Scottish Snippets

Colour Supplement

31 January 2009

The Rampant Scotland Newsletter includes a number of photographs which illustrate the weather and the seasons, plus the flora and fauna of the current week around Scotland. This separate "colour supplement" displays some more pictures, in a larger format. Here is this week's crop of Scottish views!

The celebration of the 250th anniversary of the birth of Robert Burns has prompted many people and organisations to mark the event in many different ways. In Scotland, the anniversary has given rise to the "Year of Homecoming" which was officially launched on 25 January. The Royal Mail has produced this special set of stamps to mark the occasion. One depicts the famous Alexander Naismith portrait of Burns and the other quotes from the bard's most famous and enduring poem "A man's a man for a' that". Burns is the only person outside the Royal Family to feature in three special stamp issues (1966 and 1996 and now in 2009).

The City Chambers (roughly equivalent to "City Hall") in Glasgow was literally the backdrop for a 15-minute "slide-show" illustrating the life of the poet. The moving images were accompanied by a soundtrack peppered with songs and poems by Burns.

The money earned by Burns from the publication of his first edition of poetry allowed him to travel around Scotland. During his journeys he collected and edited many of the almost forgotten songs and some of these - such as "My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose" were sung during the George Square presentation.

"Auld Lang Syne" by Burns is now sung around the world at New Year's Eve celebrations and other occasions when we want to remember absent friends. The light show in George Square was shown last Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings. On the final day, there was also a host of live performers, including the Red Hot Chilli Pipers, former Pop Idol winner Michelle McManus and country dancers to entertain onlookers.

This has been the coldest winter since 1996-97, so it's great to find the first major sign of spring in the form of this substantial clump of snowdrops in bloom at the side of a country road, just north of Glasgow. Of course, February and March are the main months when snowdrops really come into there own. In recent years, a number of locations in various parts of Scotland with large collections of these lovely flowers have become involved in a "Snowdrop Festival" between 1 February and 16th March. For more details on the Snowdrop Festival, see VisitScotland web pages.

If you want to look back at earlier editions of this Colour Supplement, there is an Index Page

Where else would you like to go in Scotland?

Separator line