Love Scotland is a podcast series from the National Trust for Scotland.
From coastlines to castles, art to architecture, wildlife to wilderness, the National Trust for Scotland cares for and protects some of Scotland's most significant places and spaces, allowing them to be enjoyed today while protecting them for future generations.
Hosted by former BBC Reporting Scotland anchor Jackie Bird, and featuring experts and enthusiasts from across the country, each episode delves deep into the detail of the Trust’s people and places to showcase how everything they do is for the love of Scotland.
You can find out more about the National Trust for Scotland's work and how to support them at http://www.nts.org.uk.
Nicknamed mountain blackbirds, ring ouzels have become a rare sight in Scotland. The migrating species has seen a huge population decline in recent decades, mostly due to habitat loss. However, Ben Lawers National Nature Reserve is an outpost for population recovery, thanks to long-term conservation efforts.
Our host Jackie Bird heads to Ben Lawers to meet Andrew Warwick, the site’s ranger, in search of these elusive mountain birds. As they scan the skies for ouzels, they discuss the pioneering conservation work that has helped to reverse habitat decline and offers new hope for the future.
Meanwhile, we also join Andrew Painting at Mar Lodge Estate to search for another vulnerable species, the dotterel, amongst other mountain birds.
How does the National Trust for Scotland care for the many objects in its collections? Lesley Scott is one of the conservators constantly battling against environmental factors to preserve artefacts, furniture and artworks for future generations.
Jackie meets her at the House of the Binns to get a sneak peek at a major renovation project which is currently being carried out there. The 17th century home has been closed to the public since the start of the pandemic, but work is now being done to prepare it for reopening.
In their conversation, they discuss how conservation work is done and what challenges must be overcome. How does modern science help a conservator? What does a renovation project involve? And what can visitors expect to see when the House of the Binns opens its doors once more?
For the latest information on the House of the Binns’ reopening, visit www.nts.org.uk/visit/places/house-of-binns.
In kids we trust
What does the future of the National Trust for Scotland look like? To mark the launch of the Trust’s new strategy – Nature, Beauty and Heritage for Everyone – we united young eco reps with Chief Executive Phil Long.
In a special episode of Love Scotland, three primary school pupils from Glasgow meet up with Phil to discuss the environment, and what can be done to protect it. Their conversation, in the city that hosted COP26 less than six months ago, touches on sustainability and what role the Trust can play in preserving Scotland’s climate and natural spaces.
How will the Trust take on the challenges of climate change? What is already being done? And what can be achieved before the Trust’s centenary in 10 years’ time?
To find out more about the new strategy, visit the website.
Take a listen…
The real history of Scotland's witches
The witch trials of the sixteenth, seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries form one of the darkest chapters in Scotland’s history. More than 2,500 people – the vast majority of them women – were executed and more than 4,000 accused of witchcraft during this time, and yet their stories have largely gone untold.
Recently, though, that has started to change. Earlier this year, on International Women’s Day, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon issued an apology to all those who had been persecuted. And last year, the National Trust for Scotland published a report detailing the links between its properties and the witch trials.
Dr Ciaran Jones, the lead researcher and author of the report, joins Jackie Bird to discuss his findings and what they say about Scotland’s wider cultural and societal issues at the time.
Hornel in Japan
In an exciting and invigorating year for Glasgow’s art scene, Jackie heads to Pollok House to find out more about one of the city’s most prominent artists of the late 19th century. Edward Atkinson Hornel was a Glasgow Boy – a group of radical young painters who transformed the city’s art and planted the seed of modernism. Inspired by the work of Dutch and French realism, the Boys found both commercial and critical success with landscapes and portraits that displayed everyday life.
A new exhibition at Pollok House tells the story of Hornel’s two visits to Japan and the work he created there.
How did these visits shape his point of view? What do they tell us of western views of Asian nations at the time? And what fuelled Glasgow’s close artistic links to Japan? Take a listen…
For more information about Love Scotland, go to: www.thebiglight.com/lovescotland
Keeping the outdoors great
As wildfires take their toll on Scottish mountainsides, it's more important than ever that we all take care of our wonderful wilderness. Jackie heads to Glencoe to meet ranger Scott McCombie and hear how the National Trust for Scotland’s dedicated staff can help you learn about – and look after – the great outdoors.
Hear about how you can see everything from native forests to golden eagles on a trip to Glencoe and take part in a guided walk or even a Land Rover safari to get as close as possible to Scotland’s outstanding natural heritage. Ranger Scott McCombie also talks us through the steps he and his team are making to help ensure the great outdoors stays great, as more of us take the time to enjoy what Scotland has to offer. There’s so much to see and do at Glencoe and at all of the Trust’s wild places. Head to their website at nts.org.uk to find out more (and even book a slot on that Land Rover tour…).
Fantastic podcast, rich in history and love hearing about the various roles and locations of the NTS. Jackie is a great interviewer and expertly guides each guest to talk about their fascinating work.
A great listen
A really well presented and interesting podcast. Great stories and interesting people in every episode
Interesting, well put together podcast.