Annual Conference 30th September 2023

Joint Conference, 30 September 2023, At Robert Burns Centre, Mill Road, Dumfries DG2 7BE

The Society for Landscape Studies Conference 2023 will be held on Saturday 30th September at the Robert Burns Centre, Mill Rd, Dumfries DG2 7BE.

It is organised in conjunction with the Dumfries and Galloway Natural History and Antiquarian Society with the working title Landscapes of Dumfries and Galloway. The landscapes of the region vary from the wild coast of the Irish Sea to the mountains, lochs and forests of Galloway Forest Park, the old mining area of the Lowther Hills and the post-war abandoned sites of munition factories and artillery ranges of the Solway Coast.

We have a wide variety of papers from Historic Scotland’s archaeological survey of the Kirkcudbright ranges, Monastic Landscapes, Galloway Glens Partnership Landscape and a history of the landscape of Dumfries and Galloway through maps. There will also be a field day on the 1st of October.

Threave Castle

09.30 Doors Open (tea and coffee)

10.00 Introduction to the Day

Chairmen of Society for Landscape Studies and Dumfriesshire and Galloway Natural History and Antiquarian Society.

10.10 Characterising the Historic Landscapes of Dumfries and Galloway

David Cowley, Historic Scotland.

10.45 Understanding Dumfries and Galloway Monastic Landscapes

Derek Hall, University of Stirling.

11.20 Break (tea and coffee)

11.35 Landscapes of Conflict: Towers and Fortified Homes

Graham Roberts, Janet Brennan (Barholm Castle) and Alan Gibbs (Hills Tower).

12.10 Landscapes of Conflict – Two World Wars and One Cold War.

Andrew Nicolson, Archaeologist, Dumfries and Galloway Council.

Questions from the morning sessions

12.45 Lunch – Buffet lunch in the Robert Burns Centre

13.30 Case Study: Archaeology of the Kirkcudbright Range (MOD)

David Cowley, Historic Scotland.

14.10 Discussion Time: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Thinking of Current Landscape Impacts in Dumfries and Galloway.

Panel discussion with Morag Paterson, Dr Elinor Harris and one other.

15.00 Break (tea and coffee)

15.15 Art in the Landscape: From Abandonment to Art – The Crawick Multiverse, Sanquhar.

15.45 Galloway Glens Partnership Landscape Assessment – Update and Lessons.

McNabb Laurie, Galloway Glens Landscape Project and Gavin MacGregor, Northlight Heritage.

16.15 Questions from afternoon session

16.30 End

Field Day, Sunday 1 October

Morning: Two Tower Houses: Hills Tower, Drumcoltron (HS)

Lunch at Threave Gardens, National Trust for Scotland

Afternoon: Threave Landscape Restoration Project.

Mary Smith, Engagement Ranger, National Trust for Scotland, Threave Nature Reserve

Fee £30 including buffet lunch. For further information contact Harry Hawkins of SLS at or by phone at 01768885602 or 07791543949.