Margaret Bennett is a writer, international scholar, singer and broadcaster who is widely regarded as "Scotland's foremost folklorist". Qualifications aside, she wears her scholarship lightly, crediting any expertise to her upbringing in a family of tradition bearers, Gaelic on her mother's side and Lowland Scots on her father's.
As a performer, she often weaves stories and songs through presentations, and, as Scottish Arts critic Judy Moir wrote it's "rare to witness such a charismatic and fascinating raconteur". Margaret is a prize-winning author, with 15 books to her credit, and contributions to over 50 others, reflecting her interests in Scottish customs; rural traditions of work and recreation, songs, flowers trees and plants; industrial heritage (mining, mill-working, brick-making, engineering); wartime memories; and emigrant traditions of the Scottish diaspora. Appearances at festivals and conferences include the Edinburgh International Festival, the Fringe, and Edinburgh International Book Festival and many other book festivals; Celtic Connections (Glasgow); Celtic Colours (Cape Breton; The National Festival of Australia; the Library of Congress 'Robert Burns at 250' and Celtic Women International.
Margaret also works with media research, and has featured on radio, in TV documentaries, and film. As Hamish Henderson wrote, "Margaret embodies the spirit of Scotland." (Photo credit: Gonzalo Mazzei)