Crannog and Community: Activity at Home & Away

Crannog and Community: Activity at Home & Away

The Iron Age team at the Scottish Crannog Centre is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year with a series of wow-factor events perfect for all the family.

Visitors to the unique, iconic thatched roundhouse in Loch Tay will find expert guides in period clothing, exhibits and hands-on ancient skills that bring the past to life. Dress up, try woodworking, textiles and more, and have a go at making fire without matches!

April kick-started our 20th anniversary programme with lively Easter and Beltane celebrations. As Spring rolls on, May is a busy month for our Iron Age team both at home and away.

As 2017 is also Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, our Crannog Crew has been invited to present at several public outreach events. The first two are this month, one at an Archaeology Festival at Langside, Glasgow and another at Drumpellier Country Park in North Lanarkshire. The Glasgow event is on May 13th when we will be joining archaeological teams from the Glasgow area to offer our Iron Age expertise. The second is on May 20th, coinciding with the national Festival of Museums weekend, where we will be helping to launch an exceptional new crannog themed playground complex as part of the Seven Lochs Wetland development project. The innovative timber climbing frames, ramps, nets and jumps are inspired by the design of our very own crannog in Loch Tay. A great way to promote collaboration between regions! There is also at least one crannog in the Seven Lochs area……so watch this space!

Back at home, our own celebrations continue with our Iron Age Ingenuity event on May 28th, promising another fascinating Bank Holiday weekend treat. Showcasing crafts including metalworking, textiles and cooking, the day is sure to inspire admiration for our prehistoric ancestors.

Special themed events run throughout the season but the one not to miss is the biggest: The Celts Are Coming!   This interactive weekend of August 5th-6th features a spectacular living history fair and Iron Age artisan village. Sword-making, iron forging, hide-tanning, cooking and other crafts, plus try paddling a dugout canoe, archery, spear-throwing and more. Simply the best family day out, ever!

Meantime, there are a number of new developments at the Centre, including the ability to Gift Aid donations (in lieu of admission fees) direct to the Scottish Trust for Underwater Archaeology (SC018418), which owns and operates the Scottish Crannog Centre. This tax benefit will contribute to the Trust’s long term sustainability and ultimately further the work of the Trust and enhance the museum exhibition onsite.

Other new developments will be posted on twitter @ScottishCrannog and on the website at in the News and Visitors’ sections. These will include the ability to purchase tickets online and download new fact files. Visitors can already share reviews and photographs via the website and we hope to promote this activity more widely in the upcoming months.

2017 is going to be a busy year for us all! Parking is limited in Kenmore and opposite the Crannog Centre so why not consider leaving the car at home when you next visit, or get dropped off? It is a lovely stroll to or from Kenmore or further afield. We also have bike racks, offer storage of panniers and helmets and we have a covered picnic area. And with a range of restaurants and activities nearby not to mention stunning views, a ‘go-slow’ in the area is a good idea.

Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology

2017 is Scotland’s year of Heritage and Archaeology, a celebration of Scotland’s people, our distinct culture and traditions, our historic landscapes, attractions, icons, as well as our hidden gems and amazing stories. To find out more visit –

Priceless collection of books goes on display at Scotland’s oldest lending library

Priceless collection of books goes on display at Scotland’s oldest lending library

Several hundred volumes of first editions and rare works dating back to the 16thCentury have been donated to Innerpeffray in Perthshire over the past three years.

They have come from the collection of the reclusive US bibliophile Janet St Germain and have seen what was Scotland’s first lending library converted to accommodate the books for display.

The rarity of some of the books — including a “Kilmarnock” Burns — makes it almost impossible to value the collection as a whole, but the library’s governors believe it to be of major importance to the nation.

Find out more

#streetart – Perth’s Vennels

#streetart – Perth’s Vennels

A vennel is a passageway between the gables of two buildings which can in effect be a minor street. The city of Perth has lost many vennels with the gradual transformation of its medieval centre, but some have survived and are still used: Guard Vennel, Cow Vennel, Baxters Vennel, Fleshers Vennel, Water Vennel and Cutlog Vennel.

Over the course of two weekends, local artists Katie, Eleanor and Hamish worked to highlight these vennels through a series of street art installations.  The intent was to reconnect people with these historic passageways, encourage people to think about their historic uses and perhaps how they can be used in the future.

Each vennel was themed and passers by were encouraged to comment, ask questions and express their opinions – and of course – they did!  The vast majority of people that engaged with the project were very positive, glad to see that a bit of colour and attention were being brought to the often overlooked pathways.

Spray-chalk was used throughout which enabled the spaces to be reimagined on a temporary basis – we all hope that this is the start of something much bigger!


Follow Katie, Eleanor and Hamish on social media to check out their work and stay up to date with future projects:

Katie – Twitter, Instagram

Eleanor, Facebook,Twitter, Instagram

Hamish, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

Dig It! 2017

Dig It! 2017

Dig It! 2017 is year-long celebration of Scottish archaeology with a packed programme of events from organisations across the country. It’s all about discovering Scotland’s past, present and future stories. Whether you’re getting muddy at a dig or strolling through a festival, now is the perfect time to let archaeology move you, surprise you and inspire you.

Dig It! 2017 is co-ordinated by the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland and Archaeology Scotland for the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.

Here are some of the events taking place in Perthshire Visit the Dig It 2017 website.


Saturday 25 March – Friday 08 September

All around Perthshire’s Cateran Trail, you will be able to experience arts, culture & heritage activities & events which will inspire you to think about & celebrate our Common Wealth.

2017 is the Scottish theme Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology and we are grateful to Perth & Kinross Heritage Trust for their help in planning and delivering this part of the programme for us and for leading our guided walks.

Details – Cateran’s Common Wealth

Photo: Clare Cooper


Saturday 01 April – Tuesday 31 October

2017 is the Scottish theme Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, and at Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust they are joining in this celebration of Scotland’s heritage with an extra special programme of vibrant, engaging and informative events, not just over one month but seven!

