Banchory Scouts unveil totem pole

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Over 100 people gathered at the Banchory Scout Hut on Sunday to watch the unveiling of the group’s new 27ft totem pole.

A celebration with traditional Canadian-style hospitality was held at the 1st Banchory Scout Group’s base in Dee Street.

The scouts served up pancakes and maple syrup, and blueberry muffins, as a drumming session entertained family and friends along with invited scouting officials.

The totem pole signifies over 32 years of close association with scouts in Canada.

The first camp was held in 1980 when 55 scouts and 10 leaders visited the scout headquarters in Ottawa, and it was here that the Deeside scouts witnessed the massive totem pole outside the building.

The latest Banchory return trip took place last year, while a group of Canadian scouts will be heading for Deeside next year.

Banchory Scout leader Graeme Wilson (Bosun) has always wanted to provide the town with a similar pole, so after many years of dreaming it finally became a reality.

Totem poles are monumental sculptures carved from large trees, usually Red Cedar, by cultures of the indigenous people of North America.

The meanings of the designs on totem poles are as varied as the cultures that made them.

The poles may recount familiar legends, clan lineages or notable events. Some celebrate cultural beliefs , others are simply artistic presentations.

Group assistant leader Heather Morrison said the Banchory pole was inspired by the Iroquois tribe ones the scouts saw in Canada.

The Iroquois, also known as the ‘the people of the longhouse’, are an association of several tribes including The Huron, and today they live primarily in Ontario, Quebec and New York State.

Crathes artist Carol Adams created the landmark by carving it from two pine trees donated by nearby Glendye Estate, one being used to form the bright blue and white Thunderbird Eagle at the top.