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Mermaids and Muggles: Fantastic Tales Kintyre Folk

Release Date: 6 November 2017

The Mermaids and Muggles exhibition has been developed by LiveArgyll Archives, Campbeltown Museum and the Argyll Papers, Inveraray Castle as part of the Heritage Lottery Funded ‘Written in the Landscape’ project.

Mermaids and Muggles explores the connections that may exist between us and our ancestors, both physical characteristics and more intangible connections.

The portraits and documents featured in the exhibition are from the Anne Campbell Collection held by the Argyll Papers and from the LiveArgyll Archives. Anne was the wife of Duncan Campbell, Sheriff Substitute of Kintyre in the early nineteenth century, and an ancestor of the author, JK Rowling.

The story of the Corphin mermaid, recorded by Duncan Campbell in his role as Sheriff Substitute, provides a springboard for investigating fantastical tales from Kintyre, how and why they arise, and the connections that might exist between generations who believed in fantastic creatures and a descendant who writes about fantastical worlds.

The exhibition opens on Tuesday 17 October and runs until 16 December. Admission is free and the exhibition can be accessed during library opening hours.

Workshops for local school pupils, P4 to P7, will investigate the fantastical tales and Kintyre folk from 7 to 11 November. Workshops must be booked in advance, please contact for further information and a booking form.

A ‘drop in’ session for anyone who wishes to share more fantastical tales and the stories of their own Kintyre folk or to chat with the archivists from LiveArgyll and Inveraray Castle, will be held at 11.00am or 2.00pm on Sat 4 November in Campbeltown Library. For further information, please contact

Account of a mermaid sighting, Inverary Castle Papers