As part of our research of life here in Glendaruel: We conducted a survey to explore our perceptions of what it is like to live in the Glen today: In the first instance we explored why the first settlers would have been attracted to the Glen and what challenges they may have faced once they became ‘resident’: From this learning process we explored the ‘view’ of life today.
Pros of Glendaruel of pre-historic times.
- Food: Plenty of food was available – fish, wild dogs, cattle, sheep, boars, bears, wild cats, berries, birds, wild poultry, berries, leaves, nuts, grass, vegetables, nettles, herbs.
- Water: The River Ruel would have provided plenty of water.
- Weather: The rain would help make plants grow, and to keep the River flowing. The Sun would also help things grow.
- Trees: Lots of wood available to build huts, boats, weapons with. Provide shelter. Trees produce oxygen: so clear air to breathe. Can climb trees to hide from predators, or to keep look out in case of attack. Firewood.
- Rocks: Plenty of rocks around to use as weapons or for cooking and building.
- Hills: Plenty of hills to make camps, and to have look outs incase of attack.
- Animals to hunt for food and clothing
- Space: There was lots of space for people to live in.
- The shape of the Glen, with a high end and a low end:- Good protection
- Protected place.
- Good land to farm grain and plants
Cons of Glendaruel in – pre-historic times:
- Wild Animals: Could attack, kill, and steal food / supplies.
- New Plants: Some of the plants may have been poisonous, and the only way the early people would have discovered this would be through tasting.
- Newcomers: Being so close to the Lochs and Rivers, new settlers may have tried to come and settle in the Glen, and battles would break out.
- No medicine, you might die young.
- Harsh weather: during the winter months it would be hard to survive
- Very dark in the winter: (no electricity) limited light.
- Limited food to eat in the winter
Now we focused our thoughts to what the Glen is like for us to live in today.
Pros of life in Glendaruel in 2013
- Kilmodan Primary School: We have a lovely school, and we learn lots of different things. We are lucky as we have Forest School in the Glen too.
- Farms: Farming provides jobs and employment in the Glen, as well as food.
- Forest School & Woodland: Great place to explore. We can go on adventures in the Forest, and play in the mud and trees. There are lovely flowers, and lots of different bugs, birds and wildlife too.
- The River: Is a great place to play in the summer and leads to the sea
- Dunans Castle: Iconic historical building in the Glen. People can visit and walk around the grounds. You can stand on the bridge and see the River Ruel.
- Houses: There are a lot of lovely houses in the Glen, and they all have interesting stories.
- Shinty Pitch: We have our own shinty pitch in Glendaruel, where we can play shinty, and watch matches.
- Family: Some of us have close family around us
- Healthy life: We go out doors a lot
- Summer School. There is a kids summer club, where we get to meet new kids and do sport and drama and make things
- We grow fresh food
- We have fresh food delivered
What we would like to improve about Glendaruel in 2013
- Hotel: The Glendaruel Hotel is shut, which means not as many people visit as used to, and there’s no-where for the locals to meet.
- Shop: We don’t have our own local shop. People living in the Glen have to travel quite far to go to the shops.
- Sports facilities: We have a great shinty pitch, but we don’t have other sports facilities.
- Roads: The roads often have potholes because of the heavy trucks that drive through. Some of the single-track roads are very bumpy and have big holes. Some of the roads are so bad we can’t ride our bikes on them.
- Distances to travel anywhere
- Small population: Not many kids in the school
- River: There aren’t enough fish in the river.
- Play Park: It could be more interesting.
- Buses: The public transport isn’t very good for visitors to come to the Glen during the day. Or for people to get to work
- Being included: For new families in the area, it is hard to fit in
- Limited jobs: Traveling along way to work
- Isolation: Some of us are a long way from our families
- Lack of light: It is very dark in the winter months
- Poor services: We can get fast broadband so cant download films or TV: In the winter we often loose our electricity and water and if it is very cold the roads are bad and people cant get through.