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Shelf of Scottish books
Lisa Paton

Forty-seven community groups, museums, and culture and heritage organisations have been supported through the first round of the Community Stories Fund, bringing an exciting programme of storytelling events to all areas of Scotland as part of the Year of Stories 2022.

The programme is designed to showcase the wealth of stories inspired by, written, or created in Scotland, with each community focusing on tales uniquely important to them.

The lives and works of iconic Scots, Scotland’s diverse landscapes, local myths and legends, and participants' own stories will be told in a multitude of languages – including English, Gaelic, Scots, Arabic and British Sign Language – through an imaginative mix of storytelling, film screenings, live music, creative workshops, guided wildlife walks and more.

Among the full programme of projects to be supported are:

  • Storytelling was a crucial element of the winter months in rural Scotland. This tradition will be recreated at Auchindrain from January to March through a series of storytelling sessions at Auchindrain delivered in Argyll Gaelic and English.

  • From February to July, the Highland Museum of Childhood will offer local audiences of all generations the chance to connect and share their stories of growing up in the Highlands. A rich programme of activity includes informal story sharing sessions, creative writing and craft workshops.

  • The magic of Highland Storytelling at Hugh Miller's Birthplace Museum will feature a series of guided storytelling walks around Cromarty from April to October, inspired by the life and works of the 19th century geologist, folklorist and social justice campaigner

  • A Yarn Worth Spinning led by The Great Tapestry of Scotland will tell the story of the history and culture of textiles in the Scottish Borders from April to June, including an exhibition and fashion show

  • A cross generational project led by Catherine Wheels Theatre Company, The Phone Box – East Linton voices shared down the line, will take place in August with a rich soundscape of stories, memories and music.

  • ‘Story Ceilidh’ is a unique cross-cultural collaboration, delivered by Magic Torch Comics, that will bring together stories related to Inverclyde with the stories of New Scots families who have settled there. This celebration of traditional tales, ballads and poems in Arabic, Scots and Gaelic will take place as part of Refugee Week in June.

The Community Stories Fund programme takes place alongside larger-scale events supported through the Open Events Fund, and the Partner Events Programme. These three strands make up the full Year of Stories 2022 programme which will begin on 1 January and run until 31 December 2022. 

If you’re keen to get involved, there’s still time! Round 2 of the YS2022 Community Stories Fund opens for applications on 24 January 2022. Organisations and community groups, including museums and galleries, across Scotland are invited to apply for up to £5,000 to deliver new programming for audiences that celebrates Scotland’s rich storytelling and literary heritage. You can find out more about the fund and the application process here.

The Fund is delivered in partnership between VisitScotland and Museums Galleries Scotland with support from National Lottery Heritage Fund, thanks to National Lottery players.