Down memory lane

A look through the Journal and Gazette’s archives

School salaries

This week in 1894

FIRE OUTBREAK: Shortly after 11pm the previous Saturday night, there was a small fire in one of the drying rooms in Bo’ness Pottery. The fire was caused by ash from the stove falling onto the floor. The fire brigade was called out. However, they did not need to connect their hose as the fire was extinguished before much damage was done.

ANDERSON ACADEMY: A circular letter had been sent out to a number of parents of children who were likely to want secondary education. The letter said that, in order for the Academy to become successful, parents would be asked to pay 2s a month. Those who couldn’t afford it would not be asked to pay, nor would families with more than one child attending the school.

COAL AND IRON:There were 11,250 tonnes of coal and 75 tonnes of pig iron shipped at Bo’ness in the past week.

TEACHING SALARIES: A meeting was held to discuss payment for the year ahead. At Borrowstounness School, Miss Brown’s salary as headmistress was fixed at £85. Miss Craig, headmistress of the infant school, would receive £80 per year.

Officer killed

This week in 1944

PILOT KILLED: Official intimation had been received that Pilot Officer James Lowrie, of Linlithgow Bridge, had been killed. He was reported missing from operations last June but he was now presumed dead. He went missing just a fortnight after his marriage and his coming of age had been celebrated just six months previously.

CONCERT: Mr Panelli’s Road Show Concert Party of 39 children gave a fine performance in the town hall where there was a large audience in attendance. The concert was given to the crew of a ship. There was singing, dancing, piano, accordian selections and comedy acts.

COURT CASES: Two women were found not guilty of stealing tea coupons at Linlithgow Sheriff Court. Meanwhile, Peter Morrison was fined 20s or 10 days imprisonment after pleading guilty to failing to comply with a school attendance notice in respect of his son.

BUS YOUTHS: Two Bathgate youths admitted having travelled on the luggage rack of a bus going to Uphall. They were fined 20s.

Crowning lady

This week in 1984

BO’NESS FAIR: Jean Brown had been chosen to crown the Bo’ness Fair Queen. Jean could remember watching 35 crownings but she had never expected to be chosen to do the honours. She went on to crown Queen Elect Alison Cross at the Fair in Glebe Park on June 29.

THEATRICAL PRODUCTIONS: Bo’ness Amateur Operatic Society members were on stage with Finian’s Rainbow, wowing audiences with their professional performance. Meanwhile, youngsters at Linlithgow Primary School presented ‘Wee Macgregor’.

CLOCK REPLACEMENT: A town’s clock was replaced more than 20 years after it was deemed unsafe and demolished. The clock had been sadly missed by the local community so there was much delight when Bo’ness Community Council decided to look into having a new clock face made, while local iron founders Ballantine’s agreed to make a new pillar for it.

FISHING POPULARITY: Beecraigs Loch was one of the most popular fishing areas in West Lothian. Anglers had flooded the District Council with applications for permits.

Lottery winner

This week in 2004

LOTTERY WINNER: Torphichen teenager Lisa Dalgrain celebrated becoming a millionaire - with a soft drink! At just 17, she was too young to have a glass of champagne to mark the £1.56 million windfall. Instead, she opted for Irn Bru! She decided to buy a lucky dip ticket because her initials are LD. She purchased the ticket at Tesco in Bathgate where she worked part time.

HALLS CONFUSION: Mystery surrounded the future of the Victoria Halls building in Linlithgow High Street. It was believed that a planned sale had fallen through. However, in better news for the High Street, of the 11 vacant properties, six were already under offer.

DISNEY DANCERS: Pupils at Marion Sweeney School of Dance were preparing to head to Disneyland in California. The 12 dancers from Linlithgow and Bo’ness were the first from Scotland to be chosen to take part in the week-long dance excellence course in Los Angeles. The talented youngsters had also raised more than £12,000 to fund the trip of a lifetime.