Machair soundwalk, Music and/as Process

room 5 ECHOES

This 40-minute soundwalk starts in St Mungo Square, outside the University of Glasgow Advanced Research Centre Building (11 Chapel Ln, Glasgow G11 6EW). The walking route is a 2-mile loop mapped to established paths around Kelvingrove Park, returning to St Mungo Square.

About the soundwalk: Commissioned by Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre, this soundwalk explores the traditions and ecology of Uist’s machair. A Gaelic word meaning fertile, low-lying grassy plain, machair is one of Europe's rarest yet most species-rich habitats; only occurring on the exposed west-facing shores of Scotland and Ireland, 70% of which is found on Uist. Generations of low-intensity farming have shaped this unique landscape and encouraged wildlife over millennia. Developed in partnership with the local community, this work combines spoken narratives, field recordings, and compositions with archival sound recordings from Edinburgh University’s School of Scottish Studies, that chart over 70-years of oral history.

Contributors: Freddie MacDonald, Seoras MacDonald, Alisdair MacEachen, Anne MacLellan, and Matthew Topsfield.

Production team: Duncan MacLeod (composer), Kirsty MacDonald & Mairi McFadyen (creative ethnologists), and Sorcha Monk (creative producer).

Cover photo: Liniclate machair, Tara Drummie, 2022.

If you have any questions or feedback about this soundwalk, please email

© 2024 Duncan MacLeod. Unauthorised copying, hiring, lending, public performance and broadcasting of this soundwalk is strictly prohibited.

Version: RMA V1.0 (290624)



The Echoes

Start (St Mungo Square): Welcome & Introduction

Before you start the soundwalk, please take a moment to listen to this short introduction and orient…

Section 1: The Machair

__Directions:__ Leave St Mungo Square from the left-hand corner (facing the park) and take the foots…

Section 2: Collecting and using seaweed on the machair

__Directions:__ Continue the path along the south bank of the river. As the path divides at the war …

Section 3: Cultivating the machair

__Directions:__ Starting from Lord Roberts Monument, follow the path along the western edge of the p…

Section 4: Cropping & Harvesting on the machair

__Directions:__ Follow the path along the southern edge of the park and then join the path on the so…

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