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Scottish Memories

No-one should go through dementia on their own…

Over 80,000 people in Scotland live with dementia every day. So do their carers, partners and families. Alzheimer Scotland provides information, advice and specialist dementia support.

Find out more Call our Dementia Helpline free on 0808 808 3000 (open 24 hours).


www.alz s c o t . o r g

Alzheimer Scotland – Action on Dementia is a company limited by guarantee, registered in Scotland 149069. Registered Office: 22 Drumsheugh Gardens, Edinburgh EH3 7RN. It is recognised as a charity by the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator, no. SC022315.

Scottish Memories • December 2011 Our cover image, painted by David Young, features a festive Princes Street in Edinburgh in the 1950s


M m i is published by Warners Group Publications plc, 5th Floor, 31-32 Park Row, Leeds, LS1 5JD, UK website:

PUBLISHER Janet Davison

EDITORIAL Managing Editor: Matt Hill Tel: 0113 200 2912

Deputy Editor: Rachel Bellerby Tel: 0113 200 2922

Consultant Editor: George Forbes Contributors: Myra Douglas, Bobby Harvey, Aileen Torrance, Kath Garner, Jennifer McBryde, Frank Bruce, Linda Brown, Lisa Main, Janet Traill, Landscape photography: Dennis Hardley (details on page 54).

PRODUCTION Senior Designer: Nathan Ward

Designer: Robert Lynch

ADVERTISING Advertising Sales Representative: Alison Fraser Tel: 0141 946 8708

MARKETING Lauren Roberts Tel: 0113 200 2916

SUBSCRIPTIONS Collette Dimbleby Tel: 01778 392020

PRINTED BY Warners (Midlands) plc, The Maltings, Manor Lane, Bourne, Lincs PE10 9PH

DISTRIBUTION BY Warners Group Publications plc West Street, Bourne, Lincs, PE10 9PH

ON SALE: January issue on sale: 15 December, 2011 Receive your copy direct to your door by subscribing See page 23 for our fantastic subscription offer

BACK ISSUES Back issues are available from the Scottish Memories subscriptions department, tel: 01778 392020. ISSN 0968-7874 DISCLAIMER The views expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of the publisher. Every care is taken to ensure that the contents of the magazine are accurate, but the publisher assumes no responsibility for errors. While reasonable care is taken when accepting advertisements, the publisher cannot accept responsibility for any resulting unsatisfactory transactions, but will immediately investigate any written complaints.

COPYRIGHT No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted without the prior written permission of the publisher.



M m i

W lc m t My earliest memories of Christmas conjure up images of beautifully wrapped presents stacked high, and the excitement of opening them all during the course of Christmas morning as the smell of turkey (mmm!) and brussels sprouts (yuck!) wafted across the house.

But with two elder sisters, I can also remember the almost unbearable wait for the pair

But with two elder sisters, I can also remember the almost unbearable wait for the pair of them to drag themselves out of their bedrooms while I had been sat up wide-eyed in bed since about 4am trying to listen for the sound of sleigh bells and waiting for daylight to come! The long wait was always worth it, and I can still remember most of the presents I received from Santa – a shiny red electric guitar was the one that left me gobsmacked – television programmes we watched, the food we all ate, and the laughs we shared!

It is these wonderful memories that come back to me today, as my family and I prepare for this year’s festivities. These days we often worry that Christmas has become too commercial as kids demand the latest gadgets and gizmos in their letters to the North Pole and high street shops clamour for our attention, but for most of us the spirit of the season is just as strong as it ever was, even if times have changed a little.

It’s been great fun to share readers’ memories of Christmas for this issue (page 14) and to see how the season has been celebrated in years gone by. Here’s hoping this Christmas is just as memorable for you all.

C t ts 5 Then and now £1 million funding for historic buildings, ancient Olympics at Pictavia, and the international porridge making championships!

12 Memories mailbox Readers’ letters. Plus, George Forbes’ popular Writing to Remember column

Matt Hill, Editor

35 A Scot in South Africa The story of an Edinburgh businessman who, thanks to a chance encounter, was buried thousands of miles from home 36 Made in Mauchline The story of Tartanware, the popular souvenirs which were one of Ayrshire’s most successful exports

14 My first… Christmas Readers share memories of their Christmas firsts, including Christmas on the beach and wartime festivities

18 Scotland’s last explorers TV presenter Neil Oliver follows in the footsteps of four Victorian explorers

36 From the archives Festive items from the past 39 Reader memories Christmas at the fire station, a Sixties Christmas, amateur dramatics in Ayrshire,and growing up on the ‘Costa del Clyde’!

22 The secret detective The fascinating story of the man who inspired Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s most famous creation, Sherlock Holmes

24 Year to remember: 1964 Films, music, headlines and prices from the mid Sixties

27 Destination Argyll Your in-depth travel guide to a picturesque region steeped in history. Win! Historic Scotland family membership worth £84!

44 Oh, what a circus! Aileen Torrance recalls the sights, sounds and smells of the Kelvin Hall Circus

48 Sights and sounds of Scotland We give you the lowdown on the latest books and CDs with a Scottish flavour

50 A country constable Our 1950s fiction series following the adventures of Fifties WPC Joan McReadie concludes as Joan deals with a spate of poaching in the village

32 Thou shalt not! We remember the days when whistling or hanging out the washing on a Sunday were serious transgressions

52 Puzzles WIN! Put the kettle on, sit back and relax with our page of puzzles and competitions!

J Sc M m i today n v 2012 c l n r n i ry! S ag 23…