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TITLE
'Rivers Running Far'
EXTERNAL ID
AB_LL_HUGH_ALLISON_01
PLACENAME
Braes of Gleniffer
DATE OF RECORDING
2008
PERIOD
2000s
CREATOR
Hugh Allison
SOURCE
Am Baile
ASSET ID
1330
KEYWORDS
audio
literary landscapes

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This audio extract is from 'Rivers Running Far' by Hugh Allison, published in 2005. It is read here by the author.

'Stand on the crest of the Gleniffer Braes above Elderslie, in that place between night and day. That tremulous moment just before dawn breaks. Stand there facing west, as time hangs suspended like an indrawn breath, and all is in darkness.

Suddenly, not degree by slow degree, but rather, all at once, come all as if unbidden, you can see the shape of the mountains of the west. Then, as the morning lightens at your back, the detail washes into the landscapes before you, like a picture being painted while you watch.

Here you stand, in the land of the ancient Britons, looking west to Argyll of the Scots, which writer/historian Marion Campbell called 'the Enduring Heartland'. But all directions are equally rewarding. This vantage point affords views north, south, east, and west, over a land steeped in history, and rich in tales. Finn and Ossian from the Celtic Myth Cycles bestrode those distant hills, whilst Elderslie, at the foot of the Brae on which you stand, was the birthplace of that Scottish icon, William Wallace., The struggles of the past have provided more than their fair share of great figures, and this has been a land fit for heroes.

But there have been times when this was not so!'

Hugh G Allison was born and brought up in Lochaber. In 1977 he went to Glasgow University to study Geography and Geology, and much later (in 2008) he graduated with a BA from the Open University. He worked first with Tourist Boards, and then with Nairn District Council, becoming their Tourism and Entertainments Officer in 1983.

Hugh married in 1986, and both of his daughters were brought up in Nairn. He remained with the Council through local government reorganisation, and worked with Highland Council until 2000. During that time he helped found Moscow's first ever Highland Games, and was seconded to work on a number of projects in Wales and in North America.

In 2001 he took a job with the National Trust for Scotland at Culloden. While with the Trust he managed both Culloden Battlefield and Brodie Castle. He also began tour guiding for cruise ship visitors, and wrote three books: 'Roots of Stone' (2004) looks at the tapestry of the last 2000 years of Scottish history, especially the relationships between family history and national history; 'Rivers Running Far' (2005) examines the Scottish diaspora, particularly motivations and outcomes, whilst at the same time explaining how Hugh was sworn in as a Kentucky Deputy Sheriff during his research; 'Culloden Tales' (2007) is a readable and accurate history of the battle, with tales from those who have visited the moor.

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'Rivers Running Far'

2000s

audio; literary landscapes

Am Baile

Literary Landscapes: Hugh Allison

This audio extract is from 'Rivers Running Far' by Hugh Allison, published in 2005. It is read here by the author.<br /> <br /> 'Stand on the crest of the Gleniffer Braes above Elderslie, in that place between night and day. That tremulous moment just before dawn breaks. Stand there facing west, as time hangs suspended like an indrawn breath, and all is in darkness.<br /> <br /> Suddenly, not degree by slow degree, but rather, all at once, come all as if unbidden, you can see the shape of the mountains of the west. Then, as the morning lightens at your back, the detail washes into the landscapes before you, like a picture being painted while you watch. <br /> <br /> Here you stand, in the land of the ancient Britons, looking west to Argyll of the Scots, which writer/historian Marion Campbell called 'the Enduring Heartland'. But all directions are equally rewarding. This vantage point affords views north, south, east, and west, over a land steeped in history, and rich in tales. Finn and Ossian from the Celtic Myth Cycles bestrode those distant hills, whilst Elderslie, at the foot of the Brae on which you stand, was the birthplace of that Scottish icon, William Wallace., The struggles of the past have provided more than their fair share of great figures, and this has been a land fit for heroes. <br /> <br /> But there have been times when this was not so!'<br /> <br /> Hugh G Allison was born and brought up in Lochaber. In 1977 he went to Glasgow University to study Geography and Geology, and much later (in 2008) he graduated with a BA from the Open University. He worked first with Tourist Boards, and then with Nairn District Council, becoming their Tourism and Entertainments Officer in 1983.<br /> <br /> Hugh married in 1986, and both of his daughters were brought up in Nairn. He remained with the Council through local government reorganisation, and worked with Highland Council until 2000. During that time he helped found Moscow's first ever Highland Games, and was seconded to work on a number of projects in Wales and in North America. <br /> <br /> In 2001 he took a job with the National Trust for Scotland at Culloden. While with the Trust he managed both Culloden Battlefield and Brodie Castle. He also began tour guiding for cruise ship visitors, and wrote three books: 'Roots of Stone' (2004) looks at the tapestry of the last 2000 years of Scottish history, especially the relationships between family history and national history; 'Rivers Running Far' (2005) examines the Scottish diaspora, particularly motivations and outcomes, whilst at the same time explaining how Hugh was sworn in as a Kentucky Deputy Sheriff during his research; 'Culloden Tales' (2007) is a readable and accurate history of the battle, with tales from those who have visited the moor.