The programme will span from the beginning of April to the end of October with an official launch event on the Saturday 22 April. The launch looks to be an exciting sunset ceremony beginning with a torch-lit procession through the atmospherically lit woodland of Moncreiffe hill up to the hillfort of Moredun top where the sound of a prehistoric horn will echo once more across the ramparts and a prehistoric world will be reconstructed through immersive hilltop virtual reality.

Details – Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust


Sunday 16 April @ 10:30am – Sunday 16 April @ 4:30pm

Help kick-start the Scottish Crannog Centre’s 20th anniversary year by joining them to celebrate Easter with pancakes cooked over an open fire; make your own bread rolls to be baked in their clay ovens and churn your own butter to spread on them. Hands-on fun and learning all in one go!

Visit them on Easter Sunday and take a step back in time with their expert guides who will demonstrate ancient cooking methods to produce delicious pancakes and more. Tastings will take place throughout the day.

This superb event is the first of many throughout 2017 at the award-winning Scottish Crannog Centre, neatly coinciding with VisitScotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.

Accessibility – Visitors

Details – The Scottish Crannog Centre

Photo credit: Dita Margarita / Foter / CC BY


Thursday 25 May

Join the archaeologist to learn about one of Scotland’s most unusual historic sites.

Tickets available soon.

Details – Historic Environment Scotland


Saturday 22 April – Free Entry

Celebrating the launch of Perth and Kinross Archaeology Year with a torch-lit procession through the illuminated woodland of Moncreiffe Hill. Experience the sound of a prehistoric horn echoing across the ramparts of Moredun Top hillfort and immerse yourself in a reconstructed prehistoric Perthshire through virtual reality stations positioned around the hill.

Details and Booking – Woodland Trust

Image: Smart History


Friday 01 September – Saturday 30 September

The Mary Queen of Scots Festival 2017 will celebrate the rich cultural and history and heritage of the Kinross area, most notably it’s famed connection to Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots. The event will commemorate Mary’s life as Kinross poignantly marks the 450 year relationship with the Castle on Loch Leven Island where she was held captive and where spent some of her most troubled years, and the end of her reign in 1567.

The festival will take place over a weekend in September (exact dates tbc) and the programme will include living history encampments, music, food and drink and a programme of children’s entertainment to explore; all activities will guarantee a great day out.

Details – Mary Queen of Scots Festival

Image via Mary Queen of Scots Festival

Archaeology is for everyone.

It’s about you, me and all the people who’ve gone before us. It’s about identities and a sense of belonging. It’s about getting muddy – or staying laboratory clean – and having fun. It’s about discovering and telling Scotland’s stories. So make sure you get out and about during Dig It! 2017

Perth and Kinross Archaeology Year 2017

Perth and Kinross Archaeology Year 2017

The programme will be officially launched by singer/songwriter and PKHT patron Dougie McLean at a special twilight ceremony on the 22nd April. The launch is not to be missed and will be an exciting event beginning with a torch-lit procession through the atmospherically lit woodland of Moncreiffe Hill. Up on the hillfort of Moredun top,the sound of a prehistoric horn will echo once more across the ramparts and a prehistoric world will be reconstructed through immersive hilltop virtual reality. The wider events programme offers new guided walks to some of the county’s lesser-explored archaeological sites as well as reviving old favourites such as tours of the Roman Gask Ridge sites and trips to many of the hillforts that crown Perthshire’s hilltops. There will be lots of opportunities to get your hands dirty and experience the past at the trowel’s edge with ve excavations to sign-up and take part in. Navigation courses using archaeological sites, workshops and demonstrations in archaeological survey techniques, a Medieval Fair in Perth city centre will be taking place, and then there are the Scottish Crannog Centre’s 20th anniversary celebration events to look forward to. Doors Open Days is not to be forgotten and will return in September, this time across three consecutive weekends instead of one. The events on offer are delivered by a suite of partner organisations and individuals, and in particular it is encouraging to see strong community involvement from local societies participating and sharing their passion for the past with others.

PKAY17 offers residents and visitors a variety of ways to interact with the historic environment of Perth and Kinross. You don’t need to have any knowledge of history or archaeology to be able to enjoy the events on offer; an inquisitive mind and a thirst for discovery is all we recommend. A digital version of this programme, online calendar and booking system can be found on the Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust website You can also ‘Like us’ on Facebook or ‘Follow us’ on Twitter (@PKHeritageTrust, #PKAY17) for the latest updates and event news.

There are lots of ways to explore Perthshire’s past in 2017 so get stuck in and discover!


The Storr Loch Monster is coming back to Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre Easter 2018

The Storr Loch Monster is coming back to Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre Easter 2018

The Storr Loch Monster is coming back to Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre next Easter 2018.

In 1966 Norrie Gillies was walking along the back in Skye when he made an amazing fossil discovery.  Both he and his son Allan are work for SSE and were determined the Storr Lochs Monster should be enjoyed by the public.

Allan Gillies tells the story of that rare fossil find and how 50 years later the monster is being brought to life

Days Out from Perth – Crieff and Comrie

Days Out from Perth – Crieff and Comrie

For our second Day Out from Perth, we’ve chosen Crieff and Comrie, a bustling town and pretty village in the heart of the Strathearn area. Spring is in the air as we set off from Perth along the A85 to Crieff, about 18 miles away. 2017 is Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, so we’ll be sure to include some links to the past.

9.45am – MacRosty Park, Crieff


Our first stop is MacRosty Park, a beautiful tree-filled space just a short walk from the town centre. Named after its benefactor, James MacRosty, the park has been enjoyed by locals and tourists for over 100 years.

Among its features are a Victorian bandstand, the Turret Burn, woodland walks, a playpark, a café, a magic mirror and so much green space to scamper about in. This morning there are dogs aplenty enjoying a sniff of morning air (and a dook in the water!).

We climb the steps to the playpark (there’s also an accessible path) and have a zoom down the Flying Fox slide, a shimmy up the climbing-wall rock and a bounce on the trampolines. Later this morning, the park will be alive with kids running, jumping and sliding, and in the warmer months they’ll be running through the special play-sprinklers to the café for ice creams.

Feeling wide awake after our jaunt in the park, we drive a few minutes along the road to Glenturret Distillery, the oldest in Scotland. It’s home to the world-renowned and best-selling Famous Grouse blend and the Glenturret single malts.

