GO Cinema 2
GO Cinema 2
Perthshire's Rural Past - Farming
This short film describes the traditional farming year in Perth & Kinross during the early-mid twentieth century, when farm horses tilled the fields and large teams of men, women and children worked together to bring in the harvest. It is narrated by retired farmers and farm-workers, Jim Ogg from Methven, James McLaren from Dargill Farm, Willie Morton from Mireside Farm, ‘Tib’ from The Forge at Woodhill and Henry Kinnaird from Lethangie. Jim Ogg describes a typical year, starting with spring ploughing, sowing and harrowing, through to harvesting the crop and bringing it in for the winter. James McLaren talks about the hard, heavy work involved in the potato harvest and the tradition of lifting green potatoes in August and September. He also describes how a stack was built and the importance of keeping it water-tight to prevent the grain from damage. Willie Morton describes how a horse mill was constructed and operated, with teams of between two and six horses driving machinery that powered threshing mills and other farm machinery. Tibb describes what the farmworkers ate and drank while they were working in the fields, including a ‘greybeard of whisky’ which would be provided by the farmer during particularly hot weather; she also talks about women working on the travelling threshing mills. Henry Kinnaird describes how an ‘opening road’ was cut by hand around the perimeter of a harvest field before a horse-drawn binder came in to cut the rest of the field. In this way, the whole crop could be harvested without the binder damaging any of the standing grain. Stewart Swan sings The Plooman.
Perthshire's Rural Past - Cattle
Cattle have always played an important role in Scotland’s rural economy and Perthshire was home to two of the most celebrated cattle markets in the Scottish farming year, Crieff Tryst and the Perth Bull Sale. In this short film, we share recollections of local farmers and cattlemen whose working lives were spent looking after and breeding cattle in Perth & Kinross. Frank Batchelor of Kirkton of Collace recalls his first job as cattleman at Mullachy Farm. Sandy Gray of West Rhynd describes the changing fashions in cattle whereby the characteristics sought by breeders fifty years ago are now back in vogue. George Robb of East Lamberton recalls his first trip to the cattle market as a young boy when his father brought a cow who was such a good milker that he got tired of milking her! James McLaren and Henry Kinnaird discuss drove roads, and the Crieff and Falkirk Trysts where masses of cattle would be mustered and sold on the broad open streets. Stewart Swan sings The Plooman.
Perthshire's Rural Past - Bothy Life
In the past single men employed in farming, forestry and fishing often lived bothies. These were normally single-roomed buildings where three or four men slept, ate and socialised together. An open fire provided warmth and cooking facilities; mealtimes were basic affairs with porridge for breakfast and lunch, followed by a more substantial evening meal of eggs, potatoes or meat. The working days were long and hard, often beginning at five in the morning, but the evenings offered time for socialising and music-making, many men being accomplished fiddlers, mouth organists, accordionists, or singers. In this short film, farm-workers, Stewart Swann from Muirton and Jim Ogg from Methven describe their early years living in traditional stone-built farm bothies. Tom Logie from Errol describes life in the salmon fishing bothies which were once a common site along the River Tay. And John Cameron from Perth, describes wooden bothies which were built to accommodate large numbers of forestry workers who found employment across the Highlands in the post-war years. Stewart Swan sings excerpts from traditional bothy ballads, The Plooman and All True Lovers.
Perthshire's Rural Past - Forestry
Forests and woodlands have shaped the landscape of Perthshire for centuries and given employment to generations of local people and industries. In this short film John Cameron of Perth talks about self-employed woodcutters who could earn big money working long hard days on the county’s plantations. He describes local saw mills which fashioned the felled wood into a wide range of goods for building, fencing and other industries, and the different jobs that were involved at each step of the process. Maggie Murray of Bruntie Mills talks about the region’s ancient oak woodlands and the fashionable beech plantations created by local estate owners in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, including Meiklour Beech Hedge - the world’s tallest hedge. She also explains how woodland offered cover to soldiers during the Jacobite uprisings. Willie Morton of Mireside Farm recalls that farmers often planted small woods on poor quality land, rather than trying to grow arable crops or livestock. Stewart Swan sings The Plooman.
Perthshire's Rural Past - Recreation
In the days before motor cars and electricity were common-place, rural recreation was centred around farming, community and village life. In this short film, Danny Coupar from Clockmaden Farm describes the popular spring ploughing matches which attracted large numbers of competitors and onlookers alike. Tom Logie from Errol remembers the annual cobble boat races which were held on the River Tay. Jim Ogg from Methven and Frank Batchelor from Kirkton of Collace recall regular Friday night dances which took place in village halls across the region, filled with music, dancing and laughter. ‘Tibb’ from The Forge at Wolfhill describes church ‘soirees’ where people enjoyed concerts with ‘tea and a pokie o buns’, and in the winter played curling matches on local ponds and lochs. Stewart Swan sings The Plooman.
Perthshire's Rural Past - Fishing
The River Tay is one of Scotland’s great salmon fishing rivers and commercial fishing has operated here since at least the fouteenth century, with stake net fishers working in the estuary and net and cobble fishers upstream. This short film describes the working lives of the net and cobble fishers, and is narrated by retired fishermen, Tom Logie of Errol and Tom Jarvis of Ferryfield of Carpow. The season started in spring at Stanley and moved downstream through the summer months. Tom Logie recounts the names of the fishing stations which were located at regular intervals along the river, with names such as Reekit Lady, Huggies, Bell’s Bank and The Doukit. A crew of up to seven men – the gaffer, two towmen and four boatmen – worked together rowing cobbles [boats] out to the deep waters of the river where they laid the nets and then drew them back in to the river side in a wide circle, using a winch which was set on the river bank. A full catch was heavy and the traditional hemp nets absorbed the water, so they had to be hauled ashore and dried after each catch; later, nylon nets were introduced which are much lighter and made the job easier. The cobbles were built of oak timbers with larch barks; they were stable boats which never capsized and could take in great quantities of water without sinking. Modern fibreboard boats became more common in the later years of the industry, but were no match for the traditional cobble. Stewart Swan sings The Plooman.