School pupils become archaeologists as they trawl for treasures at the Palace

31 March 2017

Primary school pupils from Robert Douglas Memorial School in Scone enjoyed a two-day archaeological experience at Scone Palace this week.

Led by Sophie Nicoll, Historic Environment Officer for the Tay Landscape Project, the Primary 4, 5 and 6 pupils took part in field walking - a technique for finding or studying archaeological sites by walking systematically across a ploughed field, collecting artefacts on the surface. 


Marketing manager Margo Baird said: “We are delighted to be working with Tay Landscape Partnership again, and the recently ploughed Mansion Field near Balboughty Home Farm is perfect for this project. Since we’ll be celebrating VisitScotland’s Year of History and Archaeology all year, this seems like a fitting event to kick things off.

“Scone Palace Estates has played an important part in Scottish history and the children are walking in the footsteps of Scotland’s ancient kings.”

The archaeological field walking is part of a Tay Landscape Partnership project called Early Settlers, looking for evidence of Mesolithic people in and around the area. As part of their class work, the RDM children have been reading the novel Wolf Brother by Michelle Paver. Set in Mesolithic times, the novel is not only an exciting read but also reveals much about the lives of hunter-gatherers who lived in Scotland 10,000 years ago.

Sophie Nicoll explained:

“This is the last ever session of the project and we are really excited to be working with Robert Douglas Memorial School to see what we can find on a ploughed field in Scone Estate. The field walking is part of ‘Mesolithic Week’, a full week of early prehistoric education at the school, with ancient crafts and skills, a pop-up museum and a whole range of educational and fun events for the pupils.”

Tay Landscape Partnership is delivering 28 community heritage and environment projects over a four-year period.  It is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and led by Perth & Kinross Heritage Trust and Perth & Kinross Countryside Trust. Other funders include The Gannochy Trust, Perth and Kinross Council and The Robertson Trust.