Project Details

Description of project aims

The University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) Archaeology Institute and Institute for Northern Studies (Perth College) has been awarded grant funding to undertake a cultural heritage assessment for Cateran Ecomuseum.
Cateran Ecomuseum covers an area of approximately 1000 km² which forms a board transect from lowland rural Tayside (Strathmore), across the glens and upland of north-eastern Perthshire and western Angus, north to the southern Cairngorms (Figure 1). Established in 2018 as a social enterprise, it is Scotland’s second Ecomuseum (alongside Skye Ecomuseum) and the only one on the mainland. This ‘museum without walls’ includes several thousand known archaeological sites from all periods, set within some of the most spectacular landscapes in Scotland. The Ecomuseum’s key objective is to “engage in activities to develop public understanding and engagement with the arts, culture, history, natural and cultural heritage” (see
From the outset the Ecomuseum aims to engage both the people who live and work in the area and visitors. Amongst the activities and outputs since its launch in 2019, are community consultations on which sites should be promoted, a set of self-guided itineraries co-designed with local people, a programme of live events and activities, the website portal and most recently the launch of the ecomuseum hub in Alyth Museum (May 2022). It has chosen to frame its visitor offer around an innovative regenerative / circular tourism approach, where the visitor is encouraged to help ‘leave things better’ by engaging in activities that are restorative, regenerative and re-use resources and which bring tangible and equitable benefit to communities that live in and around the Ecomuseum.
The resulting project report summarises the results of the assessment which aims to support a programme of archaeology and heritage activities. The project was funded by an award from the UHI Knowledge Exchange and Innovation grant scheme in May 2021 and completed in June 2022. A knowledge exchange weekend for the Board and UHI team, with site visits and a workshop, was held on the 10-12 December 2021.
Effective start/end date1/05/2131/12/22


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