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new tweed created for scottish area once known for whisky production
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New Tweed created for Scottish area once known for whisky production

The trust is now spearheading a series of projects and investments set to breathe new life into the centuries-old Glen, including a community-driven tweed project which lines up with an ambitious bid to open Scotland’s newest whisky distillery later this year. Pictured: A group of eight women from the Cabrach community were involved in creating the tweed (Image: supplied) The group of eight women from the Cabrach community created the new tweed using a palette and pattern that is said to ‘bring to life’ the natural beauty of the area. Sam Dowdall, community and development manager at The Cabrach Trust, said: “Being part of this project, and working alongside our community to create this gorgeous tweed, has been an honour. “So willingly supported by a host of local businesses, what the group has created not only mirrors the astonishing beauty of the Cabrach landscape but creates a very special product which will play an important role as part of the Trust’s regeneration strategy.” READ MORE: ‘This is a historic watershed’ – Election that changed the face of Scottish politics The group was helped to create the tweed by a trio of Moray-based textiles experts, Johnstons of Elgin, Buckie-based micro-mill Woven In The Bone and Macnaughton’s at Keith’s Isla Bank Mills. George McNeil, managing director (retail) of Johnstons of Elgin, said: “Johnstons of Elgin were proud to play a small part supporting The Cabrach Trust’s community-led project to create this very first Cabrach Tweed. “The work undertaken by the community group was beautiful, drawing rich inspiration from the Cabrach’s famed landscape. “Our support focused on developing early ideas into concept designs and it was a pleasure hosting the group in Elgin for a tour of Newmill. “The positive change happening in the Cabrach is something the whole of Moray should be proud of.” Pictured: The tweed was inspired by the ‘rugged beauty’ of the Cabrach (Image: Supplied) Sam Goates of Woven In The Bone added: “My artisan weaving mill is named after a poem by Donald S Murray that talks of the colours in the landscape and how they can be captured in cloth that becomes evocative of that place. “The Cabrach Tweed project is a perfect example of how Scotland’s heritage of cloth design can create cloth to connect with. “It has been a lovely project to be involved in to help the Cabrach community bring their cloth to life.” Alongside the support and expertise of these Moray-based textile experts, the Cabrach Tweed project was supported by Social Enterprise Academy, with funding provided by the National Heritage Lottery Fund. Pictured: A trio of Moray-based textiles experts helped to develop the tweed (Image: Supplied) Said to be undergoing a ‘renaissance’, this is not the first time that The Cabrach area has made headlines in recent months. Having previously relaunched The Cabrach Picnic and Games after an 87-year hiatus, last year the trust initiated the hunt for a lost silver Rose Bowl which was traditionally awarded to the best-performing athlete at the event. After a public plea, Adrian Taylor in Devon, grandson of the last winner of the Rose Bowl, returned the silverware to Moray in February, 2024 so that it could be awarded once more at the Picnic and Games. READ MORE: Century-old Highland Games silverware unearthed in Devon after nationwide appeal Pictured: The Cabrach Rose Bowl (Image: The Cabrach Trust) On the site of the Games, Inverharroch Farm, The Cabrach Trust’s development of The Cabrach Distillery and Heritage Centre is well underway. This transformational project has been designed to breathe new life into the local area famed for its role in the birth of malt whisky thanks to the illicit distilling and smuggling of Scotland’s national drink during the 1700s and 1800s. At the height of production around 100 pot stills are believed to have been in operation in the area, which at the time had around 1,000 residents. Production at the distillery is scheduled to commence later this year and will herald the return of whisky-making in the Cabrach for the first time in 170 years, telling the story of the historic region in the process. READ MORE: Birthplace of malt whisky celebrated as community maps three centuries of history The Cabrach Trust also has plans to develop the surrounding site as a community learning, rural skills, and heritage hub. Last year, more than 2000 people visited the new all-abilities Cabrach Discovery Trail, which combines information on the natural landscape, habitats, and wildlife of the Cabrach, as well as opportunities to engage with nature through activities including bird watching in a custom-made nature hide on the banks of the River Deveron and pond-dipping in two new nature ponds.

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