We’re welcomed warmly by a member of staff on the front desk, and immediately offered a delicious hot toddy or apple and cinnamon juice. In the name of research (and as I’m not driving), I have to try both, of course!

We join a group of enthusiastic German tourists, and our happy tour group makes our way through the distillery, starting with the Barley Room and finishing with an insight into the blending process.  Charlie, our guide, is an entertaining host, full of stories and happy to answer any questions. Our young daughter is the only kid on the tour, and she’s delighted when he asks her to demonstrate separating the grist by shaking the official wooden box.

It’s heartening to see how many old-fashioned methods are still used. Glenturret is the only distillery in Scotland still to use a hand-operated Mash Tun, for example. The tradition of the Glenturret cats is still very much alive, too, and we meet Glen, the gorgeous ginger tom, curled up asleep in a chair near the copper still. Given half a chance, that’s where I’d spend my mornings too.

After the tour we make our way to the distillery shop where Charlie offers us drams of the Famous Grouse blend and the peated Glenturret malt. It’s a tough life but I taste them both. The peated malt is surprisingly creamy and smooth, and, tasting the Famous Grouse it’s not hard to see why it’s Scotland’s best-selling blend. Responsibility for these tastes lies chiefly with Kirsteen Campbell, Glenturret’s master blender, whose nose is insured for £2 million! Thank you, Kirsteen, Charlie, and everyone at Glenturret – we had a fantastic visit.

Crieff has a lovely selection of independent shops and cafés, and some pretty galleries. We park up and immediately spot Wee Beasties, a lovely vintage shop in King Street. Vintage is my weakness, so we pop in and buy some bits and pieces. There’s also the charming Planet Soap across the road, selling handmade soaps, candles and bath bombs. We’ve booked lunch at Café Rhubarb but can’t resist popping in to Delivino, a wine café and delicatessen, for some delicious caramel shortbread on the way.

We stroll down the road to the Strathearn Gallery, a contemporary art gallery in Crieff established in 1994. We’ve always loved this gallery, with its mix of stunning glass pieces, paintings, jewellery and sculpture. The gallery is busy and buzzing, as there’s a new exhibition of wildlife paintings by Georgina McMaster. We have a quick chat to the artist and browse the rest of the pieces to work up an appetite for lunch.

12.15pm – Lunch at Café Rhubarb then chocolates from Gordon & Durward

A friend has recommended Café Rhubarb in the centre of Crieff so we’d phoned earlier to make a booking with the friendly proprietor. Good thing, too, because it’s packed out by the time we get there. The sensible grown-ups order delicious lentil soup and crusty bread, and the wee one gets to take advantage of her age and have a toasted bagel topped with Nutella and banana, which comes with a side order of sweets and a cocktail umbrella. She’s pretty impressed. So are we – the service is friendly and welcoming, the ambience is relaxing and the food is comforting.

As if there hadn’t been enough chocolate already, we can’t resist popping into Gordon & Durward, an old-fashioned confectioner with a window full of multi-coloured sweeties in jars, Easter treats and tablet. The impeccably arranged hand-made chocolates in the glass cases are bought fresh from the Isle of Arran, and the tablet is made in-house. We all choose some treats and head for our last stop in Crieff.

1.30pm – Crieff Visitor Centre


Those of you who grew up in Perth may remember the Caithness Glass Factory at the edge of the city, where you could go to watch the glass-blowers making the famous paperweights from what looked like bright orange melted toffee. You can now see them at work at the Crieff Visitor Centre, and shop for classic pieces in their outlet store.

There’s also an antiques shop, a large busy café and a store selling local and Scottish products. Finally we pop into a compact but interesting exhibition about the 18th Century Highland Drovers, who walked long distances with their cattle through the Highlands to market towns.


It’s time for some fresh air, so we drive the seven miles to Comrie and park in the pretty village. Comrie regularly wins prizes for its floral displays, and although spring has only just arrived there are some pretty arrangements on show, including heather-filled window boxes on many of the houses.

The Deil’s Cauldron is a waterfall rushing from a rocky gorge. We opt to see the Wee Cauldron only, rather than the longer walk to the main Cauldron, and it’s a pleasant 20-minute amble to get there through an avenue of beech trees, many covered in soft green moss. We hear the Cauldron before we see it, due to the force at which it spills out over the rocks below. There’s a fenced path down to a viewing platform where we stand and breathe in the lovely fresh air. Time now to head back to the village for some refreshments!

Before we go for a cup of tea, we spot the House of Tartan in Comrie’s main street. The sign above the door says they’re home to the world’s first tartan database, so we have to find out more.

We’re greeted inside by Morag, who explains that, 20 years ago, the House of Tartan logged all existing tartans in a huge database and, since then, many more have been added. Customers can create and name their own tartan, and add it to the official list. If you’re a fan of a certain wildly popular TV series filmed in Scotland, you can now buy Outlander tartan too. There’s also a display of MacBeanies, sportswear made in Scotland that can be worn as a scarf, bandana, scrunchie, balaclava or beanie. We can’t resist picking out one in our family name.

3.15pm – Royal Hotel, Comrie


After all those tartan antics, it’s time for a visit to the Royal Hotel. We haven’t been to this family-owned hotel for a few years, and are delighted to find out it’s still comfortable, tastefully decorated and welcoming. In the lounge bar we have a pot of tea and some chocolate brownies, and relax while Django, a friendly dog who’s in with his owner, wanders over to say hello.

After our tea, there’s time for one more stop, and it’s a visitor attraction like no other.

Cultybraggan Camp is the last remaining World War II high-security POW camp in the UK. Consisting of 80 Nissen huts, the camp has been recognised by Historic Scotland as having international significance. The community of Comrie acquired Cultybraggan Camp in 2007, from the army, to ensure that it survived intact. Comrie Development Trust now manages the camp.

Cultybraggan’s most famous prisoner was Heinrich Steinmeyer. Heinrich was moved by the unexpectedly kind way he was treated both at the camp and by people from the Comrie area. He also felt welcomed by other communities in Scotland, when he stayed to work after the war. He visited Comrie over the years and, on his death, left a gift of £384,000 to be used to benefit older people in Comrie.

