Enjoy the heritage on Clydesdale’s doorstep

CAVLP is staging inaugural Heritage Festival from May 7 to May 15. (Pic Archibald Photography)
CAVLP is staging inaugural Heritage Festival from May 7 to May 15. (Pic Archibald Photography)

The treasure trove of hidden history and beautiful landscapes bursting from the gorges of the Clyde and Avon Valley will be celebrated at the area’s inaugural Heritage Festival.

Clyde and Avon Valley Heritage Festival – from Saturday, May 7, to Sunday, May 15 – has been organised in collaboration with the Heritage Lottery Fund.

It is supported by Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership (CAVLP), local heritage groups, Overton Farm and Lanark Development Trust.

The festival kicks off at the ever popular family-focused Blossom Day at Overton Farm, on Saturday, May 7, from 9am to 1pm.

Visitors will be able to shop for fresh local produce and crafts at the Farmers Market and craft fair, enjoy exhibitions of Clyde Valley heritage and a school art competition, as well as meet spring chicks and lambs.

A programme of free spring walks has also been lined up from Monday, May 9, to Sunday, May 15.

Walkers will get the chance to join expert guides on walks through an Area of Great Landscape Value (AGLV), one of the few places in Scotland where the geology and landscape have played such an important role in its development.

Visited for centuries, it includes a patchwork of woodlands, stunning geological features, castles, estates, riverside settlements, orchards and market gardening heritage.

Sarah O’Sullivan, CAVLP communications officer, said: “From twilight trundles in remote woodlands to midday meanders around old estates, and even an open day at an orchard, there’s plenty to choose from.

“The walks are a great way for families to get to know the local landscape and its unique characteristics better, as well as find out about some of CAVLP’s key projects locally.”

Meet the real life heroes who inspired countless legends including Langoureth, Queen of Cadzow, and Myrddin, the wild man of the woods with South Lanarkshire Council’s countryside ranger service at Chatelherault on Monday, May 9, at 7pm.

Or perhaps you’d like a secluded dusk ramble down Cleghorn Glen, near Lanark – a pristine example of the ancient woodlands that cloak the Clyde Valley– with Scottish Natural Heritage on Tuesday, May 11, at 6.45pm.

Book now to avoid disappointment at www.cavlp.eventbrite.co.uk.

Two local heroes will bring the festival to a rousing close, with the Robert Owen bicentenary celebrations at New Lanark on May 13 and 14 and Wallace Weekend in Lanark on May 14 and 15.

Don’t miss the free archaeological sessions taking place as part of the Wallace Weekend.

For details on tile-making and traditional ceramics workshops, email cavlp.heritage@gmail.com or call 01555 661555.