Howe of the Mearns to feature in BBC programme

The rolling Mearns countryside by Auchenblae.
The rolling Mearns countryside by Auchenblae.

BBC Scotland are to transmit a special programme on the effect the First World War had on Scottish countryside ,focusing on the Mearns.

Presented by Dougie Vipond, the programme begins and ends in the Howe of the Mearns with Lewis Grassic Gibbons’ classic novel, Sunset Song, featuring heavily and used throughout the programme.

The novel vividly depicts a small Scottish community and Dougie explores the huge changes that the war brings to this area and the wider country.

The programme will uncover the tragic story of two brothers, Duncan and William Harper, named on the war memorial in the village of Auchenblae.

Both were killed during the Battle of the Somme, and their deaths are emblematic of the loss of so many men from rural communities, which had a devastating effect on the Scottish countryside.

Seventeen-year-old Alexander Sanger, pipe major of Lathallan School Pipe Band, will conclude the programme with presenter Dougie back at the Auchenblae War Memorial and in fitting Sunset Song fashion, playing ‘Flowers of the Forest.’

Viewers will also see how different areas around Scotland were affected by the loss of men who went to fight in the First World War. The Landward special is due to be screened next Friday, April 11, at 7.30pm on BBC Two Scotland