This set of papers arose from a Discussion Meeting held in the Department of Geology & Applied Geology, University of Glasgow, on 9–10 September 1997. The aim of the Meeting was to review the progress which had been made in resolving some of the more controversial aspects of the pre-Silurian Caledonide geology of the British Isles and Scandinavia. It was also held to mark the retirements of two well-known Caledonide geologists: Professors Bernard Leake and Donald Ramsay. There were 34 talks and poster contributions, and the meeting was attended by over 100 people. We would like to thank our colleague Tim Dempster for helping to convene and organize the meeting.
It was fitting that the Meeting should be held in the Gregory Building, which was named after the Glasgow Professor who not only pioneered work on rift tectonics and regional uplift in Africa, but also wrote a perceptive book on ‘Dalradian Geology’ (Gregory 1931). In this work, Gregory pointed out that his observations were made over a period of 25 years, being made on ‘recreational weekends’, and mainly in winter ‘when the ground is less obscured by vegetation and the Highland mountains most attractive’: an approach motivated by a spirit of enquiry, and very productive, but one which would be out of step with current research strategies.
We would like to dedicate this set of papers to Mark Piasecki who died on 13 June 1999. Mark was the first person to draw attention to major problems concerning the relationship