Crofting calendar 2014 now available

The 2014 Crofting Calendar is now available, presenting the best artwork created by primary school children across Skye, Lochalsh and Wester Ross.

The calendar is the culmination of a two-year project promoting the benefits of crofting to children. In May 2012 over 250 pupils attended a Crofting Fun Day organised by the local Highland Council and National Trust for Scotland Countryside Rangers in partnership with Crofting Connections and Skye and Lochalsh Environment Forum.

In the following spring the children visited a working croft in their local area and created artwork as a result of the inspiration gained from that visit. A total of 700 calendars were printed and distributed amongst the participating schools, enabling each child in each school to have a copy — a year-long reminder of the importance of crofting to our rural communities.

The calendar closes with the Gaelic proverb, “Beathaich thusa mis’ an-diugh, is beathaichidh mis’ thus’ a-màireach” (Feed thou me today, and I’ll feed you tomorrow). The finances required to cover the printing costs were met by the organisers with support from the Wester Ross Environmental Network and Lochalsh and Skye Housing Association. First prizewinner in the schools art competition was Hannah MacDiarmid, a pupil at Auchtertyre Primary School, with second and third prizes going to Laura Macleod, Plockton Primary, and Isla Macleod, Bun-Sgoil Stafainn.

First prize winner Hannah MacDiarmid is pictured with (left to right) Gavin Skipper (NTS Balmacara Ranger), Judith Bullivant (Skye and Lochalsh Environment Forum), John Phillips (Senior Ranger, Highland Council Countryside Rangers), Caroline Ross (class teacher) and Rule Anderson (NTS Kintail Ranger).