READING about the Brooks family and their foraging for food (“Family serves a dinner-time treat ... Japanese Knotweed crumble”, The Herald, May 2) provoked very happy memories of another forager-par-excellence; Rosalind Burgess, the Skye weaver, cook, and writer of an excellent book on how to use the things you grow and forage.

Ros, as we called her, had been a world traveller who settled on the Waternish peninsula, where her loom was ever busy, her gardening hat ever firmly on her head, and she spent her time foraging on the shore below and in woods and fields, no matter the weather.

The food writer and broadcaster, Derek Cooper, wrote the foreword for her book, Notes From An Island Kitchen, in which he said that she was “not only a very resourceful person but she has a frugal approach to the gifts of the natural world”.

Illustrated by the lovely drawings of Judith MacLachlan, it is a treasure to have on one’s kitchen bookshelf ... and more importantly, to use.

What happy evenings were spent in Ros’s wee house above the shore at Trumpan, dining on the delights she had made from foraged hawthorn and dandelion leaves, ground elder, field mushrooms, seaweeds and so many other things she had found or grown.

Her home-made wines, too, were often from foraged things, and the desserts were gorgeous.

I wish Mr Brooks and his family many happy years of foraging and using what they find to feed themselves well: as well as Ros fed her many friends.

Ros died in 2016 but I want to say - bon appétit, Ros, wherever you are foraging now.

Thelma Edwards,

Hume, Kelso.

A sure-fire sign of the city’s friendliness

DREADFUL to hear that there is a plan to remove the People Make Glasgow sign from the college building just off George Square.

These three words sum up perfectly what the city is all about - ask any of our millions of visitors! We are the friendliest, kindest people.

I can see this sign from my window high up in Rutherglen and it makes my day to open my kitchen curtains and wake up to this especially at this time.

Dorothy Connor,


Civility in lockdown

I HAVE just returned from a long walk via the canal bank near my home.

The weather was glorious. The canal towpath was busy with cyclists and joggers and family groups and couples, all of us keeping our distance from the other.

There were children feeding the ducks and the swans. A couple of small children were fascinated to see a group of five ducklings follow their mother in a perfectly straight line.

Apart from the brief awkward choreographed moment when we had to give each other a wide berth on the pathway, it was a perfectly normal day. Strangers were stopping to exchange greetings.

The lockdown has been surreal in so many ways, but I have noticed a distinct increase in civility. It reminded me of what has often been remarked upon, namely that we are all in this together.

It would be nice if we could all keep this friendly tone when the lockdown is finally over, rather than keeping to ourselves as most of us usually do, and not making meaningful eye-contact with people we come across in the street.

This has been a very strange shared experience for us all, but I hope that we can remain friendly, and open to new acquaintances.

R. Harper,