Afternoon Tea, all welcome

Afternoon Tea InvitationSave Straiton for Scotland are having an Afternoon Tea in the McCandlish Hall this Sunday, 23 July at 2pm. As well as teas, coffees and delicious baking there’ll be homemade lemonade, Pimms and some fizz. Of course there’ll be the usual superb raffle!

The event is to celebrate their recent success. Come along to find out about how their campaign is progressing. What they hope will be the final wind farm application is due to go to a Public Inquiry in October and there’ll be up to date information on this.

Both visitors to Straiton and residents are very welcome. Your attendance and support is appreciated.

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Hills, Garden and Gorge – plus an Osprey!

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Tuseday’s walk, one of 29 organised by the Newton Stewart Walking Festival did not disappoint. Starting from Straiton 18 walkers with 3 guides tackled the Monument first getting to the top to enjoy some fine views before setting off across the moor to Auchenroy Hill. Our guide mentioning it might be “soft underfoot” which translates as “you’ll soon be up to your ankles in water”.

10-swimming-pondWe had good views of the Galloway Hills to the south and our knowledgeable guide told us both the ranges and names of the mountains. A pleasant walk down to Craigengillan Gardens where we had an excellent guided tour from Fi McLelland. An amazing garden, all the more interesting as it’s in the process of being uncovered. The rock garden was designed by James Pullman & Sons (usually kept busy designing for royal residences) and features pools deep enough to swim in, Peak District stone, cascades, water channels and seemingly miles of stone pathways interspersed with stone terraces. There are some stunningly beautiful trees including a 600 year old yew on the front lawn.

12-gorge-walkThe final section of the walk was up the dramatic gorge at Ness Glen. Here the path closely follows the river as it tumbles down from Loch Doon, the steep sides are covered in an amazing variety of mosses and ferns. Towering cliffs and steep sides make this one of the best gorge walks in southern Scotland.

The icing on the cake was seeing the female osprey sitting on the nest at Loch Doon across from the Roundhouse Café. The owner has thoughtfully provided a scope set up for patrons to view the nest. A delicious hot coffee was very welcome too. For the latest information on the Ospreys click onto the Facebook page Visit Loch Doon

Newton Stewart WalkFest – 8th to 14th May

Walker enjoying the view of a loch in the Galloway Hills

There are almost 30 guided walks varying from gentle rambles exploring pilgrimage sites in Whithorn to the challenging route along the Awfu Hand taking in the summits of seven hills. Guides are knowledgeable in history, plant and animal life which enrich the experience. Walks cost from just £5 and include transport to and from the start and finish points. What better way to get fitter, enjoy the outdoors and gain an insight into this beautiful part of Scotland?

Ness Glen 2-smlThis year a new route starts from Straiton, climbs up to the Monument, follows the ridge to the Doon Valley, takes in the remarkable gardens at Craigengillan, then follows the spectacular gorge path through Ness Glen finishing at the Roundhouse Café at Loch Doon.

In addition there are evening events including talks, slide shows and whisky tasting to celebrate 2015 – Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink.

Click here to go to the website for more information and to book.

Spring Fair, 14th March 11 – 4

Crocus

Now an established feature in the calendar this year’s Spring Fair promises to be something a bit special. There are many stallholders participating for the first time along with firm favourites. Tea and coffee will be served and entry is free.

Stalls include Woodcrafts, Silver and Handmade Jewellery, Candles, Handbags, Cheese and Chilli Jam, Spa Products, Whisky Tasters and much more!

Cycling the Ayrshire Alps

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cyclist picThe latest issue of the Cyclist Magazine features an 8-page article on the joys of road cycling around the coast at Girvan and Turnberry, inland to Barr and into the Galloway Forest Park at Nic O Balloch. It’s a great piece, full of humour, interesting facts and super photos. You can read the full article in pdf format here

Mentioned in the article is the Ayrshire Alps, a group which aims to map and signpost all the routes in the hill roads of South Ayrshire and have created Scotland’s first Road Cycling Park. Their excellent and informative website, www.ayrshirealps.org is well worth a look. It has a piste map showing Black (difficult) routes through to Red (challenging), Blue (moderate) and Green (easy) along with villages to stop on route.

Life on the Ocean Wave

jayGet on your costumes for this year’s Funday and Hill Race on Saturday 30th August and enjoy Life on the Ocean Wave; the theme for 2014.
This year attractions include: Water Walkers, Bouncy Castle, Hurl the Sheaf, Fabulous Fraser, Face Painting, Photo Competition, Hurl the Handbag, 5-A-Side Football, Beer Tent, Fish and Chips plus an array of stalls with arts, crafts and charity fundraisers.

Competitions

Fancy Dress
For all ages
Categories – Pre School, Primary, 12 yrs and over
Fantastic Prizes will be given for the best Fancy Dress in each category.
We hope to see the park awash with sea creatures, pirates, sailors and all other “life on the ocean wave”.

lesley-beverley

Best Themed Photograph
For all ages
Winning photographers will have their photo enlarged on canvas and receive a photo album.
We are looking for “Life on the Ocean Wave” themed photos.
Entries should be 6”x4” and have your name, contact phone number and age (over 16s need only write ‘Over 16’)
Your photo should be entered by 2pm on the Funday, if you cannot make it on the day please leave your entry in the shop for the attention of Jen Williams.

Themed Plant Pots
Last day for entries was Saturday 23rd, the winner will be announced on Funday.

For more information please contact Jen Williams at jen-williams@hotmail.co.uk

Booty Galore!

Sitting in front of horsebox with a mass of stuff for saleVisitors to Straiton on Sunday were treated to a huge array of car booters with a mind-boggling range of items for sale – the old favourites were there; toys, jewellery, bric-a-brac, old tools and gardening equipment. Some of the more unusual items included juggling batons, vintage handbags, chimney pots, busts (the marble sort) and a garden shed!

Three women with clothes for sale

The sun shone, just about continuously, and all seemed happy with their purchases, especially those who made it to the Hall for a delicious cream tea. The proceeds from stalls and the teas will be going to the Fun Day & Hill Race on August 30th. Another great family day out and if you don’t have children there’s plenty for adults to enjoy as well.