David Leask's Maddiston Pages

Muiravonside Parish, the way it was.

Cairneymount Church

Cairneymount Church

£2000 and a parcel of land (part of which was occupied by a small row of houses called Cairneymount) was bequeathed to the Heritors of Muiravonside Parish by John G Urquart of Vellore in 1902, for the building of a church on the hill above Maddiston.  Mr.  Urquart felt that Muiravonside Kirk was too far for the people of Maddiston to travel; the church was finished in 1904.

The architect was Mr. J.D. Strang of Falkirk.

A memorial stone was laid by the Rev. John Mc Murtie D.D, Moderator of the General Assembly and in the cavity behind the stone were placed; some coins of the realm, a record of the bequest and the building of the church, copies of the Scotsman, Falkirk Herald, Peoples Journal and the Magazine Life and Work for July 1904.

Cairneymount was a busy church in the thirties, the evening service was held here every Sunday at six o'clock, the people being called to worship by the bell rung by Jim Bryce.

The Sunday school was held here between three and four o'clock. 

On the day before the school holidays the children came up the hill for the school service.

In 1973 the church was much altered and became a church hall as well as a church, in 1980 a small hall and toilets were added at the back.

There was at least one house here on the hill before the church was built, I don't know whether it was demolished to make way for the church or not but one of the men who died in the Brickworks explosion at Manuelrigg lived at Cairneymount.

It is possible that the houses were either not lived in any more or pulled down at an earlier date.

The church and grounds have been sold and the church is currently (2010) being changed into two flats. 

The next building encountered as we walk down from the church (while we keep looking to the right) is:

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Owner, James Wilson, Teacher, Jesmond-Dene, Polmont.

Southhouse was a small one-storey building, the shop was an even lower addition built on to the north end and like most shops in the village seemed to sell everything and smell of everything sold.  Mrs. Donaldson ran the shop here until it was taken over by the Hogan family.

The house was used as store for the shop for a while then the shop closed and they both fell into disrepair and were eventually demolished. 

 Although this house was the residence of Agnes Donaldson it is probably best remembered as the residence of James (Cocker) Wilson, Mr. Wilson was the headmaster of Maddiston School, he was a small man with half moon glasses a strict, but fair, teacher.

Southhouse has now gone and new houses have been built in what was the back yard of the house.

 The next houses are round the corner on the High Road.

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Enterkine Cottage

Jessie and Isabel Eccles lived here, Jessie was a nurse and Isabel was the Assistant Registrar.

The Registrars office was in one of the front rooms of the house.

Everyone remembers Jessie and Isabel as two quiet gentle ladies, who had a good word for everyone.

Enterkine is still standing, though it has a new name.

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Hollybush House

William McLachen owned this house, he was a goods guard on the railway, a quiet man who had the reputation of having two "speeds", dead slow and stop!

The house was subdivided and William's brother John lived there with his wife Ann and son Peter.

Similar in style to Southhouse, Hollybush, though, still survives quite close to its original condition and is back to a single dwelling house. 

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Hawthorn Cottage

 This was the home of Mrs. Main, a widow, no one in the group remembers her being anything but a widow dressed in black and from the occasional visits paid to have the tea leaves read, it seems the cottage only had two rooms.

Hawthorn looks much like it always must have looked, the house has been much extended at the back.

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Russet Cottage

Russet Cottage had four rooms; at one time they were all single ends occupied by different families, McDermott, Sharps (then Carsons) Robertson to came to mind.

At this time the Carson's had the house, the cottage still remains much as it was in its general appearance.

The house had outside toilets.

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Toravon House

 Major Salveson owned Toravon, he retired here after the first World War.  He was born at Polmont House.  Educated at Blairlodge School (now Polmont Young Offenders Institution), served with the Royal Engineers in South Africa and afterwards in India.

He was the first man in the village to own a motorcar (registration No's M S 1 & M S 2), many in the group remember how he would only drive along to the shop at the corner of the High Road, turn around and go back to Toravon again, he did have a chauffeur (Mark Chun) to do the driving though.

In the winter when the children were sledging down the hill (where Cairneymount Avenue is now built) he would come along with oranges, apples and sandwiches for them.

