Making Apples from Guns

Orchard Sign Swords to ploughshares, but now we may have to think of from guns to apples.  Comrie Community Orchard is a great example of the imaginative reuse of a heritage site.  The remains of an assault course and firing range have been incorporated into the plans for the future.

Obstacles for Growth

Obstacles are being used to train fruit trees.

Assault CourseCompost bins are situated along the side of the firing range.

Compost Bins

And a wonderful wooden Shepherd’s Hut has been made by a local crafts person and situated in the growing orchard.

The Shepherd's Hut

I love the mix of the reuse of the old with new introductions such as The Shepherd’s Hut.  As the orchard matures this will become a distinctive and peaceful place.  Even better in due course, for those who help tend the orchard, it will provide food to sustain and share….


Comrie Community Orchard is located at Cultybraggan Camp, Perthshire, which was subject to a community buy out in 2007 through Comrie Development Trust (CDT).  Watch out for another post about the other elements of Cultybraggan Camp in the next few weeks. 

Resilience and Cultural Landscape

Resilience and the Cultural Landscape, is a recent volume, edited by Tobias Plieninger and Claudia Bieling, which explores the ramifications of the convergence of the theory of resilience and the management of cultural landscapes.

I have only just started the first chapter but cant wait to read this book further as it looks so interesting…if only there were more hours in each day…!

The first chapter ‘Connecting Cultural Landscapes to Resilience’, by Tobias Plieninger and Claudia Bieling, introduces some of the themes of the volume.  It uses the examples of the park-like Spanish dehesa landscapes of Extremadura and the forest-grassland landscapes of the Black Forest of Germany and the pressures which they have historically and currently faced.  It makes the point that these landscapes are often seen as traditional and timeless but are in fact complex cultural landscapes with their emergence due to relatively recent practices.  They also make the point that these cultural landscapes which are now valued were created

‘through severe landscape intervention and remodelling (e.g traditional vineyard terraces), unsuitable and degrading management practices (e.g. litter removal from forests) and / or social injustice (e.g latifundism).’

The eighteen other papers in the volume look equally interesting, ranging from those considering the conceptual frameworks relating to cultural landscapes and resilience through case studies about the analysis and management of cultural landscapes with examples relating to Spain, Argentina, Cuba, Germany, Austria, Sweden and Tanzania.

If you have any interest in socio-ecological relationships and the sustainable management of cultural landscapes this volume may be of interest to you.