Mermaids and muggles in Campbeltown

Published Date: 

6 Oct 2017 - 15:08

A new exhibition – with a nod to JK Rowling – is to open in Campbeltown later this month.

Mermaids and Muggles – Fantastic tales and Kintyre Folk will tell weird and wonderful tales of magic, mermaids and more.

It opens on Tuesday 17 October at Campbeltown Library.

Included in the exhibition will be original archives that record fantastical creatures said to have been spotted in Kintyre.

It will also have details about Harry Potter author JK Rowling’s Kintyre ancestors and information on a mermaid-type creature two residents, John McIssac and Catherine Loynachan, claimed to have seen in Corphins. Their testimony was recorded by Sheriff Substitute Duncan Campbell, one of those Rowling ancestors.

As well as the exhibition, there will be drop-in sessions where people can talk about what the documents on display mean to them, and about their memories and experiences of the people and places named in them.

Young people in the Campbeltown area will also have the chance to take part in workshops that will, with the help of the Scottish Council on Archives’ education development officer, help them understand and enjoy the historical records.

Plus, with the fascinating creatures described in the archives, it’s an exhibition of interest to everyone, not just natives of Kintyre.

Mermaids and Muggles runs in Campbeltown Library until Saturday 16 December and will be open during library opening hours, which are Tuesday 10am-1pm and 2-7pm; Wednesday 10am-1pm and 2-5pm; Thursday 10am-1pm and 1-7pm; Friday 10am-1pm and 1-5pm and Saturday 10am-1pm and 1-4pm.

It is part of the Written in the Landscape project which is part funded by Argyll and Bute Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund, Argyll Estates , Argyll historical centre An Iodhlann, the Clan Campbell Educational Foundation and Inveraray CARS (Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme).

Another current part of Written in the Landscape is working with the Duke of Argyll’s archives – known as the Argyll Papers – that make the family and estate papers more widely available to the public. Exhibitions are planned and volunteers will be recruited to help organise the archives.