Toravon house has long gone; demolished after a fire ruined the interior and the roof, a new Toravon has been built (not on the site of the original).  A new scheme of houses is now built in Toravon Woods (which at one time was laid out in paths for walking round with ornamental ponds and bridges).

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Toravon Farm

As yet I really don't know how much land Toravon had, but there was a substantial Farmhouse and related buildings there.

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A half cottage; James Thom the District Councillor for Muiravonside East lived in Janefield with his wife, Anne along with children Ginty and Nancy

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Mrs. Turner lived in Ochiltree, a half cottage originally called Carden.

Again this cottage still stands, not much altered from its original appearance.

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Blenheim was the home of John Donaldson, his wife Jeannie and son John.

Luckily the High Road has escaped the wholesale demolition of the centre of the village, the houses have changed, but most of the alterations have been kept to the back and it remains much as it must have when it was first built.
Leaving the High Road and turning down the hill on to the Main Road through the village, the first house we reach is:

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Tam Cunningham with his daughter Madge and John Wilson lived next to each other in this semi-detached cottage; they were small one storey, room and kitchens.

There is also a two-storey block called South Brae.

Thomas Nimmo lived in the bottom half; Thomas kept a parrot, which was quite a talker but could also bite the unwary visitor.

Upstairs lived John Chisolm, his wife and family, John was the son of Colin Chisolm, the village blacksmith, and a blacksmith himself along with his father in the village smiddy.  He was also the agent for B.S.A. bicycles for which you paid 2/6d down and 1/- a week, the bikes cost £2 10/-.

The upstairs house was accessed by a stair at the back, both houses were three apartments with sculleries and the upstairs house at least seemed to have quite small rooms for the size of the house. 

All of South Brae has remained till to day although much modernized.  Leaving behind South Brae we have to walk a little way down the narrow dyke lined road to the area roughly opposite the bus stance (about a hundred yards or so on) the next row of houses are called;

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Anderson's Buildings

Owner, M Anderson.

 First tenant in this Andreson's Buildings the row of three room and kitchens and one single end opposite the smiddy, was Janet Hunter who lived here with her brother Wull (many of the group remembered  "Black Jen" sitting on her steps, always with a pipe firmly clenched in her teeth), who had a talent for making "Ox-tail Potted Hough".

 Henry Leigh and his wife and family were next in the row.

 John and Lizzie Muirhead and children, Jessie, Rab, Tam, John, and James lived here in the single end; it was Rab who along with John Chisolm started the Maddiston Cycling Club or M.C.C for short! The premises were in a small hut by the smiddy.

 John and Emilia Clarke's Fish and Chip shop was on the corner of the Main Street and the Close.  Emilia was Italian and had that rather attractive Scots/Italian accent, John Clarke had a motorbike and sidecar on which he and his wife could often be seen round the village and on Sundays they invariably went to Carriber Glen.  Alec Hunter used to go round the villages with a motorbike and sidecar selling ice cream he got from Clarke's shop.

 Some houses had gas, some used paraffin lamps for lighting, cooking was done on a range in the kitchen and all had outside toilets and washhouses.

Turning right, down ‘The Close’ the next house was not actually part of the row but a completely separate four-roomed cottage:

The Johnstone family lived here, Peter, Elizabeth and nieces Margaret and Jean.  Both girls became teachers then Jean entered the Ministry and Margaret became a Matron in Bellsdyke Hospital. 

This house also had an outside toilet and washhouse.

 These buildings have all gone now, the room and kitchens were demolished and Mr. Macallister (Archie) built a garage on the site, Johnstone’s cottage became Bob Jamiesons grocery shop.

The next house was almost opposite Johnstones cottage:

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The Iron (or "TIN") house

This building was built of metal sheeting; hence it's name and was lived in by Mr. Toye.

The second house in the tin hoose was empty at this time.

The Tin Hoose consisted of two rooms and kitchens with ranges and sinks in the kitchen, it became the Old Folks Hall after the Welfare Hall was sold to Smiths. 


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Cottage, The Close

Mrs. Ferguson’s (Bonnie Annie) ran a wee shop down here in the close; it was a general grocer but had none of the trimmings of the proper shops (not even a sign outside to say it was a shop.)

Bert and Adam her twin sons lived here too. 

 The cottage was one of the elder ones in the village and had much in common with such buildings as Quarrellhead, Manualrigg and the Red Raw.

