One of Scotland’s most unique accommodations has launched an innovative genealogy project enabling visitors to swap memories for rewards. The 13-room Nae Limits Log Cabin in Kirkmichael, Perthshire, was the first of its kind when built entirely of wood, in chalet style, in 1967. Since then, it has assumed many guises and its new proprietors are seeking to piece together its history by inviting past guests to trade-in their stories.
Proprietors Kate and John Mason-Strang, two thirds of Highland Fling Bungee, established ‘The Memory Project 2012’ after discovering a trove of old images when they took over the building. When visitors spanning 45 years started to email with nostalgic tales, they began thinking of a way to compile the recollections. Described as ‘genealogy meets social media’, former guests are being asked to email their memories and pictures in exchange for a voucher. The voucher will entitle them to free coffee at the Cabin and the stories are to be chronologically ordered in an online timeline, allowing others to post their memories.
New visitors will be able to update the timeline and the proprietors plan to publish a memory book when enough information has been gathered. “When we took over, we were amazed by the amount of people calling or emailing to tell us about the times they had had here in the past,” said Kate Mason-Strang.
“We also found a lot of really interesting old photographs of family weddings, parties and music events and we started thinking it would be good to draw all of this together somehow and find out who these people were. “That is why we came up with the idea of the project. People seem more comfortable emailing memories of happy times rather than contributing to a more formal historical research project. We have received a lot of responses already by email and we will start to get these up on our website when the timeline begins to emerge.”
Co-Proprietor John Mason-Strang added: “I think it is important not to lose these snippets of life in the area and we liked the idea of having a kind of family tree where people could etch their own story; their own part in the timeline. “The building started out as the Edelweiss Hotel, so some people will remember it as that. Others will remember it as the Log Cabin Hotel. Now it is entering a new chapter once again.”
Former residents or visitors who wish to take part in ‘The Memory Project 2012’ should send their memories and pictures to
Project administrators will then issue an e-voucher for use at the Cabin. One person interested in the project’s development is local man, James Rattray. He built the chalet-style cabin in its original form 45 years ago and admits it has many tales to tell. “It has taken many different directions in its history. When it was built, people brought different ideas but no one ever thought it would develop as far as it did. In the sixties and seventies it was jam packed and people came from all over Scotland. At one stage, there was live music every other evening. The place had a real buzz and it is nice to see the new proprietors bringing it back to what it used to be.”