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Local school film showcased at national gallery

National competition helps shine a light on legacy of Scottish land

A film created by Aberdeenshire pupils has been displayed at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art after a local high school won a national competition.

Pupils from Kemnay Academy travelled to the capital to watch a film they created on local land being projected onto the museum after being announced as winners of the Scottish Land Commission’s MyLand.Scot ‘My Land, My Story’ campaign.

The film told the story of the area around Kemnay Quarry and the transformation the land has seen in the past, present and future – from producing granite that was used in the Scottish Parliament Building and Forth Road Bridge, to becoming a community and educational space.

Dexter Cook, a 16-year-old pupil from the school, said: “Creating the film has been a brilliant experience. It’s been fascinating to learn about our local land and get creative to showcase its use.

“The highlight was actually winning the competition. Everyone is extremely proud to have seen our film projected onto the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and it was such a fun day travelling to Edinburgh as a class for the event.”

The ‘My Land, My Story’ competition was launched by the Scottish Land Commission as part of its MyLand.Scot campaign in connection with Visit Scotland’s Year of Stories 2022 to raise awareness among the younger generations about the range of positive ways land can be used and reused around the country.

Kemnay Academy received a £500 grant from the Scottish Land Commission to create their film on the Kemnay Quarry, which saw the school’s Environmental Sciences and Media Studies classes combine to bring the project to life.

Kemnay Quary - 'My Land, My Story' film competition winning film by Kemnay Academy pupils

Land Reform Minister Mairi McAllan said: “Scotland's land is a precious national resource that is fundamental to our economy, our environment, our wellbeing and our just transition to net zero. It also forms an important part of our history and culture – as demonstrated by Kemnay Academy in their impressive film. I offer my congratulations to the young winners for this excellent achievement.

“Scotland already has a long history of land reform, with the statutory Community Right to Buy, the Scottish Land Commission and the Scottish Land Fund empowering people across the country to benefit from the ownership and use of local assets.

“Through our ambitious new Land Reform Bill we will support this existing work to encourage and support responsible and diverse landownership – and create more opportunities for people and communities to determine how land in their area is used.”

MyLand.Scot is an online initiative which aims to highlight ways in which Scotland’s land is owned, used and managed. From social media-savvy farmers to communities transforming derelict land into gardens, the project uses case studies to showcase positive examples of land use around the country.

Hamish Trench, Chief Executive of the Scottish Land Commission, said: “Pupils at Kemnay Academy have been incredibly creative in demonstrating ways in which young people in Scotland can engage in conversations around land use.

“It was exciting to see their production centre stage at the National Gallery of Modern Art and we hope that projects like this will continue to encourage young people to think of land in creative ways and encourage in conversations around Scottish land.”

The Scottish Land Commission works to create a Scotland where everybody can benefit from the ownership and use of the nation’s land and buildings.

For more information on MyLand.Scot visit:

For more information on Visit Scotland’s ‘Year of Stories’ visit: