Words by Steven Hastings
Photo by Lottie Barker
The people and stories of Dumbarton West have featured in a community film about the local area.
Lottie Baker of Clifftop Projects and film maker Joe Dalton teamed up with Anne Pitcher, storyteller in residence for Dumbarton West.
Lottie said: ‘It was a great opportunity to work with local people to tell local stories and get them involved in film-making in a creative way.”
The filming took place in various locations in Dumbarton West on the first weekend of September 2022.
On the Sunday my Dad and I went to Havoc to join the film.
There were lots of children and adults sitting at picnic tables.
Lottie was handing out blue and green scarfs to everyone, my Dad and I both picked a blue one.
The stories for the film came from history, legends, and folklore of the local area.
Over the past year Anne has gathered stories from people, books and the local community and wove them into one story.
Joe and Lottie adapted this tale to make it work in a film setting and to get local people involved.
The main actors in the film were all children who go to Clifftop Projects and their parents.
The story starts at Knowetop Farm where an old couple make some bannocks – a cross between a scone and a cake.
Some of the mixture is left over so the old lady makes a wee bannock, with raisin eyes and nose and half a cherry for a mouth.
The Wee Cheeky Bannock comes alive, jumps out of the pan and goes on adventures through Dumbarton West.
He rolls through both Dalreoch and St Michael’s Primary Schools meeting people from history, including William Wallace and Robert the Bruce.
He also meets a fox and Clutha the Sea Serpent.
We were all to be the Sea Serpent. Lottie lined everyone up in a queue holding our scarfs. My Dad and I were near the back.
We were all given a number, when it was called, we were to move our scarfs in the air.
This was all being filmed by Joe and at one point he came past with the camera to film close ups.
A drone was also used to film us from above.
Next we all walked to a story-telling area.
A blanket was on the grass with a chair for Anne, the storyteller, to sit on with what looked like a pirate’s chest beside her.
The children sat on the blanket with the adults sitting or standing behind.
Anne told the story of the Wee Cheeky Bannock while being filmed.
The chest contained two puppets – a fox and a Sea Serpent.
In the second take Anne really entertained everyone and had the sea serpent
flying in the air.
The filming took about an hour and was lots of fun.
The Wee Cheeky Bannock film premiered in the Phoenix Centre in November.