It happened in the Mearns

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Just a little way up the coast from Crawton, the silhouette of Dunnottar Castle has, for the first time in probably centuries, undergone something of a transformation just recently - all in the name of entertainment. A fibreglass scaffolding-propped “facade” built in connection with the production of Franco Zefirelli’s forthcoming film of “Hamlet”, in which some local folk have secured parts as “extras”.

Crawton has received more publicity in the last month than it ever got when it was a thriving fishing community of 61 houses a hundred years ago. Although the last fishing family is thought to have left the village just prior to the First World War, there is at least one person in Stonehaven who claims to have been born in “The Crawton”.

At a District Council meeting last week, the planning committee approved the temporary siting of a Portakabin there, which is required by the Ranger working for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds at Fowlsheugh Bird Sanctuary nearby. Moves are affot by the RSPB to obtain a piece of land.

And the old village itself, which has recently changed owners, was partially rebuilt last month by Marquis Films to give the illusion of an inn. It’ll be interesting to see what Crawton looks like as part of the upcoming film, “Hamlet”!