from 9,000 a year prior to 2011 to 22,000 in the past two years.
He added it “has been the most frequented free attraction operating under Aberdeenshire Council’s museum service umbrella”.
He also said the proposals “would enable the museum to expand but at the same time retain the ambiance of the community hub which we have fostered over the last five years”.
The spokesman added: “This success, whilst welcome, has come with a price and given the current size of the museum and the high footfall, the visitor experience has, on many occasions, been less than satisfactory as overcrowding has become a serious issue.
“The architects reviewed the existing footprint of the Tolbooth complex and by utilising underused space on the ground floor the plans permit the doubling of the size of the museum at this level.
“The addition of a glass walled upper floor creates an area that will provide panoramic views of the harbour and coast and be able to operate as a cafĂ©, a function room, further museum space or any combination of all three.
“The design is a blend of the old and modern and will become an iconic building that is sure to attract locals and tourists alike”

A brief history: The Tolbooth

The Tolbooth, constructed in the late 1500s, is believed to be the oldest building in Stonehaven.
It was built as a storage facility by George Keith, the 5th Earl Marischal and founder of Aberdeen’s iconic Marischal College, as he began work on an extension of the neighbouring Dunnottar Castle.
When Stonehaven was named the county town in 1600, it began its life as the local tolbooth, courthouse and prison.
The ground floor was the site of the prison and an exercise yard, and the first floor was home to the court.
When new facilities were opened in 1767 to fulfil these functions, the Tolbooth entered a new era as a storage facility for grain, coal and lime until the mid-1900s.
In dire need of repair, it was rebuilt in 1963 into a cafe and museum.
The STA was formed after the building was closed down by its owners, Aberdeenshire Council, in 2011 and revived it as a free entry community facility.
The local heritage museum is home to relics dating back to the Iron Age, as well as items from the history of the building itself.
Article Source: https://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/fp/news/aberdeenshire/1111102/plans-lodged-to-expand-stonehavens-most-historic-building/


Thursday, 6 October 2016

Kids go FREE!! Saturday 8th - Sunday 22nd October inclusive

If you are looking for something to do with your kids while they are off school during the October 'tattie' holidays why not spend some time exploring the castle then down to the beach here for some rock pool adventures? Up to 3 children are free with a paying adult from Saturday 8th - Sunday 22nd October inclusive.

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Tony Roper in Conversation with Andy Hall

The Grassic Gibbon centre is hosting an evening of Supper and Entertainment with Tony Roper in conversation with Andy Hall on Saturday 29th October 2016. Tony is well known as an actor for his role as James Cotter in Rab C Nesbitt and working with renowned comedian Rickki Fulton in Scotch and Wry. He is also a comedian, playright and writer. Andy Hall has had conversations with a number of celebrities at the Grassic Gibbon Centre and each nigh has been a great success You are in for an interesting evening if you can attend.
Tickets are available by calling 01561 361668

Friday, 26 August 2016

Dunnottar Castle

This video by Mark Westguard lets you see why thousands of people flock to Stonehaven to see the iconic Dunnottar Castle.

I loved the video and thought the background music was very haunting and appropriate.


That music was used for several different Scottish songs but I remember it as 'Waly Waly"

 

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Mearns Connection Festival 2016


The Mearns Connection Festival celebrates the work of the three most famous people with links to The Mearns in the North East of Scotland.


Lewis Grassic Gibbon was the pseudonym of James Leslie Mitchell[1](13 February 1901 – 7 February 1935), a Scottish writer.  
Born in Auchterless, and raised inArbuthnott in the former county ofKincardineshire, Mitchell started working as a journalist for the Aberdeen Journalin 1917 and later for the Farmers Weeklyfollowing a move to Glasgow.[2] Around this time he was active with the British Socialist Party.[3] In 1919 he joined theRoyal Army Service Corps and served inIran, India and Egypt before enlisting in the Royal Air Force in 1920. In the RAF he worked as a clerk and spent some time in the Middle East. He married Rebecca Middleton (known as "Ray") in 1925 and they settled in Welwyn Garden City. He began writing full-time in 1929. Mitchell wrote numerous books and shorter works under both his real name and his nom de plume before his early death in 1935 of peritonitis brought on by a perforated ulcer.
Mitchell attracted attention from his earliest attempts at fiction, notably fromH. G. Wells, but it was his trilogy entitledA Scots Quair, and in particular its first book Sunset Song, with which he made his mark. A Scots Quair, with its combination of stream-of-consciousness, lyrical use of dialect, and social realism, is considered to be among the defining works of the 20th century Scottish Renaissance. It tells the story of Chris Guthrie, a young woman growing up in the north-east of Scotland in the early 20th century. All three parts of the trilogy have been turned into serials by BBC Scotland, written by Bill Craig, with Vivien Heilbron as Chris. Spartacus, a novel set in the famous slave revolt, is his best-known full-length work outside this trilogy.
Joan Kathleen Harding Eardley (18 May 1921 – 16 August 1963) was a British artist noted for her portraiture of street children in Glasgow and for her landscapes of the fishing village of Catterline and surroundings on the North-East coast of Scotland...... Read More


Robert Burns (25 January 1759 – 21 July 1796), also known as Rabbie Burns, the Bard of Ayrshire and various other names and epithets,[nb 1] was a Scottish poet and lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide. He is the best known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, although much of his writing is also in English and a lightScots dialect, accessible to an audience beyond Scotland. He also wrote in standard English, and in these writings his political or civil commentary is often at its bluntest……Read More 

The Annual Festival is to be held over a weeekend from Fri 15th August to Sun 17th Aug 2016.