A KILBARCHAN grandmother is aiming to revive the ancient art of storytelling in the Renfrewshire village.

Anne Pitcher, 67, and her brother Andy Shanks, 64, performed their self-penned story ‘Tales of Land and Sea: From Smugglers’ Coast to Ancient Handloom Weaving Village’ for locals earlier this month.

The show told the history of the communities of Kilbarchan and Johnshaven, on the north-east coast of Scotland, where Andy lives, through the stories of those who have lived there.

Anne, who is a professional storyteller, said it was the first live event in the village for two years and had been commissioned as part of the Scottish International Storytelling Festival.

More than 25 people attended the performance at the Old Kilbarchan Library Centre.

Anne said: “It went so well. Everyone enjoyed it. Many had never been to a storytelling event before.

“There was a mixture of people who were all interested in stories about Kilbarchan.”

Anne will stage another storytelling event – Kilbarchan Tales and Trees by the Path – in the village this Sunday.

It takes place from 2pm at the old Kilbarchan railway station, next to the Sustrans cycle path, and is free of charge.

For the past 40 years, Anne has lived with her husband in the village’s former police station.

She is one of nine field workers for Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland – a charitable initiative for retelling and preserving the traditional stories of old communities.

Anne, who has two grown-up sons, is also on the Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland Directory.

The former nursery teacher says none of the tales she performs live are written down but, instead, are part of a rich tradition of oral storytelling.

Anne added: “I don’t read from a book, they are all told orally. Every story in Tales of Land and Sea was researched by Andy and I.

“I’ve been a professional storyteller for the last 12 years. It’s important that we keep that tradition alive of telling stories through words and songs.”