Drystone Dyking Competition Comes To Threave!

Dykers of all skills – from novice to professional – are being sought for a competition at Threave Estate on Saturday, 02 October.

Drystane Dykes are a much loved and valued feature in the Galloway landscape, valued far beyond their formal use as field boundaries. The build and maintenance of these features is a vital skill to be celebrated and preserved.

The competition on 02 October is being run by the Southwest Scotland Dry Stone Walling Association, with the support of the team at National Trust for Scotland’s Threave Estate. This is the 33rd Dyking competition run by the SW Scotland branch of the Dry Stone Walling Association and maintains a tradition of competitions in the area which goes back to 1939.

Judged by master craftsmen of the Dry Stone Walling Association of Great Britain, competitors will be asked to take down and rebuild sections of wall from 1-2metres in length, depending on whether they are novices, amateurs or professionals. The best three in each class win generous prizes.

Sign up to take part now! Rules and application forms can be found here: https://www.swscotdswa.org/projects-and-competitions.

Nic Coombey, Chairman of the SW Scotland Branch of the Drystane Dyking Association, said:

Drystane dykes are an integral part of our countryside and although some are neglected there are many that are kept in good condition due to the skills of local dykers. A dyking competition is a great way of demonstrating the craftsmanship that is still alive in our communities and celebrate a traditional rural skill.”

The competition is being supported with a grant through the Galloway Glens ‘Our heritage’ Small grants Scheme. McNabb Laurie, Galloway Glens Team leader, added:

“I really do point at drystone dykes as I travel around Galloway – and I am sure I am not alone. They are such a great blend of function and art, I am in awe of the skills involved.
The Galloway Glens Scheme is delighted to be supporting the Dry Stone Walling Association with this dyking competition on 02 October. Particular thanks also to the NTS Threave team for hosting the competition – with Galloway Leveller history this is such a perfect location for this event – and thanks to the National Lottery Heritage Fund for their support.”