Blair House

 

Generations of children, including me, fell in love with nature at the Blair House in Glen Doll, Angus. When the school had to sell it in 2014, and no-one else was in a position to rescue it as a field centre, there was almost no question that my family and I should buy it, refurbish it and reopen it for educational and environmental groups. In May 2016, a few weeks before opening, a fire which spread from the neighbouring property burned it to the ground. The rebuild is beginning and I hope to open new Blair House before the end of 2017. It has its own Facebook page where you can follow the latest updates.

Articles

New Blair House begins

It has been a very long journey, but after a great deal of planning and work by architects Tom Morton and Oliver Goddard, work has begun at last on New Blair House. It has almost immediately been delayed again by snow, but work is still being done on the wooden construction in builder Barry Greenhill’s workshop so watch … Continue reading “New Blair House begins”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on New Blair House begins

Meeting the Botanists

I had an exciting meeting today with David Knott, curator of collections at the Botanics; my friend Dr Alan Elliott also at the Botanics; Henry Marsh, former head of English at the Edinburgh Academy and Glen Doll botanist of 40 years; and Tom Morton of Arc Architects who is going to build the new Blair House. We … Continue reading “Meeting the Botanists”

Posted in Blair House, environment | 1 Comment

Blair House Redux

There’s one article I failed to post here, which made it on to the Facebook page, which was this. I hope everybody who knows Blair House has heard this news already, but what was more astonishing than the news was the little figure at the end which shows the number of people who read the story: … Continue reading “Blair House Redux”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on Blair House Redux

Harling and moss

We took a new route to Blair House this week, coming round north of Kirriemuir, which gave us a star Macintosh-Patrickesque view straight up the glen. What I didn’t know taking this photo was that somewhere on top of that ridge of hills, Barry the builder was taking the opportunity to walk the 15 miles up … Continue reading “Harling and moss”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on Harling and moss

Memories and Anticipations

I have dragged myself away from my friend Lucy Lawrie’s new story, The Last Day I Saw Her, to write a much-needed update on Blair House. Lucy was my great Blair House childhood friend and we have been longing to get back there together for years. And The Last Day I Saw Her, I discover, … Continue reading “Memories and Anticipations”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on Memories and Anticipations

Refurbishment underway

It’s taken 18 months, at least 7 experts (the Bat and Freshwater Pearl Mussel ecologists were my favourites), at the serious illnesses of 2 of the team to get to this point, but Blair House is at last being refurbished. The contractor is Barry Greenhill of Forfar and he is due to finish in early … Continue reading “Refurbishment underway”

Posted in Blair House | 2 Comments

Forty years at Blair House by George Harris

  Eleanor’s father George Harris, who taught history at the Edinburgh Academy 1973-2010, remembers forty years of expeditions to the glen. There’s at least one of my paintings of Blair House hanging in the Staff Room at the Edinburgh Academy. I left it behind when I retired, as a reminder of a great place that … Continue reading “Forty years at Blair House by George Harris”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on Forty years at Blair House by George Harris

Blair House Plans

As plans for the Blair House refurbishment are now well-developed and as people are so generously supporting it through the crowdfund, it seems a good time to provide a bit more information about what these plans are. I would add the disclaimer that none of them are set in stone, but they are well advanced … Continue reading “Blair House Plans”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on Blair House Plans

Glen Doll Forest

One upon a time, there was a dark, dark moor, and on that moor there was a dark, dark wood, and in that wood there was a dark, dark house… Blair House, Glen Doll, Angus So began a beautifully-illustrated children’s book. I loved it because after the spookiness its ending is all homely, and because … Continue reading “Glen Doll Forest”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on Glen Doll Forest

The Great Glen Doll Meadow

I’ve rescued and am refurbishing an old independent school field centre in Angus. It’s a super house with which I have a long connection, but Glen Doll is even greater: a forest surrounded by a mighty Cairngorm plateau with thirteen Munros within reach. But greatest of all are its flowers. One corner, Corrie Fee, is … Continue reading “The Great Glen Doll Meadow”

Posted in Blair House | Comments Off on The Great Glen Doll Meadow