Beautiful Barra's Sea Stories...

Last night I watched an old classic on BBC4: Whisky Galore. It features the beautiful landscape of the isle of Barra...


The film ends with Joan Greenwood and her fiancee wandering through the machair and the beautiful sands of Barra's beaches. It's about the sinking of a ship filled with whisky, and the sea is an important part of the lives of all Hebridean islanders.

Thanks to Keir Clarke (once again) for the tip-off to a beautifully produced story map which launched last month.

It features a range of media, and will grow over time to collect a range of stories, images, songs and other media telling the story of the sea.

This could form a great model for a project (which could be done in a non-digital way) for Primary colleagues, where the lives of islanders on places like Colonsay (Struay) are often a focus for study.

Here's the details of the project, take from the project website.

Background to Sgeulachdan na Mara - Sea Stories
Sgeulachdan na Mara - Sea Stories grew out of collaborative research undertaken by social ecologists Ruth Brennan and Iain MacKinnon and audio-visual material generated by artist Stephen Hurrel, for the publication D├╣thchas na Mara/Belonging to the Sea(Authors: MacKinnon and Brennan. Photographs: Hurrel)
The idea of a dynamic map - to reflect intergenerational knowledge, fishermen’s ways of knowing the sea and the intangible cultural heritage* of the marine environment - had been discussed by Brennan and MacKinnon, and Hurrel proposed the idea of an interactive digital map. This was subsequently developed by Hurrel and Brennan as a way of bringing to life, and making visible, what is often invisible to most people.
Hurrel and Brennan decided to collaborate on a Barra-related project following their participation in Cape Farewell’s Scottish Islands Expedition 2011. Following on from the Barra projects they received an award from Imagining Natural Scotland in 2013 to collaborate on producing a short film in response to the Firth of Clyde, titled Clyde Reflections , which they are currently working on.

*The UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage 2003 provides international protection for the intangible aspects of cultural diversity.


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