|21 January 2005
Tourism potential of Scottish village's ancient past
A veteran campaigner is urging the members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) to unlock the tourism potential of one of Scotland's most ancient historic areas.
Cramond, four mile north west of Edinburgh, was shown in 2001 to be the earliest known place of human settlement in Scotland, with tiny fragments of discarded hazelnut shells dating back to 8500 BCE found by archaeologists, pushing the starting date for Scottish civilisation back about 500 years.
Ronnie Guild was behind one of the earliest petitions to the Scottish Parliament, and succeeded five years ago in persuading MSPs to launch an investigation into the area's history. The Parliament set up a management group chaired by Edinburgh City Council which appointed consultants, and signs went up to highlight the area's Roman past.
But now Mr Guild wants Cramond's wider history to be celebrated. He said "Where it went wrong right at the start was when they focused on the Roman element and they employed the consultants on that basis," he said. I wanted them to look at the whole area and the whole span of history. We could reconstruct settlements from the different periods which were present in the Cramond area. Pupils could come and see all these stages of human development."
Edinburgh City Council said Cramond had been recognised as a site of international archaeological importance and that a five-year plan to develop the site to its full potential had been drawn up. A spokeswoman said: "Archaeological evaluation and assessment work is currently being carried out in the area to establish the restoration work needed and then to arrange to have that work done."
Source: Edinburgh Evening News (18 January 2005)
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