It’s a strange place to walk around. On the one hand, the camp is surrounded by fields, trees and hills, beautifully lit in the spring sunshine. There’s an area of allotments and a welcoming information centre. Businesses, such as the Strathearn Cheese Company, even rent a few of the huts.

On the other hand, it’s eerie and atmospheric, as we wander around the long-since abandoned huts, many of which are almost cartoonish and quaint with their little pink curtains. There’s an old rifle range and assault course (now a community orchard). There are also photos and stories of soldiers marched through the streets of Comrie to be imprisoned a long way from home.

There are tours on the first Sunday of each month from May to October, starting at 11am then every half-hour until 3pm. We did a self-guided walk-around after picking up a tour leaflet from the visitor centre.

4.45pm – Head home

It’s time to head home to Perth. We’ve had a fantastic day out, finding new places and revisiting old favourites. We’ve enjoyed friendly service, delicious treats and fascinating visitor attractions. Crieff and Comrie are a great double act.

 While you’re in the area…

There are lots more attractions to check out while you’re exploring the beautiful Strathearn area:

 Places to stay in Perth

 If you’d like to do a great Day Out from Perth, here’s a list of fantastic accommodation in the heart of the city where you can stay, before and/or afterwards:

Stay in touch

Follow Perth City Centre on Facebook and Twitter for the latest news, events, days out and activities in Perth and the surrounding area.



History and Heritage top agenda at Perthshire Conference

History and Heritage top agenda at Perthshire Conference

From adventure tourism and new visitor attractions; to the UK City of Culture Bid and innovative historic projects, Perthshire’s history and heritage took centre stage at a top regional tourism conference this week.

Held at Birnam Arts on Wednesday 22 March, Perthshire Talks Tourism 2017, which was attended by representatives from approximately 100 businesses, looked at how the region could use its rich past to help attract visitors in the future.

The annual event was delivered by the Perthshire Tourism Partnership, Perth & Kinross Council and VisitScotland.

Recent figures show that in 2015 almost a third of visitors cited ‘history and culture’ as a key motivator for their trip. In keeping with the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017, the conference was split into four sessions; investing in our history, maximising our natural heritage, bringing the past to life and unearthing the past.

Participants in the event heard from Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre,  the Snow Roads Scenic Routes, the Scottish Crannog Centre, Loch Tay Safaris, Highland Fling Bungee, the Mary Queen of Scots Festival, Perth Charterhouse Project, Perth & Kinross Archaeology Year and the Chief Executive of Culture PK leading the UK City of Culture bid.

With a growing reputation for adventure tourism, Piotr Gudan, Co-Founder of Broon Coo Adventures was also among the speakers and revealed why he believes the region should use its natural assets to attract visitors.

Piotr said: “We are blessed in Perthshire to have some of the most stunning scenery in the country. Our natural heritage is among the top reason people visit Scotland so it makes perfect sense that we use this as one of Perthshire’s selling points. I believe by using our natural heritage we can position the region as among the top adventure tourism sites in the country.”

VisitScotland Regional Director Jim Clarkson said: “Perthshire has a strong reputation for its fascinating historic attractions, breathtaking scenery and unique wildlife.

“The Perthshire Talks Tourism event was the perfect setting for businesses to come together and look at how we can use Perthshire’s strengths to attract more visitors.

“We are entering an exciting time for local tourism thanks to major investments such as the Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre, Perth Theatre and the Perth Museum and Art Gallery redevelopments.

Tourism is more than a holiday experience; it creates jobs and sustains communities in every corner of Perthshire all year round.”

David Smythe, Chairman of Perthshire Tourism Partnership, said: “Perthshire Talks Tourism is a chance to bring together those working on the frontline of tourism in the region.  It offers a great opportunity to find out about what is happening across Perthshire, as well as share advice, experience and examples of best practice with other tourism professionals.  Perthshire has so much to offer but we need to continue working together as an industry and use tourism treasures, such as our history and heritage, to fulfil our potential for visitors.”

Made In Perth

Made In Perth

Perth has a fantastic variety of independent shops, galleries and food retailers. But did you know just how many of their products are made right here?

Shopping locally helps our beautiful city to thrive and grow, and supports not only Perth’s retailers but also the local artists and makers. And if you’re a visitor to Perth we have a great range of products that you can take home as souvenirs of your trip.

We’ve gathered a list of jewellers, artists, gourmet food producers, tailors and many more, who all produce in Perth (or Perthshire) and sell in the city. Many of them accept our fabulous Perth Card, too (see below). We hope you enjoy exploring the list and meeting our amazing makers!


The Bean Shop

Made inPerthThe Bean Shop was established in 2003 by husband and wife duo, John and Lorna Bruce, with the vision of delivering the finest coffee roasted in Scotland to the good people of Perth and the UK.

John and Lorna began hand-roasting coffee in the basement of their George Street shop, and the business has grown steadily since then, with online sales taking off in 2004.

The Bean Shop continues to develop blends and refine its coffee list to ensure that there’s always a selection of the finest speciality coffee beans available.


Social media: Follow The Bean Shop on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram

Where to buy: The Bean Shop is at 67 George Street, Perth, PH1 5LB

Contact: 01738 449955 or

Casella & Polegato

Casella & Polegato is a popular Italian artisanal bakery close to the city centre.

Supervised by master baker Denis Casella, everyone at Casella & Polegato values both tradition and innovation – some of the recipes and techniques are little changed from the time of their great-grandparents. But they also like trying new ideas with exciting flavours and combinations.

Casella & Polegato doesn’t try to compete with factory-made bread, because the team believes that what it produces is something that only comes from being hands-on and passionate. (And the prices are reasonable, too!)


Social media: Follow Casella & Polegato on Facebook or Twitter

Where to buy: Casella & Polegato is at 9-10 Whitefriars Street, Perth PH1 1PP

Contact: 01738 58 02 07 or

The Cheese Byre

Made in PerthThe Cheese Byre is an independent family-run business catering for dedicated cheese lovers and fans of speciality food.

