The three brass balls are making a comeback

Shoppers in Falkirk town centre can’t fail to notice the reappearance of a famous sign that was a familiar sight in my childhood years.

The opening day at Grangemouth airport

Grangemouth Airport –memories of what might have been

It is over three years since the Grangemouth Air Cadets inspired the creation of the fantastic Spitfire Memorial on the Bo’ness Road near the site of the old airfield.

Fun times at the foot of Falkirk Steeple

Steeple cockerel sparks debate

The golden cockerel that has stood proudly at the top of the landmark Falkirk Steeple for centuries has been taken down for a well deserved makeover.

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The Dobbie Hall in Larbert opened in 1901

Memorials in stone abound in Falkirk district

On Sir Christopher Wren’s tomb in St Paul’s Cathedral it famously reminds us that “if you seek his memorial look about you”.

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Imaginative portrait of Blind Harry by Alexander Stoddart.

William Wallace – the nation’s favourite son

Describing the people and events of the distant past is no easy task and it’s obviously more difficult the further back you go.

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High Street looking west 1960s

A stroll along the High Street of the 50s

This week I am continuing my stroll down the High Street of the late 1950s after a brief stop in the Pie Office in the shadow of the steeple where pubs abound.

Troops go over the top.

Somme – the largest military encounter in history

In the spring of 1916 over a million French and German soldiers faced one another at Verdun on the Western Front.

The Railway Inn at Dennyloanhead. a reminder thge villages were once linked by the Bonnybridge-Kilsyth railway

A look at life in the villages east of Banknock

Lying along the line of the main road west from Bonnybridge are several small villages which over time have merged into one continuous community.

Charing Cross with the library and Free Church. On the far right is the former Parish Church.

Charing Cross – a reminder of a King’s homage

Charing Cross in Grangemouth is one of those local historic hot spots I have written about often in this column.

The Westerglen transmitter hall

Westerglen and the arrival of the wireless

I have had a lifetime’s love affair with the radio (which I can’t stop calling the ‘‘wireless’’) which remains undimmed in this age of multiple TV ‘‘platforms’’ and other exotic ways of tuning into the world.

Science and Art School

Victorian Falkirk’s passion for education

The prominent building standing on the north-east corner of Park Street, intriguingly named ‘Silk House’, has nothing at all to do with the exotic textile trade but everything to do with Victorian Falkirk’s passion for education.

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The gate in situ at Grahamston Foundry

Grahamston gates – the biggest in the world

One hundred and thirty years ago this month the city of Edinburgh witnessed the official opening of one of those great international festivals which our Victorian forefathers did so well.

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Spotlight on Larbert

Community scratching its head as axe falls on Larbert Old

Spare a thought today for the faithful congregation of Larbert Old Parish Church.

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Blackness Castle is the ship that never sailed...

Blackness Castle is the ship that never sailed...

The first castle I ever visited as a child was not the famous pile in Edinburgh or the fantastic fortress overlooking Stirling but the “ship that never sailed” jutting out into the Forth at Blackness.

A Polish parade at Victoria Park

Last link with Falkirk’s Polish heritage

It is always sad when the bulldozers move in and a well-known landmark bites the dust, especially when the building is the last link with an important part of our modern history and with those who helped build a new Falkirk after the Second World War.

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Site of Bo'ness witch burnings

A town with history of a burning witch issue

A couple of weeks ago I was at the Lyceum in Edinburgh to see a new production of Arthur Miller’s celebrated play The Crucible with its chilling account of the famous witch trials in Salem, Massachusetts in the late 17th century.

A 19th century map showing position of the five ports

Falkirk’s other wall and five town ports

When Falkirk folk talk about the ‘Wall’ they most often mean the barrier erected by those pesky Romans to keep barbarians from Fife and further north away from the peaceful territories here in the south.

Radicals’ brave fight for rights at Bonnymuir

Radicals’ brave fight for rights at Bonnymuir

This week sees the 270th anniversary of the Jacobite disaster at Culloden accepted as the last battle fought on British soil.

Fallen soldiers -from top Neil Thomson, Peter Forsyth and Peter Johnston.  Bottom David Rodger, Peter Wilson, Charles Main

Remembering Muiravonside’s fallen heroes of the Great War

Last Saturday I was in Maddiston at the launch of an excellent new book by local historian David Leask called No More Forgotten Heroes.

Tar works fire

Fire blazed for three days at Camelon Tar Works

No one who was in Falkirk district in November1973 will ever forget it!

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