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Threading Rob Donn

Celebrating the life and times of renowned Gaelic bard Rob Donn

As part of a two-year programme to celebrate the life and times of renowned Gaelic bard Rob Donn, Strathnaver Museum has been awarded £5,400 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) Stories, Stones and Bones programme, to create a community curated wall hanging. Working in association with the Mackay Country Community Trust the project team will work with local craft groups and individuals to create a wall hanging depicting scenes from Rob Donn’s life and work.

Born at Alltnacaillich, Strathmore in 1714 Donn lived through a chaotic period in Highland history as the Jacobite Risings led to lasting changes throughout the Highlands. Donn’s work is celebrated by Gaelic scholars and he is arguably as important to Gaelic poetry as Robert Burns is to poetry in Scots.

Unable to read or write, and dictating his poetry from memory only towards the end of his life, his work represents an important document of a world both expanding and contracting as the British state made its presence felt in the day-to-day life inhabited by Rob Donn and his contemporaries.

Participants will create individual scenes from the life of Rob Donn which will make up the final piece. A local artist has been appointed to support volunteers in their creations and to bring together all the craft elements of the project. The finished work will form part of a permanent exhibition in Strathnaver Museum after touring several venues in Mackay Country.

An open day will take place in Durness in June for anyone interested in becoming involved in the Threading Donn project. Participants are encouraged to contact project coordinator Fiona Mackenzie at to find out more.

Threading Donn press release May 2017

After the successful event in June another event is being held on Sunday 10th September 11-3 Durness Village Hall.

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