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Orts 20, 1990

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1. A Visit to George MacDonald Country. Preparations are all but complete for this event (24 – 27 Sept), and we hope the participants will have a happy and uplifting visit. A tour of Huntly is scheduled, plus coach-trips to the Cabrach (the setting for Castle Warlock); Leith House; Haddo House; the North East of Scotland Agricultural Heritage Centre (to see farming life as depicted in MacDonald’s novels); Portsoy and Cullen, where Malcolm is set; the Wow o’ Rivven at Ruthven; and Drumblade Church, where the MacDonald family are buried. There will also be an official reception, a lecture (by David Robb), a sermon (by Fr. Ian Prior) and a ceilidh. The Society’s advance preparation has had the happy result of rousing a great deal of interest in and around Huntly. A beautiful “parchment effect” brochure has been produced by the Gordon District Council, with text by our Bill Raeper, and fine illustrations by Kate Robinson. It describes a “Town Trail”, gives a brief life of MacDonald, and has a section on MacDonald and Huntly. The Huntly Express has given the event a write-up, and there was a half-hour programme on local radio about MacDonald, which included an interview with Bill Raeper. The District Council is funding the reception at the Brander Library (this is where the MacDonald MSS are kept, under a copy of the medallion of MacDonald by Munro. The centenary celebrations of 1924 took place there).