Scottish cheese-makers offer a large selection of cheeses in a wide range of different textures and flavours, and the Cheese Byre’s aim is to bring to the Perthshire market some of the very best Scottish cheeses and accompaniments.


The Cheese Byre offers a tempting array of Perthshire produce, including:

  • Summer Harvest oils and dressings
  • Young’s Preserves chutneys and jellies
  • Kenmore Bakery oatcakes and shortbread
  • Aberfeldy Oatcakes


Social media: Follow The Cheese Byre on Facebook or Twitter

Where to buy: The Cheese Byre is at 52 Atholl Street, Perth PH1 5NN

Contact: 01738 270347 or

Inveralmond Brewery

Made in PerthYou could say Perth-based Inveralmond Brewery blazed a trail when it comes to locally produced craft beer. Set up before the worldwide craft beer explosion, Inveralmond and its small but highly trained team has now carved out a reputation for meticulously crafted, honest, straight-up brews.

This year the company, now owned by Innis & Gunn, celebrates 20 years in the business. Inveralmond’s most popular brands are Ossian, a pale golden beer, and Lia Fail, a darker malty beer.


Social media: Follow The Inveralmond Brewery on Facebook or Twitter

Where to buy: You can buy directly from The Inveralmond Brewery Limited, 22 Inveralmond Place, Perth, PH1 3TS, or in local shops such as Provender Brown
01738 449448 or

Murrays Bakers

Made in PerthA family business established in 1901, and now on the fourth generation in the hands of Linda Hill, Murrays Bakers pride themselves on fresh high-quality products at reasonable prices, with friendly staff, in a convenient location in Perth.

Murrays are well-known in Perth for many of their products including their bridies, sausage rolls and apple pies, and since 2015 their fame has spread worldwide after they were crowned Scotch Pie World Champions.


Social media: Follow Murrays Bakers on Facebook

Where to buy: Murrays Bakers are at 114 South Street, Perth PH2 8PA

Contact: 01738 624633 or email online

Perth Farmers’ Market

Made in PerthDid you know that Perth opened the first modern-day Farmers’ Market in Scotland? Since the first market in 1999, it’s grown in size and reputation and now hosts over 40 Perthshire stallholders every month. Products include cheeses, fresh bread, jams and pickles, meat, fish, drinks, fruit & veg, and confectionery. There are regular cooking demonstrations, too, which inspire and delight visitors.


Social media: Follow Perth Farmers’ Market on Facebook or Twitter

Where to buy: Perth Farmers’ Market takes place in King Edward Street, Perth, on the first Saturday of every month (except January) from 9am to 2pm.

Contact: 01738 582159 / 07732 483729 or

Provender Brown

Made in PerthProvender Brown is a hugely popular Perth delicatessen, selling a wide range of food and drink, as well as lunches and gourmet dinners freshly made in-store.

Owner Diane Brown is a great supporter of local producers, and the well-stocked and welcoming shop boasts a fantastic range of Perthshire artisanal suppliers, including:





  • Chocolate Truffles from the Wicked Chocolate Company
  • Whisky, gin and liqueurs from Morrison & Mackay, Bankfoot
  • Smoked salmon from Dunkeld Smokery, Dunkeld
  • Still and sparkling wine, cider and soft drinks from Cairn O’Mohr, Errol
  • Ale and Bitter from Strathbraan Brewery, Dunkeld
  • Gins from: Strathearn Distillery in Methven and Glenshee Craft Distillery in Bridge of Cally
  • Oils, dressings and vinegars from Summer Harvest, Madderty
  • Conserves, jellies and chutneys from Dalchonzie Fruit Farm, Comrie
  • Honey from Heather Hills Honey Farm, Bridge of Cally
  • Craft Mead from The Rookery, Blairgowrie
  • Cheese from Strathearn Cheese Company, Cultybraggan, Crieff
  • Oatcakes from The Handmade Oatcake Company, Crieff
  • Butter tablet and fudge from Gordon & Durward, Crieff
  • Smoked meats and game terrines from Rannoch Smokery, Kinloch Rannoch
  • Whisky from: John Dewar & Sons in Aberfeldy, Edradour Distillery in Pitlochry, Tullibardine Distillery in Blackford and Blair Atholl Distillery in Pitlochry

More Info:

Social media: Follow Provender Brown on Facebook and Twitter

Where to buy: Provender Brown is at 23 George Street, Perth PH1 5JY

Contact: 01738 587300 or by email online


 Byers & Co

Made in PerthByers and Co designs and makes beautiful contemporary jewellery and silverware from its workshop in Perth.

Owner Linda Byers designs and makes all pieces, specialising in silver, gold and platinum jewellery. Linda puts a minimalistic, contemporary spin on her design, taking inspiration from a variety of factors, mainly the natural world and the customers themselves.

She loves using interesting stones such as rough diamonds, coloured diamonds, one-off precious stones and a whole variety of semi-precious and non-precious stones (although every stone is precious to Linda!) She is happy to re-use customers’ own stones and/or metal in the designs.

Byers and Co also produces silverware such as drink vessels, table centres, chess sets, tea sets, candlesticks and more. These are produced on a commission basis – just contact Linda to discuss your ideas.


Social media: Follow Byers & Co on Facebook and Twitter

Where to buy: Byers & Co is at 50 George Street, Perth PH1 5JL


Cairncross of Perth

Made in Perth




Cairncross of Perth is known as the home of jewellery made from fine Scottish river pearls. (The pearl has been protected since 1998 but Cairncross is

licensed to use pearls sourced before then.) Their exquisite pearl jewellery can be commissioned in silver or gold in Cairncross’ own workshop.


Social media: Follow Cairncross of Perth on Facebook

Where to buy: Cairncross of Perth is at 18 St John Street, Perth PH1 5SR.

Contact: 01738 624367 or

Number Five

Made in Perth

Number Five is a shop and gallery offering an extensive selection of contemporary jewellery.

Resident goldsmith and designer Claire Donald creates a friendly, informal and relaxed atmosphere. Customers are welcome to browse the collection of pieces by the 50 or so carefully chosen makers.

The jewellery at Number Five is produced in a wide variety of materials to suit every taste, from brightly coloured acrylics, anodised titanium, stainless steel and aluminium, to silver and 18-carat gold.