Bob Jamieson had his shop here till it burnt down and he then moved over to Andersons Buildings (Johnstone’s cottage).

 The School was down the Close at one time but we don't know exactly where and a lot of the buildings here were gone by the 30's.

One of the many characters that came round Maddiston and Rumford was Tam Heugh (Tam came from Linlithgow and must have walked some considerable distance in his time as he was well known in Bo'ness as well).  Tam travelled the world with his gammy fit, ancient bunnet and battered bugle collecting jeeely jars pushing a pram with just the metal wheels as the rubber had long worn away bedecked with burlers and parasols (a burler was what the boys got the girls got the parasols).  Tam didn't seem to have any overheads, his burlers and parasols were made with wallpaper out of old sample books (nowadays the burlers are called windmills and are made from brightly coloured plastic and still sold at fairs and gala days along with flags and balloons) the sticks were made from fish or fruit boxes. 

Someone also came round the villages with a pedal operated knife sharpener, but who he was or where he came from no one seems to remember.

Among the people travelling round the area there was those whose life was given over to entertaining the public like the Hairy Man (who seemed to 'entertain' by just being hairy!), various singers and dancers and a troupe of acrobats (a mother, father and daughter) who travelled in a horse drawn gypsy caravan and did, among other things, a high wire act.  The name locally for this sort of act seems to have been the 'Penny Geggie' (although in Maddiston this name seems to have been transferred to the local cinema (in Brightons), or at least a show there).

The Rag and Bone man was Macalpine who came from Slamannan and gave cups, saucers, pegs and balloons etc in exchange for rags and scrap.

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Cottage, The Close

 Miss Cunningham and her brother William live here.

Turning back along the Main Road opposite the Co-op this whole long block belonged to the Salvation Army

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Salferall Cottages

 Mr Topin had a small drapers shop on the bottom level while the Salvation Army officer (at this time Mr. Dalzell) lived above, but he didn't seem to be there for long and very few of the group can even remember him.  This shop became the Post Office until the present one was built at the bottom of the garden of Viewfield Cottage (run at first by Bella Hastie then Charlie and Barbara Macmillan).

Most of this building (Salferall is a contraction of "Salvation for all") was taken up by the Salvation Army Hall

  Click here for the Salvation Army page

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Mafeking Place

 Owner, Helen Hunter.


 Mr.  & Mrs.  Angus and daughters May and Beatrice lived in this first house of a block of three semi-detached cottages.

John was a miner at Redding Colliery and was a keen canary breeder.

 James Roughhead, Patternmaker, lived in the middle house.

 David Angus (son of John, above) and his wife, Elsie Fyfe, with their children, Ian and William lived in the last house in the row.  David was a Clerk at Redding Colliery and like his father was a canary breeder, Dasvid was also an agent for Pearl Assurance. 

 These three cottages were room, kitchen and sculleries with outside toilets and washhouses.

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Mafeking Cottage

Hunters shop was in an extension built on the end of Mafeking Cottage , this was another of the shops that seemed to sell everything.  Jenny and Jemmima Hunter ran the shop, Mr. & Mrs. Hunter  built this row at the time in the Boer war and Mrs Hunter deemed this a suitable name for the row in celebration of the relief of Mafeking.

John Hunter and his wife Helen lived here, all the men in the family were bus drivers, Mr Hunter has a small business of his own at one time but he was either forced off the road to increased competition, or he was bought out by one of the larger companies emerging at this time.

Mafeking was also the call house for Dr. Robertson (this entailed leaving messages here for the Doctor to pick up when he came into the village).

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Catherine Cottage

The other half of Mafeking, lived in by Mr. Sharp. 

On the corner of the Main Road and The Coal Road (Vellore Road) was Rosemount, owned by Donald Forsyth from California:

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North Rosemount Villa

Owner Donald Forsyth, California 


 John Myles, Miner.  Wife, Joanne.  Children, Joanne, Grace, Mary and Phamie.

 George Dick, Miner.  Wife, Jenny.  Children, Wullie, Lizzie, Chrissie and Joanne. 

 Thomas Wilson, Dye Worker.  Wife.  Children, Peter and Alec.

 Anne Forbes, Widow.

