After an effective and interesting AGM on the 18th February 2017, we had been promised a presentation tour of Harris by Diana Barclay and Ann Evans after their various trips to the Hebrides. This tour included an array of wonderful materials and artefacts for us to look at and examine.
Both Ann and Diana had been on Harris at the same time and they were able to share their experiences in a lively and stimulating way – so much so that I really wanted to book my flight to Harris that afternoon!
The talk included much about the weaving and textile industry and its history but also included information about the way of life on the islands. Apparently the children’s playground on Harris has a sign to tell children they must be in by 9pm each night, and that the park is closed on Sundays! Ann informed the group that “nothing was ever busy…so if you want a real rest this is the place to go!” It sounds wonderful, as did the comments about the whisky distillery! Definitely a place I would like to visit.
Diana kindly brought her copy of Ian Lawson’s wonderful book “From the Land comes the cloth” along for us to see. This is so much more than a ‘coffee-table’ book as the images are just amazing. It is expensive and not stocked by local book shops because of it, however it is stunning. The images are beautiful and reflect the colours of the landscape so well. They clearly show how inspiring the place is, not just for the weavers but for the artists also!
The presentation included information about local artist, places to eat, the use of Gaelic and the terrain. Certainly as good as any tourist information centre….and we had personal photographs, wools and fibres, weaving samples and made up items. Fabulous!!
Thank you so much Ann and Diana for such a great presentation!