Claire specialises in bespoke commission pieces, and has good relationships with all the makers, so can approach them to tailor any piece to individual requirements.


Social media: Follow Number Five on Facebook

Where to buy: No.5 is at 17 High Street, Perth PH1 5JS

Contact: 01738 634196 or  


Precious Sparkle

Made in PerthPrecious Sparkle is an enticing gift shop in the city centre. Owner Dawn Cotton Fuge designs and makes her own jewellery in her in-store workshop. As well as Dawn’s products, the shop sells interiors items, scarves, bags, cards, toys, candles, glassware and more, all with an emphasis on quality and style with many items being handmade and/or fair-trade.

Dawn’s also the director of The Scottish Bead Fair in Perth (held this year in August) and The Handmade Show, and promotes beading, jewellery-making and handmade crafts in Scotland.

 More Info:

Social media: Follow Precious Sparkle on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest

Where to buy: Precious Sparkle is at 10 Charlotte Street, Perth PH1 5LL

Contact: 01738 630740 or

Silver Linings

Made in Perth Jewellery designer Kyley Campbell opened Silver Linings Jewellery Design Studio in March 2016 after running Kyley Campbell Jewellery for over 10 years.

Alongside Kyley’s own distinctive pieces, Silver Linings has a wide variety of other jewellery, art and gifts from Perth and Perthshire, including artists Diana King (jewellery), Sarah Halliday (prints), Tony Simpson (wooden bowls) and Luna James (model houses)

 More Info:

Social media: Follow Silver Linings on Facebook

Where to buy: Silver Linings is at 13 High Street, Perth PH1 5JS

Contact: 01738 443620 or


Elegance of Perth

Made in PerthElegance of Perth offers a high-quality bespoke hat-making service. The shop stocks a comprehensive range of hats, fascinators and cocktail hats for all occasions. The in-store milliners, with over 40 years’ experience between them, are on hand to advise on shapes and colours that will suit their customers.

Elegance of Perth designs and makes hats to customers’ requirements, giving each person a unique piece. No colour is impossible, as the milliners can dye to match any outfit.


Social media: Follow Elegance of Perth on Facebook

Where to buy: Elegance of Perth is at 17 Atholl Street, Perth PH1 5NH

Contact: 01738 630415 or email online

Eva Christie

Made in PerthEva is one of the city’s best-known knitters, and has encouraged huge numbers of Perth people, young and old, to pick up their needles and enjoy the craft.

She creates unique wearable pieces of art and specialises in contemporary accessories using traditional stitches, drawing inspiration from her childhood among the glens and sea lochs of the West Coast of Scotland.

Eva offers tuition in therapeutic knitting, yarn parties and consultation on community art projects. She has produced garments for catwalk shows and even made a scarf for Basil Brush when he co-hosted the Christmas Lights Switch-On in Perth in 2016.

Eva’s largest current project is as Director of Perth Festival of Yarn, which this year will take place at the Dewars Centre, on 10 September 2017.


Social media: Follow Eva on Twitter, Facebook or YouTube

Where to buy: You can buy Eva’s hand-knitted accessories, knitting kits and hand-dyed yarns at Perth Museum and Art Gallery or by contacting Eva directly.

Contact Eva:

Hat in the Cat

The Hat in the Cat is a unique studio and shop, making and selling hand-crafted hats, textiles and accessories, and running one-day hat-making workshops.

Master milliner and internationally renowned textile artist Jeanette Sendler and teaching associate Alison Mountain use traditional methods to produce hand-made, high-quality products that are unique and individual.

Customers can buy what they see in the shop or commission pieces (preferably by appointment).

Hat in the Cat also makes period costumes and hats for events, theatre shows and re-enactments.


Social media: Follow The Hat in the Cat on Facebook

Where to buy: The Hat in the Cat is at 2 Main Street, Bridgend, Perth PH2 7HB.

Contact: 01738 624213 or

Scottish Sporrans

Made in Perth Scottish Sporrans is a professional sporran-making company with over 20 years’ experience of handcrafting high-quality custom-made leather products.

Owner Janet Eagleton MBE, her husband Hamish and son Marcus, share their time between making products in their home workshop and running their shop in Perth’s George Street. The company has produced goods for some well-known clients including Prince Charles and Samuel L Jackson.

Marcus has introduced new ideas into the business and is the designer and maker of their unique sporran handbags, which are very popular.


Where to buy: Janet Eagleton & Son’s Scottish Sporrans is at 39 George Street, Perth PH1 5LB

Contact: 01738 447187 / 07876 764709 or


Blues & Browns

Made in PerthBlues & Browns was established in Perth, Scotland by Kairen Alexis Ruse in 2002 with a simple philosophy: “to create beautifully tailored clothes which harmonise and compliment the female silhouette regardless of her age”.

The company’s Wendyhouse Workshop manufactures everything from hats to intricately tailored coats in robust tweeds and wool to exquisite celebration outfits in the finest silks and velvets, all under the watchful eye of Master Tailor Melinda Juhasz and her team.

Blues & Browns’ bespoke service offers their discerning customers individual attention, an impeccably hand-tailored fit, sumptuous and elegant fabrics and the meticulous quality of craftsmanship.


Social media: Follow Blues & Browns on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram

Where to buy: Blues & Browns is at 19-21 South Street, Perth PH2 8PG

Contact: 01738 626526 or



Jardine Gallery & Workshop

Julian Jardine established Jardine Gallery & Workshop in his home town of Perth in 2008. He makes and sells his own pieces in the gallery, specialising in ceramics of animals and fantastical creatures.

Jardine Gallery holds regular quarterly exhibitions of work from a wide range of artists, based mainly around nature, wildlife and organic forms. The gallery also has regular workshops for both children and adults, which are extremely popular.


Social media: Follow Jardine Gallery & Workshop on Facebook

Where to buy: Jardine Gallery is at 45 New Row, Perth PH1 5QA

Contact: 01783 621836 or contact online

Perthshire Open Studios

Made in PerthPerthshire Open Studios is an annual nine-day event held in September. Artists and makers across Perth & Kinross open up their studios so that the public can view and buy their work.