 Downstairs in North Rosemount consisted of two room and kitchens (with sculleries), both had front and back doors, outside toilets and washhouses.

An internal stone stairway lead to two houses upstairs comprising two rooms, kitchen and scullery, once again with outside toilets and wash houses.

Paraffin lamps lighted the houses until electricity was brought in; cooking was done on a range in the living room.

The range could be very elaborate with lots of brightwork (brightwork was polished steel) and brass and took a full morning to clean (usually a Friday) with "ZEBO" black lead and a burnisher, emery paper or just ashes and water mixed together, for the brightwork.

On the mantlepiece lay a great array of brass ornaments, boots, candlesticks, tea caddy, biscuit barrel and of course the wally dugs, just under the mantlepiece there was a brass rod (or a length of string) to hang the pit claes from for drying or just to hang a dish towel from. 
The next building sat up a lane behind North Rosemount and could be got to from the close as well. 

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South Rosemount Villa

Owner Donald Forsyth, California.


 George Robertson, Miner.  Wife, Anne.  Children, Mima, George, James, Andy, Annie, Bobby and Gordon.

 James Forsyth, Dock Labourer.  Wife, Annie Lees (Mitchell). 

 Children, Nancy, James and Donald Forsyth. 

James was a checker at Grangemouth Docks and died in an accident there.

 Peter Lees, Retired.  Wife.  Children, Peter, Nancy and Charles.

Originally came from Standrigg.

 John Findlay, Dye Worker.  Wife, Martha.  Children, John and Martha.

The two upstairs houses in South Rosemount were accessed by a stone stairway on each gable end of the building, each were room and kitchens.

 Downstairs consisted of three houses, to the south was one room and kitchen with back and front doors and to the north of the building were two single ends, one on the east and one on the west (back to back).

 The toilets and washhouses were those for North Rosemount, the washhouse was each tenants for a day and washing took all day from early morning to late on.  A1 washing powder and a lot of hard backbreaking graft with a washboard, lighting was by paraffin lamps and cooking was done on a range in the living room (washing day was soup day as there was just not enough time for the housewife to prepare anything else).

 All the houses from No. 12 to No.21 were demolished to make way for the new road in the 1960’s, but strangely the new road never encroached upon either of the two Rosemount Blocks.

Our journey continues, turning right, down The Coal Road (or Vellore Road)

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Smith's Garage

Smiths first garage was corrugated steel sheeting structure, built over the entrance to the "Haugh" and was only big enough to hold one lorry but it was later expanded to hold two, it’s hard to believe that the whole Smith empire started here when James and Alexander persuaded their father to enter coal haulage and purchased a second hand lorry. Father and sons worked the lorry continuously, in shifts, until they were able to purchase another two used vehicles. Soon a contract was won with a foundry in Falkirk to deliver gas cookers to Aberdeen and back loads of fish were obtained from the local markets for delivery to Glasgow, and James Smith (junior) was soon considering the possibility of trunk services.

 For the Smith page click here

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The "Haugh"

The area  of ground known as "The Haugh" was part of the property owned by Adrian Brown of Vellore (Part of Parkhall farm). It was rented by James Sharp who has a smallholding here, later it became Norman Crawfords Piggery, Norman also erected large huts for egg production.

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Templars Hall

Think of the Brethern in Maddiston and one name springs to mind, James Black.  Jimmy, who hailed from Airdrie, came to Maddiston to work at Manualrigg Coillery as an office boy then became a miner there until its closure in the nineteen twenties, he then became the Absentee Officer for Muiravonside School Board.

Jimmy preached the gospel for so many years in the hall down the Coal Road that the hall became known as "Jimmy Blacks' Hall"; Jimmy was also a tireless worker on behalf of Polmont Borstal and received the British Empire Medal for his services to that place.

Davie Anderson was the Sunday school superintendent.

Meetings were also held throughout the villages, many remember the men in black suits, bowler hats and umbrellas  (Gods work won't wait for the sun to shine).

Variously known as the Rechabites Hall, or the Church Hall; among other functions held here were the Child Welfare Clinic, the Buroo, Film and Magic Lantern shows (first Tuesday of the month, cost 1d), dances,the Maddiston Players used it as a theatre, in fact it held the position of Village Hall. 


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Burwood Cottage

Owner, Isabella Paterson or Wilson.


