Book Grace Banks
Grace Banks works as a storyteller, singer and outdoor-discovery facilitator mainly in and around Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.
She had great regard for Traveller, storyteller and balladeer Stanley Robertson and also respects poet and author Sheena Blackhall. She writes, ‘Both of these people have been such an encouragement to me and influential in my creative development.’
Over the last years Grace has increasingly worked in schools to support literacies in the outdoors, using stories, play and activities.
In her varied work, she was employed by Aberdeen University as community co-ordinator for a local year-long project, organising workshops and training for locals, travellers, teachers and volunteers.
Grace runs song classes, storytelling for families, sessions for schools and also outdoor explores which can include story/song walks, story-making/creative writing/song creation with natural/historical inspiration; tool use, fire-making and other fun activities, supporting groups to experience nature in different ways.
Grace has co-authored two books with Sheena Blackhall: ‘Aberdeenshire Folk Tales’ and ‘Scottish Urban Myths and Ancient Legends’, published by History Press.
She has compiled ‘A Puckle o Sangs’, a book of songs gathered from NE Scotland songsters and published by AUP.
Most recent releases are ‘Songs From the Wood’ – a children’s album of woodland songs and tales, and ‘Tales in your Pocket’ – a handy outdoor resource booklet for families, schools and groups.
‘Much of my creative work is inspired by the natural world and from the wonders and wisdom found within the ancient stories. Today many lifestyles revolve around screen dependence; work and play are now indoor experiences and stress and anxiety are compounded by the accompanying lack of exercise and fresh air. One of my greatest joys is to enable others to be outdoors in the green – to explore, discover and enjoy their surroundings; I find songs and stories are naturally integral to this.’