Gallowgellygillburn, Dundee

Saturday 3rd Aug : Exploring the Gelly Burn, one of the tributaries of the Dighty, with Roshni Jose, PhD researcher at Abertay.

The Gelly Burn runs through what is now Ardler Village. Where once there were Dundee’s iconic multis (surely on our coat of arms at one point?), now there are football pitches and green spaces, and two fabulous ponds full of wildlife. These SUDS ponds create a place for rainwater to go, and to filter away slowly and semi-naturally, so avoiding flash flooding both locally and downstream.

Roshni is also looking at how the ponds have been appropriated into people’s idea of place. Highlights of our walk (for me!) were

  • meeting the scary man with four huge Alsatians who gave us a great run-down of recent bird comings and goings and swan/heron behaviour
  • finding four teenage girls in their best gear, hair straightened, also walking the burn – actually walking in the water – using a golf flag as a ‘staff’.
  • meeting a man who, while gleaning golf balls from the water, told us yet another version of the story of the wee boy that drowned. Urban myth-making in action.
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