From our postbag



Sir, – I refer to the front page article in the Journal and Gazette of Friday, January 11, 2013, regarding the Clarendon Farm proposal.

Albeit this proposal is at an early stage for discussion, there are a number of basic elements that will be difficult to achieve.

In particular, reference is made in the article to the need to maintain limited impact on the landscape and setting of Linlithgow from any development proposals. I will be interested to see how this can be achieved in this location.

One only need walk along the northern path around the loch and the canal to foresee how any development at Clarendon Farm will replace a significant area of one of the few remaining rural/green landscapes when viewed from much of the northern aspects of the town.

I would suggest this proposal is premature pending an overall appraisal for the town.

Alex Gordon

by email

Loch levels

Sir, – With reference to Mr Martin’s e-mail in last week’s Journal and Gazette.

If he is a local resident, he will have had an opportunity to see how slowly the Burghmuir loch has drained in the last 12 days.

There is still a substantial area of flooding.

My specific concerns were the M9 motorway and the housing to the south of the proposed site.

I agree that, if the elevation of the flooding is above the maximum annual height of the loch, the flooding could be drained west and into the loch by gravity.

This would entail creating a large trench or drain through/
under or around the Oracle offices and Bonningtoun House.

I would assume this would 
require the agreement of the local council, at least two landowners and the local highway agency.

Any drainage scheme of this type would also add to the quantity of water draining to the loch, hence the loch level will rise. This may be of concern to the householders on the edges of the loch.

If I can raise another point, there has been a deafening silence on the accommodation for additional pupils at Linlithgow Academy from the proposed new housing.

Will this result in all future secondary aged pupils from the Springfield area, plus the new housing, having to be bussed to the new Winchburgh Academy or will Mr McKenzie have to add another storey to Linlithgow Academy, or lose even more of the inadequate sports field ? – Yours etc.,



by email

Katie Wearie

Sir, – An article in the Journal and Gazette dated March 19, 2010, heralded the statue of Katie Wearie.

This statue, in the words of the reporter, depicts ‘the figure of Katie Wearie, a legendary cattle drover resting under a tree’.

I responded to the article with a letter making reference to a minute dated January 1817 I had copied from the town council minute book.

It referred to ‘Katty Wearie’s dub’ which was to be drained, an event I included in my book ‘‘Minute by Minute’’ which is based on the records of council meetings for the period 1739-1848.

The grassed area where the memorial has been erected is part of the dub or pond which probably existed for centuries. It was outside the town wall and would certainly have provided a convenient drinking hole for horses and cattle.

I recently found an earlier reference in the minute books which refers to ‘Kettie Weir’s dub’ leaving little doubt as to this legendary person’s existence. The idea that she may have been a drover seems quite possible. – Yours etc.,



by email

Family plea

Sir, – My grandfather’s birth certificate states that he was born James Curnas (should be Conn) in 1869 at an address which looks like Coonbus Land or Coombies Land or Coombes Land. Cannot find anything similar in Bo’ness maps. Can you help? – Yours etc.,


by email

Closure fear

Sir, - I wish to pass an opinion about the Clydesdale Bank premises being allowed change of use to a tearoom.

I think it is unfair to the other businesses in the town as there are a lot of eating places and they have to pay rent and council tax. Another business will cause some of the originals to close. - Yours etc.,




Grateful thanks

Sir, - I would be grateful if I could, through you newspaper, thank everyone who helped me when I fell outside William Hill’s on North Street, Bo’ness.

A special thanks to the lady with the pram and the gentleman who came to my asssistance and the betting office staff who cared for me until an ambulance arrived. Thank you all so very much. - Yours etc.,


Thomson Place, Bo’ness