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Activity sheets

Monday, 20 April 2020

Sometimes, for whatever reason, everyone gets stuck indoors. But imaginations still need feeding, arty hands need things to do and energy needs to be burned off. That’s why we’ve put together this collection of activity sheets. They’re great fun for all ages and are an opportunity to be creative and to learn. And by helping to focus on the natural environment, the activity sheets are also a...

Visit our heritage sites

Tuesday, 03 September 2019

From Iron Age brochs to the remains of World War 2 defences. From abandoned Highland townships to works that trace the development of the Industrial Revolution. Our forests and land are home to a wealth of Scottish history. This page details some of the most interesting and evocative heritage destinations we care for. Why not pay them a visit and discover the stories of Scotland's past? Our ...

Newfoundlander Overseas Forestry Unit (NOFU)

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

The Newfoundland Overseas Forestry Unit (NOFU) recruited skilled lumberjacks to come to Scotland to cut down trees for the war effort. Over 3,500 men chanced their luck and volunteered. Clement Atlee, the Deputy Prime Minister, visiting a Newfoundland Foresters Camp in 1940.. The island of Newfoundland is sited off the east coast of Canada. In 1949 it became part of Canada, but at the start of...

Dun da Lamh fort

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

Dun da Lamh is located on a rocky hill at the north-east end of Black Craig. It overlooks the junction of Glen Shira and the River Spey to the north and Strath Mashie and River Mashie to the south. The interior of the fort covers an area of some 4000 square metres. It is very uneven and includes several rocky outcrops. The east and south sides of the hill are steep and include some vertical crags...

Britain needs wood

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

During the 19th century Britain grew as an industrial nation. As a result, wood was in high demand for fuel and building. Rather than developing its own forests Britain became increasingly reliant on imports to meet its growing needs. From the outbreak of World War I, Britain could no longer count on foreign wood. Overseas supplies were cut off due to blockades by enemy ships. Britain had to rely...

Castle Greig Roman fort

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

This particularly fine small Roman fortlet is in excellent condition. It is rectangular on plan and is set within a rampart and double set of ditches. The fort would have housed a unit of 80 soldiers. Although it was one of the first Roman monuments to be excavated in Scotland (in the mid 19th century), its exact date of construction remains unknown. The absence of a Roman road in the vicinity ...

Woodland use and townships

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

Trees were an important building resource for townships. Early houses often had low turf or stone walls, but the main building material was wood.   Large amounts of timber were needed for the construction of the roofs, which were then covered with turf and finished with a thatch of straw, bracken or heather. The weight of these roofs would have been too much for turf walls to bear, so they w...

Clune Wood recumbent stone circle

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

The stone circle in Clune Wood is located on the summit of the hill, with fine views out over the southern arc. The stone circle is roughly oval and measures up to 16.5 metres in diameter. It is formed from a single recumbent stone with two flanking stones and six upright stones. A stone cairn has been built within the circle. This is a recumbent stone circle, one of a number of distinctive meg...

Woodland use and industrialisation

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

Wood was a vital source of fuel during the rise of Scottish industries in the 18th century, particularly for the iron industry.  Early records shows estates sold timber from their pinewoods for construction. However, it was not until industrialisation that there was a rise in the demand for other wood. Oak was prized for making charcoal, used to fuel blast furnaces which smelted iron.  ...

Anti-invasion defences

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

Before May 1940, defences for mainland Britain were scant and mainly located in the south of England. There were though over 400 miles of British coastline suitable for landing enemy troops and tanks. This coast needed more protection from invasion. On 27 of May 1940, General Ironside took charge of the anti-invasion defence plan for Britain. With so few men at his disposal, the General focused o...

Natural clues

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

Trees, plants and fungi can all provide valuable clues about the age of a forest and how it was used in the past. Certain plants will only grow in places which have not been disturbed for a very long time. These places must also have constant cover provided by trees. Such plants are natural clues that areas of woodland are ancient (over 400 years old). Often these clues are difficult to find eve...

Canadian Forestry Corps (CFC)

Tuesday, 02 July 2019

In both World War 1 (WW1) and World War 2 (WW2) the Canadian government formed the Canadian Forestry Corps (CFC), in answer to the British government's request for overseas woodsmen to cover a workforce shortage in Britain. In WW2, the CFC consisted of around 30 companies that were sent to work, mainly in Scotland, but also elsewhere in Europe. Although a military unit, the CFC’s main task was...

Torrvald farmstead

Monday, 29 April 2019

Over two hundred and fifty years ago, Torrvald farmstead stood in open farmland within the River Tay valley. Above the farm rose the rugged and treeless mountain peak called Craigvinean Hill. Today, Craigvinean Forest has enveloped the mountain; you can find the remains of the farmstead hidden within the trees at the foot of its slope. Historical records first mention Torrvald in the mid 16th cen...