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on the A7 from Edinburgh to Dalkeith, 300m south of the city bypass. Buses: LBT 3, Eastern Scottish 80, 80A from Princes Street. £3.30 (£2.55/22JD). Just re-opened for the new season, the butterfly cages have spectacular postman, owl and zebra butterflies flying around at the moment. Forget the beauties, however, the spine- tingling highlight is the newly opened ‘nocturnal world’ exhibition: a darkened room where the night-stalking insects wander around (in cages) under infra-red lighting. Grimace at the cockroaches, gawp at the red-rumped tarantulas and tip-toe quietly past the ‘Pyramid of Death’ with its one dozen African scorpions of three types, including the magnificent Emperor scorpion pictured above.

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I BUTTERFLY AND INSECT WDIILD Daily, foam-5.30pm. By Dobbies Gardening World

This section gives details of selected events taking place in and around the central belt of Scotland this fortnight. Events are listed by area and then alphabetically. All submissions should be accompanied by a contact phone number for our information. Days Out compiled by Thom Dibdln.

I DAWYCK GARDEN WALK Wed 5. 2pm. Dawyck Botanic Garden. Stobo. Peeblesshire. 01721 760254. £2/£l.5() (50p) includes entry to the garden. A gentle perambulation around the botanic garden with David Knott to look at early flowering trees and shrubs. Dawyck is open daily. 10am-6pm. See photo caption. I TALLA ORGANISED WALK Sun 26. 10am—4pm. Meet at Talla Linfoots Farm on the Tweedsmuir to Cappercleugh road at US map reference NT134203. 01835 830281. £2 (£1). A strenuous eight-mile hike led by the Borders Ranger Service up onto Lochcraighead. Take a packed lunch and make sure that your are well equipped for hill-walking.


I THE NIGHT SKY IN SUMMER Fri 31. 7.30pm. Mills Observatory. Balgay Park. Dundee. 01382 667138. Free. Open night at the observatory with a talk about the night sky over the summer followed by planetarium shows.


I LOGAN BOTANIC GARDEN Daily. 10am—6pm. Port Logan. Stranraer. Wigtownshire. (Fourteen miles south of Stranraer on the 87065.) 01776 86231. £2/£1.50 (50p). See photo caption.


I ALTERNATIVE HEALTH EXHIBITION Sat 25. 10am-6pm/Sun 26. Ham—6pm. The Assembly Rooms. George Street. Edinburgh. 0141 334 5846. £3 (£2). Over 30 talks and lectures over the two days covering topics as varied as Polarity Therapy. Qigong. Rolfing. Spiritual Healing and Tai Chi Chuan. Also 120

'. stalls selling the usual assortment of alternative health goodies. including

relaxation tapes. new age music. massage oils. holistic health books. herbal supplies and massage tables. Also opportunities to try many of the hands-on therapies such as aromatherapy. shiatsu and reflexology. Wholefood cafe run by Henderson's.



1 World on the A7 from Edinburgh to

10am—5.30pm. By Dobbies Gardening

Dalkeith. 300m south of the city bypass. Buses: [RT 3. Eastern SCottish 80. 80A from Princes Street. See photo caption.

I CRAFT FAIR Sat 1. 10am—4.30pm. Cluny Centre. Morningside. Edinburgh. 60p (30p). Silk scarves and spirtles. wooden toys and woven tapestries. Purchase your hand-crafted goods direct from their makers.

I THE NIGHT SKY IN SUMMER Fri 24. 7.30pm. Royal ()bservatory. Blackford Hill. Edinburgh. 0131 668 8405. £2 (£1.50). Last of the observatory‘s winter lectures with Russell Eberst giving a look forward to the summertime happenings in the night sky. The ROE. visitor‘s centre is open daily. l—5pm (£2/£l.25).

I SCIENCE FESTIVAL 31 March—l7 April. Edinburgh. ()ver 250 science type events at the seventh Edinburgh International Science Festival. See separate listings.

I SCOTTISH PHOTOGRAPHIC AND VIDEO SHOW Sat 1. 10am—6pm/Sun 2. 10am-5pm. Royal Highland Centre. lngliston. 01829 70884. £4 (£2). ()ver 45 stands of photographic goodies with a big photographic exhibition and a hands-on exhibition showing future developments in amateur photography.

I CONVERSATION PIECES Tue 4. 1pm. Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. 2 Sauchiehall Street. Glasgow. £1.50 (£2 if pre-booked). 0141 227 5511. Lady Avril Watson Stewart. the artist. calligrapher and lecturer gives a talk about calligraphy. Every weekday at 2pm there is a conducted tour around the concert hall buildings. £1.50 (50p).


Avr: Town‘ Hall. Sat 25. [Oath—4.30pm. Glasgow: Couper Institute. Clarkston

Road. Sun 26. Ham—5pm.

Glasgow: Mitchell Theatre. Charing Cross. Sun 2. 11am—5pm. 60p (30p). Porridge bowls and earthenwear hedgehogs. hand-crocheted hats and leather bags direct from the crafts people that make them.

I HOMEBUYER SHOW Fri 31/Sat l. lOam—5.30pm/Sun 2. l lam—5.30pm. SECC. Finniestoun Quay. Glasgow. £4. Show nomes and advice on buying and selling property both in Scotland and overseas.

