Fresh Woods Pastures New
by Ian Niall

Ian Niall’s sublime elegy to a forgotten world: life as a boy on a farm in Galloway in the 1920s, a reminder of how rare this sort of childhood has become.

Author: Ian Niall

Introduction: Andrew McNeillie.

Published: March 2012


In stock

During an outbreak of meningitis in Glasgow in the 1920s Ian Niall was sent to live with his grandparents, then tenants of North Clutag Farm, Galloway, in south-west Scotland. It was another world compared to the industrial suburbs of Clydeside where he was born. The neighbours and farmhands he befriended seemed more at home in a Robert Burns poem than in the twentieth century, and throughout his childhood he had the freedom of the woods, the open fields and the moors.

It is this personal Eden which he returns to in Fresh Woods, Pastures New, reminding us how rare this sort of childhood has become, and how wonderful it must have been to roam so freely, absorbing the rhythms of the countryside as naturally as drawing breath.


Introduction by Andrew McNeillie

216 x 156mm sewn paperback with flaps
192 pages with illustrations by Barbara Greg & cover artwork by Archie Sutter Watt.
ISBN 978-1-908213-08-2

Additional Information

Weight350 g
Dimensions14 x 156 x 216 mm


  1. ‘There is beauty in both the descriptions and the described,’ writes Rebecca Harvey of Ian Niall’s Fresh Woods, Pastures New. ‘Some writers use the natural world, or the idea of wilderness, as a salve for the wounds caused by too much time spent in towns and cities. There is no such beautification here. Life is joyful, and festering death is sad, but both are treated with equal respect in his observations.’

    Rebecca’s excellent review was published this April by Caught by the River, marking Little Toller’s first book of Ian Niall essays.

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