Spring Equinox

Today marks the calendar at the Vernal Equinox the point when night and day both (approximately) equal 12 hours. Then from now on our days will be longer than nighttime and the time of year when new life begins to “spring” into action.

Though we have had such a mild winter Spring seems to have started already. All the daffodils in my garden are completely out and some have even wilted. But imagine my surprise yesterday when I saw Mr & Mrs Mallard and their 11 ducklings yesterday swimming on the canal, it looks like they though spring started a month ago!

Crabbie’s Alcoholic Ginger Beer Perth Festival

Perth Racecourse kicks off it’s exciting new racing 2012 calendar with the Crabbie’s Alcoholic Ginger Beer Perth Festival. 3 days of exhilarating racing for the Perth Festival. The 3 day event begins on Wednesday April 25th 2012.

Perth Racecourse has 14 race day fixtures of exhilarating horse racing with outstanding sporting hospitality coupled with our unique atmosphere. Ideal for staff incentives or entertaining clients and customers.

Perth Wins City Status!!!

Yesterday Perth CITY received the news it had long been wishing for. Finally after losing the title of “city” in the a local council shake up in the 70s Perth regained it’s official city name.

PERTH became Scotland’s seventh city as it was awarded the status to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. It joins Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee, Inverness and Stirling as cities. St Asaph in Wales and Chelmsford in England were also awarded city status today while Armagh in Northern Ireland was granted a lord mayoralty. Perth was selected following a competition to bid for the civic honour which 26 towns across the UK entered. Civic leaders and politicians welcomed the announcement, which they believe will boost Perth’s profile. Dr John Hulbert, provost of Perth & Kinross Council, said: “I am delighted that official city status has been restored to Perth.

What a fabulous day I  (Lesley) spent in Bridge of Cally learning about the fascinating world of geocaching . The day was hosted by Paul McLennan from Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust and he guided the group through the intriguing new outdoor activity. Firstly in the classroom followed by time out of doors geocaching.

Geocaching is a fast growing sport with with millions of geocachers in the world. Perthshire is attracting more and more visitors to the area through it’s quality caches. It appeals across all ages and abilities to people who enjoy being outdoors. The magnificent vistas, wooded landscapes and well made trails throughout Perthshire are seen by geocachers as a fantastic bonus. This hugely popular high tech treasure hunt takes people to places they may not normally venture, allowing participants to see and find hidden gems on their adventure to seek out hidden treasure.

Using a handheld GPS device, iPhone or Android smartphone, the aim of the game is to locate caches (plastic boxes with a logbook and a range of swap items) using co-ordinates from www.geocaching.com . Then go online and share your adventures, upload photos or chat to other geocachers.


A Great Day Meeting Scotland’s Newest Arrivals

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We had a great day with our guests visiting Yang Guang and Tian Tian at Edinburgh zoo. Yang Guang (Sunshine) was lounging around in his bed and Tian Tian (Sweetie) was up playing around in her enclosure. A fabbie day out!!!

Perth City Bid


Please support the Perth City status bid be visiting the Perth & Kinross Council website and pledging your support.

To mark Her Majesty the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012, a special competition is being held where city status will be granted to one town in the UK. Momentum has been building for Perth’s bid to have its city status restored and there is strong support for the campaign.

Perth is a city in everything but name – a thriving and dynamic place to live and work in, with a fascinating history, welcoming community and a vibrant environment. The bid, which was submitted in May 2011, sets out how Perth is ready to reclaim its rightful place as a city.

The bid already has wide support from many residents, businesses, the local media, celebrities and politicians, however there will be strong competition from places elsewhere in the UK, and so we need you to join us in the campaign to restore city status to Perth!


Friends of the Black Watch

Almond Villa is proud to support The Black Watch Museum and has joined the “Friends of the Black Watch”. The Friends support the work of the museum and its staff to preserve the 285 year legacy of The Black Watch Regiment and its Regimental home at Balhousie Castle. — at Balhousie Castle, Perth

Well this summer we have seen our fair share of charity cyclists. The notion of cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats conjures up a variety of images, for me it is fear and dread whilst for others it’s an adventure, a challenge, hard work, a puncture or two, stunning scenery, glorious sunrises and a tremendous sense of achievement. Plus the odd day of Scottish rain and a few midges thrown in for luck. Since the 1960’s the End to End has become a firm favourite with the keen cyclist, a way to respectfully raise money with no easy days here. A gruelling pace for 9/10 days of punctures and blisters. Congratulations to Joe Burkinshaw, Dean Willoughby and their colleagues for raising over £1,400 for the Bluebell Woods Childrens Hospice.

Morrissey comes to Town

Yet again Perth Concert Hall attracts a top star through it’s doors and to perform a sell out concert.   Our guests who had travelled from Lanarkshire and Middlesborough to see him entertain the crowd certainly weren’t disappointed.

Morrissey rose to fame in the 1980s as the frontman of the alternative rock band The Smiths. The band was highly successful in the UK but broke up in 1987, and Morrissey began a solo career. Widely regarded as an important innovator in indie music, Morrissey has been described by music magazine NME as “one of the most influential artists ever”. Still 30years on he is able to pull in large audiesnces which can be testiment to his popularity.

He did have one request though for the Perth Concert Hall though which may have raised an eyebrow? He requested that the restaurant, the Glassroom, served only vegetarian dishes that evening. The concert hall duely obliged.

Poor Tree Have you ever seen a tree looking sorrier for itself?

The Winds of May

For Monday 23rd May, the met office had the severe warnings of high winds announced in plenty of time. Never again will Michael Fish face criticism for telling us that “there is no hurricanes” (or yet never can he live it down).

But who told the trees? I love the North Inch park and often divert, whilst walking into town, through the park to walk.   It is a pleasure to amble through the green open space with lovely trees, watch the rugby/football matches and and joggers etc. But what I saw on Tuesday morning brought a tear to my eye.   Some of the largest trees in the park had been brought to their knees by the winds of the evening before. Also, some of the youngest trees only 20ft high were ripped out of the ground and had been blown around the park like candy floss on a stick.

Hats off to Perth council for having gardeners there first thing on Tuesday morning to tidy up the devastation.   But whilst the debris could be cleared up in a week or so it may take another 50 years for replacement trees to match their predecessors.