 Robert Robertson, Colliery Fireman.  Wife, Elizabeth Wilson.  Children, Jimmy, Elizabeth and Isabel.

 On entering Burwood there was a lobby with doors leading to each of the three rooms, one on each wing of the house and a small room in the centre at the rear.

 Like many of the cottages there was once a seperate outside staircase leading to another dwelling, the Inglis family lived here.

The cottage still stands to day and outwardly at least still looks much as it always has, the three-room configuration still remains, as all the modernization has been kept to the rear of the building.

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Gladstone Cottage

Owners Partick and Anthony Hainey, Miners, Pond View Cottage Rumford. 

The Tenants in Gladstone were;

John Inglis, his wife Bessie and children, Bessie, Cathy and Ruby were the occupants of the first end of the cottage. Jock was a labourer. It was Jock who always gave the Bowling Green its first cut of the year (with a scythe.)

James Sharp, Wife - children, Etta, Ella, Jessie, Jock, Robert, Billy, Tom and Jim.

Mr. Sharp was a bit of a card and always a sharp dresser.

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Galloway's Building

 Owner,Jane Galloway, Ochilview, Maddiston.

 Galloway's Buildings Tenants were;

Mr. and Mrs. Crawford and family, Peter, Norma and Cathy.  Peter was a quiet man who worked at the Pithead at Craigend before its closure.

 Mr. and Mrs. Hart and family.  John was an engineer.

 John Wilson, Wife, Maggie.  Children, Wullie and Jock.  John was a fireman at Bridgeness Colliery.

He was a great motorbike man and had a Sunbeam with a sidecar.

At the back of the house he had a Gazebo, which came originally from Haining (Parkhall) House.

John kept hens in the area behind Chrisella Terrace.

The houses were room and kitchens; they had gas and running water with outside toilets and washhouses.

 Now called Smith Villa, Galloways Buildings has changed from two up two down to one up and one down.

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Toravon Lodge

Owner Major Salveson, Toravon House.

 The lodge was the gardener’s house, at this time the gardener was called Smith, he lived here with his wife and two children, Jean and Jim.

 The house had two front rooms a sitting room and kitchen and an inside toilet.

 The house had to be demolished as it was severely affected by dry rot; a new house was built to replace it almost on the same place in which the original one stood. 

Down the "Coal Road",just past the turn into (and on the same side of the road as) Parkhall Farm sat a small row (two sets of cottages with a pend separating them) of whitewashed cottages with pantiled roofs:

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Burnside or "The Red Raw"

Owner, William Murray, Market Gardener.

 These houses were room and kitchens with no running water or gas or any other facilities and at this time housed workers for Wullie Murrays market garden.  (No trace remains of the Red Raw now to show that there were ever houses here).


Patrick Bradley, his wife and family, Nan and Roderick, occupied the first cottage. 

Patrick was a market gardener.

 Thomas Moverly, Market Gardener.  Wife, Agnes.  Children, Lindsay and Tom.  Lindsay told of how his father came here to prepare the house for his family’s arrival, by train to Bowhouse junction then by horse and cart to Maddiston.  He had the place scrubbed from top to bottom (the wooden slats of the beds as well) by the time they arrived.

 Agnes Grindlay, Spinster

 Arthur Robbins, Market Gardener, his wife and family, Masie, Ina, Isa, Arthur, Morris and Edith.

 Wullie Murrays market garden was the next stop on our way round the village, the market garden was started by the present (1937) owners father who bought some land and the greenhouses from Parkhall Estate

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Market Garden

 Lindsay Moverly, whose father was the Nursery Foreman from the 1920's until the late fifties described the Nursery :


"The main business was tomato growing dutch bulbs, strawberries and cauliflowers.

The worlds top flower show held annually at Southport was the main venue for Mr.  Murrays' attempt to keep the coveted Rose Bowl for the best collection of tomatoes.  Requiring to be won three years in succession, it took nine years for him to realize his dream.  This collection has never been seen since to my knowledge.

Bulbs were brought from Holland and sold in bowls supplied by the pottery in Bo'ness (I think it was called McNees).

Strawberries were grown in the first field in Vellore Road, and any rascal caught stealing them was usually escorted to the packing shed where, under the watchful eye of two bulldogs under the bench, Mr.  Murray dished out a large spoonful of Castor Oil from a large carboy kept for this purpose.  They never seemed to come back again!

