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A trawl through the Journal and Gazette archives

An ugly duckling

This week in 1894

ODD ONE OUT: Gas manager James Philip discovered a stranger in a newly-hatched brood of ducklings - a fluffy little ducky with FOUR fully-formed legs. The changeling live for only a day and was adopted by Councillor Peter Clark, who suggested preserving the bird by taxidermy.

JUST CHAMPION: Butcher’s son Alex Learmonth of Linlithgow again won the Race for the Braes, the annual no-holds barred run from Linlithgow to Blackness.

GET OUT OF TOWN: Street singer William James was in court before Bailie Morrison for assault on a hotel door after Marches Day celebrations. James eventually pleaded guilty to kicking the door and ringing the bell ‘violently’ and other disorderly behaviours. He was spared incarceration with an order to leave town with immediate effect.

BLOOMING GOOD: William Laird, Kinneil Gardens Bo’ness, was offering for sale ‘‘strong and healthy’’ plants for the garden. On offer were geraniums at two shillings a dozen, violas were one shilling a dozen and marigolds, sixpence a dozen.

SAILING: The steamship Jupiter was sailing from Bo’ness to Alloa and Stirling, return fare, one shilling.

Subscription appeal

This week in 1944

CASH PLEA: The National YMCA renewed its appeal for subscriptions to its war service fund to help install mobile canteens close to the front lines in France.

INVESTMENT URGED: A national ‘‘Support the Invasion’’ campaign encouraged the King’s loyal subjects to invest in savings bonds and stamps “to help crown with success the greatest adventure in History.”

KILLED IN ACTION: Mrs Wardrop of Grangepans mourned the death of her son and only child David (27), who was killed in Italy while on active service with the Tank Corps.

It was a double tragedy for the family as David’s father was killed in action during the First World War.

WOUNDED: Meanwhile, Wilson Jackson of Waggon Road, is being treated for shrapnel wounds in an Italian military hospital. He had been transferred from Bo’ness Home Guard to Tank Corps.

ADVERTISING: On the home front, ladies were looking after their complexion with Knight’s Castile soap; stepping out in style in Drooko raincoats; and stockingless women were trying out the latest advice to take care of ugly, hairy legs with soap and a pumice stone.

Beauty contest

This week in 1984

NEW EVENT: Bo’ness Fair staged its first-ever beauty contest in the Fair’s history. Teenagers aged 16-18 were invited to strut their stuff on the catwalk for a £15 prize.

BOXING CLEVER: A formal dinner and wrestling bout almost suffered a knock-out before Linlithgow Civic Week festivities began. The canvas took a dive when gusty winds caused the outdoor marquee to collapse. However, the fight and dinner went ahead as scheduled thanks to the quick-thinking host and farmer John Kerr. He rounded up his staff who re-erected the marquee and the event went off without further hitch.

HOMECOMING: A Kansas City woman decided there’s no place like home when she visited the Bo’ness place of birth of her grandmother Euphemia Hutchison who was born in Bo’ness in 1857 and emigrated with her parents to Kansas when she was eight years old.

NEW SIGNINGS: The 1984-5 Linlithgow Rose season looked full of promise after two new signings by Linlithgow Rose. Malcolm Morrison signed up from Camelon and Alex Cunningham was poached from Arniston Rangers. 
Striker Dennis Gray announced his retirement after just one season with Rose.

Beam ‘em up!

This week in 2004

SPACE RACE: Astronauts and astro-scientists beamed down to Linlithgow and St Kentigern’s Academies in a bid to get more school pupils thinking about a career in science.

Following an invitation from the Scottish Space School Foundation and with funding from the International Space Community, the real life ‘Buzz Lightyears’ gave inspirational talks on the cutting edge work and research going on at NASA and pushing the frontiers of space exploration.

PARENT’S ANGER: An irate father referred a primary school selection board to the education ombudsman, despite successfully overturning a decision by the pupil placement department to refuse his application for a place for his son. While this decision was overturned at an appeal, the disgruntled parent was so furious at the errors made during the selection process for Linlithgow Bridge Primary School, that he took the case to the ultimate schools watchdog.

GALA OCCASION: It was a day to remember for Provost Bruce Jamieson and his wife Keri with double reasons - their grand-daughter was brought into the world on the eve of Linlithgow gala day.