Editor’s Diary: In Praise Of Benches!


I’m a big fan of benches! So, in this week’s Editor’s Diary, I thought I’d share a few of my favourites.

The one in my first picture is in the west coast village of Mallaig. Isn’t it beautiful?

It sits just off the main road, looking out across the harbour to distant Skye.

I wonder who Helen was? She must have loved the view, and the natural world. Look at those lovingly carved and painted animals and flowers.

The bench tells me that she was greatly loved and is much missed. It’s a lovely tribute.

A place to enjoy the view

I think that’s what I like most about benches. That, someone, somewhere, has seen a glorious view and decided to place a bench there so that others can enjoy it, too.

Sometimes benches are placed at the top of a steep climb, just at the point where walkers will appreciate a rest.

Benches are thoughtful. They’re kind, and generous, and selfless. In most cases, the person who places them will never see the pleasure they bring to others.

And they’re also a way to remember loved ones. I always read the inscriptions on those benches. Some are poignant; others are warm, even funny. They’re all a tribute to people — and often pets — who are missed.


Photograph by Angela Gilchrist.

My next picture is of a bench in my local park.

Sitting between two majestic oak trees, with a view of the River Tay, it’s a lovely spot to stop whatever the season.


Photograph by Angela Gilchrist.

And my third picture is from a snowy day last winter.

I walk this way most Sundays and always stop to enjoy the stunning view of the distant Perthshire hills from this vantage point.

Though it’s not always as cold as this!

A few years ago, we carried a feature in the “Friend” about a social media account called My Favourite Bench.

It’s hugely popular. Seems I’m not alone in my fondness for a well-placed bench!

For more from Angela’s Editor’s Diary, click the tag below.

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Angela Gilchrist

Angela is Former Editor-in-Chief of “The People’s Friend” magazine. Her passions include cats, Highland ponies, good books, vegetarian food and long walks in the Scottish countryside. Her favourite place to get away from it all is the magical Isle of Skye.