I cannot recall my father ever having a holiday in the summer, except for the weeks he visited Southport to show his tomatoes but he had a great rapport with his boss and a great respect for him."


Around the same time Jenny Calaghan worked here, she remembers;


"I worked for the Falkirk Laundry until I was 16 then I was paid off as National Insurance had to be paid after that age.

I started work for Wullie Murray when I was aged 17; we started at six in the morning, had from eight till nine for breakfast then from one till two for dinner.

I was the only girl to work there for about five years then Jessie Muirhead started.

Most of the heavy work was done by the men, Mr.Murray used his horse for ploughing until it died, then a local farmer did it with a tractor.

We grew all the soft fruits, strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants etc, flowers, bedding plants and bulbs.

The season started when the greenhouses (twelve of them) were steam sterilized and the seeds were sown.  It continued with pricking out then hardening off in the cold frames.

 Watering the tomatoes was a full time job but we enjoyed ourselves when we could (when Mr.  Murray was away) by practicing our dancing up and down the aisles between the tomatoes.

When the tomatoes were finished we turned to chrysanths and we were busy every morning loading the lorry taking cabbages and cauliflowers to the market in Glasgow."

Mr.  Murray also had a stall at the "hairy berry fair" at Wallacestone, which was a feeing fair held on the first Saturday in August (now only a shadow of its former self as all that is left is the Free colliers walk).

The fair was the highlight of the summer with "Shoogy Boats" and stalls selling all kinds of things (including gooseberries of course, the hairy berry).

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Parkhall Farm

Our next port of call Parkhall Farm which belonged to the Browns of Vellore at this time (Thomas Livingstone-Learmonth sold Parkhall estate in 1921 to Hugh Brown of Holmhead, Airdrie)

David Donald was the greive at Parkhall from 1937 to 1949 he remembers that;

"Parkhall farm consisted of 210 acres, mostly in grazing for 85 head of Aberdeen Angus, 24 Highland Cattle and 200 Suffolk sheep.

There was one (and at times two) ploughmen, one cattleman, an orraman and the greive working the farm, seasonal workers were taken on from the surrounding area as and when was necessary, at harvest time or turnip (neep) thinning or shawing. 

The permanent workers were hired at the feeing fairs at Falkirk on the 28th of May and the 28th of November, usually only for six months, they earned between Thirty eight shillings and Two pounds a week plus a tied cottage. 

The season began in the month of February with the ploughing, work for the ploughman began at six in the morning when he fed then tackled the horses. 

Ploughing began at seven with an hours break for dinner, but that included looking to the needs of the horses before even considering his own.

After ploughing the ground was harrowed and rolled before the seed could be sown.

All the wheat grown was sold, three-quarters of the barley grown was sold but all the turnips were kept on the farm as feed for the animals.


The hay was cut by a horse drawn mower and after a day or two of good weather it was turned, it was then lifted into tramp ricks then after another day or two of good weather they were lifted into the stack yard and made into stacks.


Before the horse and binder could be brought into the field it had to be cut round with a scythe.  The crop was stooked and left for about two weeks before being lifted into the stack yard and made into stacks, which were thatched to shed the rain. 


The mill would come for about a week, it was hired from Rheinds of Stirling and came towed behind a traction engine with a caravan behind that for the operators.  The mill needed about sixteen to seventeen hands to work it; it was driven by the traction engine.  The corn was fed into the top and the grain came out of the bottom, the grain was loaded into one and a half to two hundredweight bags ready to be taken away.  The separated straw was used as bedding and feeding.

Before the end of the year the folds, reids or cattlesheds were cleaned out, the contents spread on the fields and the cattle were bedded down for the winter. Calving and lambing started around the beginning or February and lasted till the end of March; it was a time to be ready to jump at any time of the day or night to attend to the animals. If a Mare was having a foal it was much harder on the person looking after her (usually the greive) as there was no warning and that person had to be with her almost constantly."

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Ploughman's Houses, Parkhall Farm

Owner, Adrian Brown Vellore

The ploughmen at this time were Mr.  Moffat and Mr.  Wilson.   The houses were room and kitchens, the remains of which can still be seen near the farm steading.

