Saturday, 30 October 2010

Scottish Thistle Awards 2010

As mentioned before, this year I reached the final three in the category for 'Small Business Extra Mile award' in the annual Scottish Thistle Awards. Yesterday afternoon we left for Edinburgh and decided to use the Park and Ride at Queensferry and take the bus into Edinburgh, much easier and quicker than negotiating unknown streets in Edinburgh!, I would highly recommend anyone to use this facility. The bus stopped pretty much opposite where we were staying, so we checked in then had a wander to find the Edinburgh International Conference Centre where the event was being staged, it was only a 10 minute stroll. Had a look at a couple of shops then back to the hotel for a quick change and polish up. The event started at 6.15pm with a drinks reception then we went upstairs to the auditorium for the awards presented by Ronni Ancona. The whole presentation was superb, we didn't win though, the winner in my category was another B&B in Mull called Seaview. After the awards dinner was served downstairs, after dinner entertainment by Ms Ancona finishing off with a ceilidh. I have to say the whole evening was brilliant and I have a lovely certificate to hang on my wall, maybe try again next year! Here is a small video of our Bed and Breakfast Gilmore House minute of fame.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Sustainable Tourism

Today I attended a workshop run by Visit Scotland called 'Sustainable Tourism'. It was held in the local Altamount Hotel, so as it is not far away I walked over. It was a super workshop, there was an introduction, a short film then talks by various people. First talk was about Scottish business in the community, then a case study by Gleneagles hotel, a talk by Keep Scotland Beautiful finishing off with the Energy Saving Trust. I came away with lot's of useful information which I can implement in the B&B. I like to think I carry out quite a lot of 'Green' measures, but there is so much more I can and will do - watch this space!

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

QuarryMill Woodland Park

En route somewhere today I stopped at Quarrymill Woodland Park, which is on the left before you reach Perth just after the entrance to Scone Palace. Unfortunately not the best of weather for a walk, but still a lovely place. There is also a coffee shop, which is open from April until September. As a dog owner I was immediately impressed by the provision of dog waste bags around the park as well as disposal bins. There are lots of places to sit as well as a dedicated barbecue area and a lovely duck pond. A nice place to stop on your way to Perth.

Monday, 25 October 2010

Blair in Bloom 2010

That time of year again for the prize-giving for Blair in Bloom Awards. It was held again in the Royal Hotel this evening with the presentations being made by Sir William MacPherson. Naturally I was highly delighted to have won the best garden for establishment providing tourist accommodation and have a nice shiny shield to keep for the year!

The Knockie on a clear day

Back in July 2008 I blogged about the walk up the back of the town called 'The Knockie'. Unfortunately that day it was very misty, so as promised here are some pictures from today when you could see for miles with snow peaked mountains in the distance.

Sunday, 24 October 2010


A couple of weeks ago at the Wild Connections Festival in Dunkeld one of my children tried out the mini-orienteering course they had set up, well we all tried it out! A lady from Tayside Orienteers phoned the other night to invite her along to an event at Kinnoull Hill and Woodland Park in Perth today, so off we went today on a cold but beautiful day. There seemed to be a good turn out of people, both beginners and the experts. I mentioned before in a previous blog that Kinnoull has permanent orienteering markers. There is now an initiative called Woodland Challenge with four areas with permanent markers, the one at Kinnoull, one at St Magdalene's Hill, also in Perth, one at The Hermitage Dunkeld and one at The Knock of Crieff.
There are lots of different routes Trail, Discovery and Challenge, we tried out an easy Trail route
and we all really enjoyed finding the markers using the map, great to get youngsters out for a walk!, don't see any reason why we won't do it again. You can get more information about the maps available etc from Tayside Orienteers.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Red Squirrels

Came back today after a couple of days away up in Aviemore. I was very fortunate to get up close to get these pictures of Red Squirrels which are quite a common sight in the Highlands as the habitat is ideal for them. In Perthshire we also have red squirrels and I have been lucky to even have had them in my garden but I've not been quick enough to get a photo. I have two feeders up to help encourage them. There is a Perth and Kinross Red Squirrel group which may be of interest to you.

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Rally of Scotland

Seeing as The Rally of Scotland had a 'stage' in the forests next to the Hermitage, it seemed a shame not to stay and watch, so we did. Not very easy taking photos/videos of fast moving cars!

Autumnal colours at The Hermitage

On the way back from Logierait I decided to call in at The Hermitage to see the glorious autumn leave colours and the magnificent waterfalls. It was extremely busy around there today partly due to a stage of The Rally of Scotland being held, so it was a stroke of luck we were there early enough to get parked no problem.

Logierait Country Market

Finally got the chance to go over to Logierait for one of their monthly markets which I mentioned in a past blog, it was a very busy market with lots of local produce, crafts etc. I bought some pork and black pudding sausages to try out on my guests! There was also a stall called Handcrafted Herbals that are based here in Blairgowrie.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Pictures of Dunkeld

Just a few random pictures taken around Dunkeld today. It is always a popular place to visit with the cathedral, the river and all the charming National Trust properties.