Plot Summary

Nine plot points are represented. Split into three time periods; 18th century (highland clearance), 19th century (stag hunting and tourism) and 20th century (North Sea Oil)

18th Century

  • Highland Clearances - tenant farmers and whole Highland communities are removed from their homes to make way for more profitable sheep farming
  • Highland resistance - many Highlanders, particularly women, resist eviction. But they are subjected to violence from landowners and their representatives
  • Trial of Patrick Sellar - The Countess of Sutherland's factor is acquitted for the his part in the death of a woman burned to death in her croft

19th Century

  • Shooting estates - Lady Phosphate and Lord Crask represent the second wave of clearances - where land is taken over for hunting estates as playgrounds for the upper classes
  • Tourism - Queen Victoria makes the Highlands a fashionable tourist destination. The industry continues into the 20th Century, although those running it, like Andy McChuckemup, are ignorant about the true culture of the Highlands

20th Century

  • North Sea oil discovered - When oil is discovered in 1962, the British Government give rights for exploration to private industry, including American companies. The companies profit and set the rules of employment, to the detriment of local people.
  • Oil companies buy up land - Texas Jim represents rich, foreign oil tycoons who openly exploit natural resources for profit with no thought for the consequences. Politicians, represented by Whitehall, are held responsible for selling off oil and the Highlands so cheaply
  • Highlanders face an uncertain future - A crofter and his wife are forced to leave the Highlands because of extortionate rent prices. History threatens to repeat itself without the people forcing change