Launched in 2008, Perthshire Open Studios is a Community Interest Company and not-for-profit organisation, making a significant contribution to the local economy and generating local community art and craft events throughout the year.

Social media: Follow Perthshire Open Studios on Twitter
Where to buy: Check out the Perthshire Open Studios website for a list of studios (2017 information will be added soon)
Contact: By email online

The Picture Frame Maker

Made in PerthWith over 20 years of experience in the art and framing industry, The Picture Frame Maker offers an excellent framing service as well as a high-quality art gallery to suit everyone’s needs and tastes.

The friendly and reliable team aims to provide all customers with a comprehensive framing service that incorporates their ideas and suggestions.

Where to buy: The Picture Frame Maker’s gallery and workshop are at 38 Skinnergate, Perth, PH1 5JH.


Contact: 01738 451 724 or

Tayberry Gallery

Made in PerthTayberry Gallery sells unique and ever-changing collections of British-made art and design, including jewellery, ceramics, wood, textiles, illustrations, paintings, glass, sculpture, prints, cards and more.

Co-owner Sarah Spalding creates design-led jewellery from her Perthshire workshop and studio and sells them in the gallery.

Sarah offers various collections using different techniques and ideas, with precious metals such as silver, gold and platinum and, at times, gemstones.


Social media: Follow Tayberry Gallery on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram

Where to buy: Tayberry Gallery is at 19 Princes Street, Perth PH2 8NG

Contact: 01738 440899 or

Frames Gallery

Made in PerthFrames Gallery is a family-run business, established in 1979. It has an enviable reputation for showing some of the best in contemporary Scottish art and craft, including work by Perthshire artists, alongside an award-winning picture framing workshop.


Social media: Follow Frames Gallery on Facebook or Twitter

Where to buy: Frames Gallery is at 10 Victoria Street, Perth, Scotland, PH2 8LW

Contact: 01738 631085 or



The Original Chair Company

Made in PerthThe Original Chair Company was created in 2006 by Kate MacKenzie, who has a passion for chair design and interior design.

The Original Chair Company refurbishes antique armchairs and sofas, and provides a bespoke furniture service where chairs and sofas are made to customers’ designs.

The company’s upholsterers are experts in taking pieces of antique furniture and giving them new life, creating a family heirloom that can be passed down through the generations.



Social media: Follow The Original Chair Company on Facebook

Where to buy: The Original Chair Company is at Unit 62G, Perth Aerodrome, Perth, PH2 6PL
01738 551600 or

The Perth Card

Made in PerthThe Perth Card is the ultimate “Made in Perth” product, as you can spend it in over 65 outlets in the city. That means you can support local businesses and find yourself a unique Perth product, gift, night out or fun-filled experience.

It’s ideal as a Christmas or birthday gift, as a leaving present, or as a thank-you or bonus to your staff!



Social media: Follow The Perth Card on Facebook or Twitter

Where to buy: Online at The Perth Card website, or pop in to Scottish Seasons or McCash’s Country Store

Contact: 01738 444 376 or

Perth Concert Hall / True Gents

Perth Concert Hall, run by Horsecross Arts, is a keen supporter of local talent. On Friday 3rd March 2017, Perthshire folk rockers True Gents are supporting the legendary Red Hot Chilli Pipers in what promises to be a show so hot it should carry its own health warning!

Part of Perth Concert Hall’s Celtic Sessions, this gig is not to be missed, and you can even hang out in the foyer bar for a tune and a drink at an informal music session after each show.



Social media: Follow Horsecross on Facebook

Where to buy: Online on the Horsecross website, or call/visit the Box Office.

Contact: Box Office on 01738 621031

Days Out from Perth – Birnam and Dunkeld

Days Out from Perth – Birnam and Dunkeld

Birnam and Dunkeld. Dunkeld and Birnam. Two towns so close together that they share road signs, a website and a local newsletter. They’re both known as hubs for the creative arts and crafts, as well as for their Highland beauty and community spirit.

So, for our first Day Out from Perth, we couldn’t visit one without the other! They’re only a 20-minute drive from Perth, which is ideal for a day out from the city.

We set out on a mild February day to see what was on offer. And, as 2017 is Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, we’ll make sure that we include some historical sights.

9.40am – Leave Perth City Centre

The weather is a little drizzly as we head along the A9 and it later turns out to be rainy, cloudy and finally sunny with bright blue skies. So I’m glad we have a mix of indoor and outdoor activities planned!

10.00am – Chattan Tea Room & Post Office, Birnam

We start our day out in Birnam, a pretty town established in the Victorian era on the bank of the River Tay. If you studied Shakespeare’s Macbeth at school, you’ll remember Birnam Wood striking fear into the heart of our tragic hero – more on that later.

Our first stop is Chattan Tea Room, a quirky “trading post”-style building which also serves as the village post office. Owner Kelly Annets and her staff welcome us warmly when we arrive, and we order coffees, scones and pancakes.

We ask for jam and, to our delight, we’re brought a selection of three classic home-made conserves – delicately flavoured apple-and-clove jelly, zingy lemon curd and smooth, tangy rhubarb jam. I feel like I’m back at my great-auntie’s house in Deeside 30 years ago.

The scones are satisfyingly large (nobody wants a small scone!) yet light and delicious. The pancake gets a resounding thumbs-up from our daughter.

As well as being a café and post office, Chattan also sells gifts, crafts and jewellery, local eggs, greeting cards and old-fashioned sweeties in jars.

Find out more about Chattan Tea Room and Post Office

Energised by our lovely snacks, we move on to our next stop. Birnam Arts contains an exhibition space, a theatre/concert/cinema venue, meeting rooms, a popular café, a shop and a library.

Meeting Peter Rabbit

It’s home to the permanent Beatrix Potter exhibition and garden, so we start there. Beatrix spent summers at Eastwood House in nearby Dunkeld as a child, and grew to love the surrounding area, sketching the fungi, flowers and wildlife. On one holiday there in 1893, Beatrix brought to life the characters of Peter Rabbit and Jeremy Fisher, beloved by millions of children ever since.

