The Queen is to be presented with a new, specially commissioned book inspired by the beauty of a Scottish west coast island.
Braemar and Crathie minister Kenneth MacKenzie teamed up with the St Margaret’s Trust to present Iona as “the best place in the world” through the power of poetry, art and music.
The book In the Footsteps of Colm Cille includes illustrations by world-renowned expressionist painter John Lowrie Morrison and poems by Irish poet Francy Devine.
It also features a CD with new music by Tarland fiddler Paul Anderson, who has been regarded as one of finest musicians of his generation.
He said: “The whole thing has been a very moving experience. Iona tends to leave a very strong impression on people.”
The project was launched at a “unique” concert at the St Margaret’s arts and heritage venue in Braemar on Sunday, where the artists presented some of their work inspired by their time on Iona.
Following the “wonderful” performance, which received special wishes from the Queen, a specially-commissioned version of the book will be presented to her at Balmoral.
Speaking of what inspired his writing, Francy Devine said: “The whole project has been an eye-opener. I couldn’t believe how much of an impact going to Iona made on me.
“It was a thrilling experience. For a man in his seventies it was a new journey for me.”
John Lowrie Morrison added: “The book is marvellous. Iona to me is just the best place in the world.
“When I was there I’ve always said I’ll say to God if heaven isn’t like this I am going to be really angry.”