Cartography and crazy Vikings on the cards as Aberdeen City Libraries celebrate Scottish Local History Week

Stunning maps of Aberdeen throughout the centuries and a fun-filled Viking story workshop will form the focal points of Aberdeen City Libraries’ celebrations of next week’s Scottish History Week 2018.

On Monday 5 March, Christopher Fleet, Map Curator at the National Library of Scotland will present From Gordon to Google: Four Centuries of mapping Aberdeen at Aberdeen Central Library.

In his talk, which starts at 6pm, Christopher will look at the main maps of Aberdeen over the last 400 years, from James Gordon’s stunning map of the 1661 to today’s digital mapping. Over the centuries, maps were made for very different purposes, by different people and, by looking at who made these maps and why, we can reach a greater understanding of them. The talk will conclude with a brief demonstration of the National Library of Scotland’s maps website, where most of these maps can be viewed.

Christopher said: “Aberdeen has its own special map fingerprint – its own unique collection of maps made for particular purposes – and this talk will aim to share and explain this fingerprint, and show how useful maps are in understanding the past and present nature of Aberdeen.”

On Saturday 10 March, the Central Library will host an “anarchic fun” Viking workshop with author David MacPhail.

The hour-long event which begins at 10.45am - and which is part of the city’s Year of Young People 2018 celebrations – will feature David reading from his book series Thorfinn the Nicest Viking. The Thorfinn books are an ale-splashing, meat-ripping, hatchet-in-the-head kind of saga, in a world where manners cost nothing (literally) and politeness pays (usually with your life).

During the event - suitable for Primary 3 to Primary 5 youngsters - children will create their own Viking characters and become players in a terrific Aberdonian-themed story.

David said: “The event promises to be tremendous fun; I’ll be reading from one of my books, and dishing out crazy Viking names! Children will be able to draw their own Viking and help me create a local-based Viking story.

“I lived and studied in Aberdeen for many years, and absorbed a lot of local history in the process. It’s so exciting to be able to come back and visit, meet some readers and to be a part of Scottish Local History Week.”

The events are free but booking is essential For more information or to reserve a place, please contact Aberdeen City Libraries on 01224 652500 or e-mail LibraryEvents@aberdeencity.gov.uk