The exhibition is an entrancing glimpse into the fictional worlds that Potter created. We dress up as Peter, Jeremy and Mrs Tiggywinkle (sorry, we must have deleted those photos!), put on a puppet show, read books, do jigsaws, and play in the pretend shop, washroom and Victorian classroom. We then wander round the little garden and spot the bronze sculptures of Peter and his animal pals.

Moving Minds: the lives of Gypsy/Travellers in Scotland today

Next in Birnam Arts we go upstairs to Moving Minds, an engaging exhibition about the lives of Gypsy/Traveller people in Scotland. Described by broadcaster Lesley Riddoch as “an antidote to My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding”, it’s a mix of personal stories, artefacts and photographs of loved objects. It offers genuine and moving insights into the lives, loves, work and everyday challenges of modern-day Travellers.

The exhibition runs until Tuesday 28th February and is free of charge.

Find out about upcoming exhibitions and events at Birnam Arts

11.45am – The Birnam Oak

We have time before lunch for a walk with the dog, so we go in search of the Birnam Oak and its neighbour the Birnam Sycamore.

It’s an easy five-minute stroll from the main road – just follow “Oak Road” behind the Birnam Inn to the riverside (wear your wellies if it’s rainy).

When we approached these two trees, we were so taken aback by their size that we just stopped and stared. The Birnam Oak is so large that at least five of its mighty boughs are held up by wooden crutches like telegraph poles. The Birnam Sycamore is over 300 years old and the Oak is much older, although its exact age is unknown.

These trees are thought to be the sole survivors of the great forest that once straddled the banks and hillsides of the River Tay. The forest is celebrated in Shakespeare’s Macbeth, when the three witches prophesise, “Macbeth shall never vanquished be / Until Great Birnam wood to high Dunsinane Hill / Shall come against him”. Macbeth laughs this off, but he is defeated when the advancing army camouflages itself with the branches of trees from the wood.

Find out more about the Birnam Oak and Sycamore


12.30pm – The Taybank, Dunkeld

After all that exploring it’s time to head to Dunkeld, Birnam’s next-door neighbour, for lunch. We cross the famous Dunkeld Bridge, designed by Scottish engineer Thomas Telford, and go round the corner to The Taybank, a bar and kitchen well-known for its live music.

There’s outdoor seating near the river, but as it’s February we stay inside by the wood-burning stove and order warming soup with a delicious selection of cheese and biscuits. The Taybank is dog-friendly and the barman kindly brings ours a bowl of water.

The waitress tells us that the Taybank is undergoing some renovation to add a new restaurant and music room upstairs, so we’ll be back soon to see how it’s all turned out, and hear some great live music.

Find out more about the Taybank

1.45pm – Going Pottie, Dunkeld


The little person in our party (and, let’s admit it, the big people too) loves any kinds of arty-crafty activities, so we stroll to nearby Cathedral Street where we find our next destination.

Going Pottie is a charming workshop where you can paint a ready-made pottery piece in acrylic or glaze paints. There’s a wide selection including ornaments, mugs and goblets, clocks, hanging decorations and money-boxes.

There’s another group of four in the workshop – it can comfortably hold 12 – so we settle down next to them and choose our pieces to paint. Owner Julie brings us a tray of over 30 coloured acrylic paints, a jar of paintbrushes, some painting pinnies and a hairdryer (Yes, really! It helps the acrylics to dry quickly).

It’s a lovely relaxing experience, and soon we’re all absorbed in our designs. We end up with a sea turtle, a brown cat and a slightly sinister-looking duck (see photo).

When we finish, Julie asks if we’d like to add glitter to our ornaments. Of course we say yes, and she covers them with a sparkly lustre at no extra cost.

Prices start at £6 per piece – for an activity that can keep everyone amused for up to an hour, I’d say that’s great value for money. We’ll definitely be back, as I spotted a star decoration that’d be great for the Christmas tree…

Find out more about Going Pottie

2.30pm – Dunkeld Cathedral and riverside stroll


The sun has come out for us, so we walk along the street to the grand and beautiful Dunkeld Cathedral.

Built in stages between 1260 and 1501, the cathedral was partly destroyed during the Reformation in 1560 but the chancel is roofed and is now the parish church for Sunday worship. There’s a little museum, with some interesting artefacts including a Pictish stone dating from the 800s. The rest of the cathedral is ruinous and is in the care of Historic Scotland.

We take a look inside the cathedral at the beautiful stained glass East Window, the intricately card wooden fretwork and the magnificent tomb of Alexander Stewart, 1st Earl of Buchan, known as the Wolf of Badenoch.

After our visit we stroll along the river enjoying the afternoon sun shining through the evergreen trees.

Find out more about Dunkeld Cathedral

3.15pm – The Scottish Deli, Dunkeld


Days out from PerthWe need to pick up a gift for a friend, so we go back to Atholl Street in Dunkeld to the Scottish Deli, a café and treasure trove of foodie delights. We pick up some locally made oatcakes, strawberry jam and chocolate – yum!

Find out more about the Scottish Deli

3.45pm – The Birnam Reader


Days out from Perth

It’s nearly time to head home, but earlier in the day we’d spotted a sign for an independent bookshop near Birnam Arts. As we’re all keen bookworms we decide to pop in.

The Birnam Reader opened just before Christmas 2016 and sells a wide selection of second-hand books and CDs at very reasonable prices. As if that wasn’t enough, you can also buy a coffee and cake while you’re browsing and reading.

We all choose our books (owner Beth Ross-Gillies even allows our daughter to read the kids’ books with no pressure to buy) and flick through them as we tuck into our delicious coffees and cakes (vegan and gluten-free options often available!).

Find out more about the Birnam Reader

It’s the perfect way to finish off our Day Out from Perth.

4.30pm – back to Perth

We’ve had a fantastic day in Birnam and Dunkeld – a rich mix of history, fun, culture, the outdoors and, of course, food and drink. The short drive back to Perth means we’re home before 5pm.

And there’s still a lot more to do and see in the area – see “Other things to do”, below, for a selection.

We’ll be back soon with a brand-new Day Out from Perth – so watch this space!

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