New Linlithgow Provost is first woman to hold the role

Elizabeth Park was elected as the first female Provost of Linlithgow at this week’s AGM of the Court of the Deacons.

Thursday, 11th November 2021, 10:03 am
Provost park is the first female to hold the role of Provost and will be supported by Senior Bailie Derek Green, Middle Bailie Lee Frickleton, Baron Bailie Martin Brown and newly elected Junior Bailie William Calder. Photo by Andrew West.

Elizabeth has served on the Deacons Court since Past Provost Hector Woodhouse was in the role over 25 years ago. Elizabeth came into the Court as the Deacon of the Galaday, and took on roles within the Entertainments committee, Entertainment Convener and Finance and Administration Convener, with the last 10 years as Bailie.

She said: “When you join the Deacons Court, you never think that one day you will become Provost, but here I am.”

Provost Park is a proud Black Bitch and is married to another proud Black Bitch, Tom. Growing up and living in Linlithgow, Provost Park knows the importance of the Riding of Linlithgow Marches and keeping the traditions of the town alive for generations to come.

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Provost John Cunningham handed over the chain of office to Provost Elizabeth Park. Photo by Andrew West.

Provost Park is still pinching herself and is excited at what’s to come, and when asked what the Marches means to her, she said “everything.”

“I feel humbled, honoured and privileged to be holding the role of Provost and I am looking forward to the day when we have a real Marches again, and no more virtual Marches,” she added.

“More importantly, I am looking forward to seeing the people of the town and visitors alike taking part in and celebrating the Riding of Linlithgow Marches once again.”

With Provost Park taking over the office of Provost, the AGM also saw movement amongst the Bailies. Derek Green is now Senior Bailie and Lee Frickleton has moved into the role of Middle Bailie.

William Calder was elected by the Court to take on the role of Junior Bailie.

Mr Calder had been a member of the Deacons Court for nine years and has held the role of F&A Convener and is currently Treasurer to the Deacons Court. The reality of being elected as Junior Bailie is still sinking in for him.

William, who lived in Linlithgow Bridge and Whitecross before returning to live in Linlithgow, said: “Having been brought up in the town, I know the community spirit and friendship shown on Marches Day is something very special.

“My Granda was from Linlithgow Bridge so the Marches has always been a key date in the calendar for my family. I can’t imagine being anywhere else other than in Linlithgow on the first Tuesday after the Second Thursday in June.”

William, who has also served 10 years on the committee of Linlithgow Rose Football Club, is looking forward to Marches 2022 and said that it is an honour and privilege to represent the Deacons Court as Junior Bailie and to play his part in ensuring the Marches traditions continue in the future.