A Semi -Regular Photo Blog about Life in Northern New South Wales, Australia.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Tartan Poles

Since 2000 Maclean artist Linda El Mir has been decorating the power poles of Maclean with the traditional tartan patterns of the clans. There must be now hundreds of these plaid poles around the main street and on the roads that lead into town. There is a small cost involved.

The history of the Scots in Maclean is linked to the Highland Clearances of the 1860's when thousands were forced off the land as the Agricultural and Industrial Revolutions gained pace. Most arrived in Australia on a free or assisted passage with nothing and were given land under the Free Selectors Act.
There is of course the irony of the poor and dispossessed of Caledonia building new lives on land that was stolen off the local Aboriginal clans.


  1. Very interesting decorations on the poles and a very nice way to remember the Scots heritage. That is all new since I last visited - which I must say was a few years ago.

  2. A novel feature in a township giving it a very special identity of heritage!

  3. amazing how intricate the patterns are
    interesting and, as you say, ironic history

  4. What a great, novel feature indeed! And such a colorful way to remember the history/heritage of a township! Wonderful post for the day!


  5. I think it is great to see this sort of thing. Traditions wise Australia really does not have any of its own in regards to white inhabitants, & the Old Country traditions seem to be losing popularity. A great pitty. We need something to remind us of who we are & where we came from.
    Regards, Keith.

  6. Captured beautifully!

    My Ruby Tuesday, hope you'd come and see.

  7. Nice idea, those painted poles.
    Your history lesson here is something to think about.

  8. What a wonderful way to preserve the heritage! And a colorful way to decorate the town!

  9. Very interesting!
    Have a wonderful day!
    Lea's Menagerie

  10. Me, having Irish ancestors from Antrim County and Cavan County....I especially like your post today!!! Very interesting.

    FRUITS of my LABOR is the link for my Tuesday post...if you can find time, I'd love to have you stop by and keep me company!!!

  11. Beautiful shots. Happy RT2!

    Mine's here.

  12. Interesting bit of Australian history. That's quite a huge project decorating all those poles with tartans!

  13. Lovely rubies!

    Strawberries for Ruby Tuesday, come and have some.

  14. Wow, what a spectacular and fine idea !

  15. Unique design, like it..

    Visiting for Ruby Tuesday 2- hope you can stop by:)


  16. The tartan poles are a fun addition to the landscape of the coast


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...