On Wednesday the 6th of November, the great and good of the Historic Mapping world in South West Scotland come together at the CatStrand for the Dumfries Archival Mapping Project (DAMP) Annual General Meeting.

Event: CatStrand 6.30pm on 6th November

These events are famously entertaining, including a meal, speakers and robust discussion about how pre-ordnance survey maps can inform topics as varied as landscape and social change.  DAMP has a unique presentation of its maps using expert panellists to discuss various features on these antique and beautiful artefacts.

The theme of this year’s event is ‘Hill Farming’. The expert panel will include botanist Prof Rob Marrs from Liverpool University, archivists Paul Choi from Falkirk, and Graham Roberts from Dumfries. In addition, there will be input from local historians David Bartholomew and Sandy Hall.


Speaking about the upcoming event, Archie McConnel from DAMP said:

“This year’s topic should be of interest to all who have an interest in landscape…not least because of our good mix of speakers and panellists.  However, we will also be touching on a wide variety of other topics as well including mining, surveying, land ownership, ecology etc. etc. …and all this illustrated with a set of beautiful old maps from the 18th and early 19th century.  We try to make it as relaxed an evening as possible and we enjoy a spot of audience participation as well.  The Cat Strand is a great venue and it is hoped that discussions will carry on in the bar afterwards.  We are looking forward to it and hope to see you there!”


DAMP is undertaking a range of map-hunting activities and events in the Stewartry over coming years, supported by a grant from the Galloway Glens Landscape Partnership Scheme. Nick Chisholm, Galloway Glens Project Officer, said:

99% of the British landscape is entirely manmade. When we look out over our stunning scenery, we see a postcard image that has been constructed by generations of changing land use. It is easy to look at this landscape and think ‘it has always been like this’ but the change has been dramatic. Cattle, at one point, may have been a dominant feature, and now there is a dominance of sheep and forestry. Many more people used to live and work in the landscape, the exodus over the last century or so has had a profound effect. All this and much more can be traced through the historical record generated by maps. This meeting will be a cracking opportunity to explore this and much more.


The event is open to all. Attendance costs £23 including the meal and an annual membership of the DAMP organisation. To help DAMP plan numbers, please book in advance, contact Archie at dumfriesamp@gmail.com to book your ticket or message through the “Dumfries Archival Mapping Project” Facebook page where there are further details.