I MOVING IMAGES: Old Hamilton Film Show 2 Wed 29. 7.30—8.30pm. Chaterault Country Park. Ferniegair. Hamilton. 01698 426213. Free. but phone to book. A chance to spot your relatives if they lived in Hamilton in this second selection of historical local footage.

I SIGNS OF SPRING Sun 26. 2pm. Drumpellier Country Park. Townhead Road. Coatbridge. 01236 422257. Free. See all the returning birds to the park. seek out the new growth beneath the leaf litter and spot some of the new arrivals: tadpoles.

I THOMAS THE TANK ENGINE DAY Sun 26. 1 1am—5pm. Railway Kingdom. The Mechanics Workshop. New Lanark Mills. New Lanark. 01555 666601. £1.75 (95p). Scotland‘s largest 00 scale railway layout is given over to the Tank Engine for a day. Look out Fat Controllers! Railway Kingdom is open daily and with the New Lanark heritage village is well worth a

day out.

I YOUNGER BOTANIC GARDEN BENMORE Daily. 10am-6pm. Dunoon. Argyll. (At the foot of Loch Eck. seven miles north of Dunoon on the A815). £2/£l.50 (50p). See photo caption.

Freeze-thaw action has been affecting the climbers and causing serious avalanche problems. as the tragic news stories in the national media have shown. However. the skiing has been largely unaffected. so long as you keep to the pistes and take heed of warning notices. As The List went to press. copious snow falls were creating skiing conditions comparable to last year‘s record season. Phone the resorts before setting out to check on conditions as access roads have been getting blocked. I Ski Clubs For the social life and post- piste piss-ups. your local ski-club can't be beat. They also organise mini-buses to slopes on most weekends and can put you in touch with other people who might want to car share.

Glasgow Ski Club meet every Thursday at 9pm in The Scaramouche. Elderslie Street. Details from 0141 424 1893 or 0141883 6665.

Edinburgh Ski Club meet every Tuesday from 9.30pm at the West End Hotel.

Palmerston Place. For an information pack phone 0131220 3121.

I Dry SIti Slopes Put in a bit of practice before hitting the white stuff:

Newmilns 35 High Street. Newmilns. Ayrshire. KA8 9EA. 01560 322320. Ninety-metre run with button lift. Evening classes. Public Skiing Sat/Sun. 2—4pm. £3.50 (£2.50).

Hillend Ski Centre Hillend. Edinburgh. 0131 445 4433. Mon—Sat. 9.30am—9pm; Sun. 9.30am—6pm. The longest and most challenging artificial ski run in Europe. Ski maintainance. coaching days. kids clubs. telemarking and snowboarding.

I GLENCOE Chairlift company: 01855 851 226. Closed Tue/Wed. The closest resort to Glasgow and Scotland's first commercial resort is having almost too much of a good thing. with the new pylons at the top of the hill onlyjust managing to stay clear of the snow. All runs complete. with skiing from the summit right down to the car park. On Sat 1/Sun 2 April. Clan Ski of Glasgow are organising a weekend of ski-boarding events with races. treasure hunts and other wacky events.

I NEVIS RANGE Chairlift company: 01397 705825. Scotland's newest and hence most modern ski resort boasts the UK‘s only gondola system. The highest pistes in Scotland are at the top of Aonach Mor (4006 feet) where the conditions are ‘almost alpine‘. Nevis has suffered from high winds closing the upper lifts and blowing snow off the pistes. But the skiing is great. if you can get up there! Creche facility: three—seven years.

I CAIRNGORM Chairlift company: 01479 861 261. Scotland‘s most famous ski area. close to the skiing town of Aviemore so there are lots of things to do off-piste. The resort is reckoned to be Scotland‘s largest. boasting 28 runs. On Sat 25/Sun 26 March the Cairngorm Snow Festival promises a line up ofentertainment for all the family with something for skiiers and non-skiiers alike.

I GLENSHEE Chairlift company: 013397 41320/41343. Edinburgh‘s closest resort. The three valleys of Glenshee offer 38 pistes on 40km of runs and a massive uplift capacity of 18.500 skiers an hour. There is a heavy accumulation of snow on the east facing slopes with all runs complete and a good firm base. The thaw has effected the lower slopes. but the upper runs have held up well. Creche facility: over two years.

I THE LECHT Chairlift company: 019756 51440. Scotland's best resort for absolute beginners. with easy green and nursery slopes right next to the car park. Although The Lecht has been particularly struck by the thaw. a few days of sub zero temperatures have frozen the ground so the recent snow should stick around for a while. Creche facility: over three years.

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: ’1 ~ ' I4 T; \‘3 I‘ " I' I INBURGH Daily,

foam—6pm. £2l£1.50 (50p). The three specialist gardens of the Royal Botanics: Dawyck, Younger and Logan (see individual listings for addresses), have now re- opened after the winter. At all three, the first rhododendrons should be coming into bloom amongst the earlier flowering bulbs. Dawyclt has an impressive collection of Chinese conifers. At Logan, changes have been made over the winter months. At the Younger garden the spectacular avenue of giant redwoods (pictured above) leads on to many walks through the formal gardens up on to the hillside woodlands.

72 The List 24 Mar-6 Ao'r'i995