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Haining House formerly Parkhall House

Parkhall House, now called Haining House, luckily the house has survived where many like it have disappeared. 

John Livingstone of Parkhall

Parkhall separated from Haining in 1647 when John Livingstone, the younger son of John Livingstone of Haining, obtained a feu charter of the lands of Nicoltoun, Weitcheit, Hilsyde, Gilmeadowland and Pairthall, amounting to the 30 shilling lands of the £10 lands of Haining.

Alexander Livingstone of Parkhall

Alexander his son added the lands of Whiterigg, which he bought from George Livingstone of that place.  Alexander was a Burgess of Edinburgh and held an Ensigns commission in the Stirlingshire Militia.

One of Alexanders daughters married Richard Burn of Clarkston (Polmont) and when her husband died that estate passed into the hands of the (Parkhall) Livingstone family.

Alexander Mitchell Livingstone

Another daughter married Alexander Mitchell of Craigend and all the estates were settled on their son and after her father’s death around 1720 she and her husband became tenants of Parkhall as guardians of their eldest son Alexander.  The lands of Wester and Northern room of Maddiston (Craigend) came with them, Alexander succeeded to the estates on condition he changed his name to Livingstone.

William Livingstone (alias Mitchell)

succeeded his brother and he obtained a charter for the lands of Maddiston and Manualrigg. 

William was succeeded in turn by his younger brother.

John Livingstone,

he held some office with the Forth and Clyde Navigation Company.  By his wife Antonia Calder he had five sons and seven daughters.  He died at his house of Clarkston in 1786.

Thomas Livingstone

Thomas was over six feet tall and said to have been the most handsome man in Stirlingshire, he died while otter hunting on the Avon near Clarkston

Alexander Livingstone Learmonth

His nephew succeeded Thomas, on condition he changed his name to Livingstone.

John Livingstone Learmonth

Alexanders son succeeded to the lands when he was six, they were heavily in debt and his creditors forced the sale of them.

Parkhall, Rowantreeyards, Nicoltoun, Whitshot and Maddiston were bought by John Learmonth, an uncle of the late Alexander.

John Livingston

(John never adopted the final "e"), he added to the estate, he died at Parkhall aged 64 and was succeeded by his sister Collville.

Collville Adam Livingston Learmonth

she married a retired Bombay merchant, George Adam who had to adopt the surnames of his wife.  George died in London in 1849 Collville survived him by seven years and the estate, eventually, passed to a brother of Collville in 1861 (There was confusion owing to the misplacing of Thomas Livingston Learmonths' will).

Thomas Livingstone Learmonth

(click for more information about his time in Australia) had married three times, he was a merchant in Edinburgh then a comptroller of customs at Grangemouth and later a merchant in Calcutta, subsequently he settled (as a merchant) in Hobart Town Tasmania, on his return to Scotland he entered into possession of Parkhall, where he died in 1869.

Thomas Livingstone Learmonth,

succeeded in 1869, he was married twice and had seven children. 

The Parkhall Convention for the deepening of spiritual life was held here every September during this time; it was attended by thousands of people from all over the country.

Mr Livingstone's interest in the spiritual welfare of the people was shown in his involvment with the Brightons United Free Church and the Salvation Army.

Thomas died in 1903.

The estate was sold in 1921 thereby ending 274 years of the Livingstones involvement with Parkhall and this family's last connection with any estate in Stirlingshire.

On down the road and over the Minister's Brig  takes you to Muiravonside Kirk .

Back up in the village, the first of the houses built by Stirling County Council are encountered, they are flats, four in a block, the first block which is of a slightly different design to the others, was the first to be built.  Chrissella was called after councillor George Simpsons two daughters, Chris and Ella; they were built in the 1920's,


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Chrisella Terrace

Owned by Stirling County Council 


Those who are interested in the names of all the tenants and their families can find them  HERE

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Magdalane Cottage

Owners, City Life Assurance.

 The Tenants in Magdalene Cottage were;

 Alexander Mills, Miner.  Wife.  Children, Betty, George and Andy.

 John Small, Labourer.  Wife.  Children, Betty.

Situated on the corner of the Main Road and the Coal Road (Vellore Road) is the first of many wooden buildings common to all parts of the country, most of which were built by the army during the First World War then sold off afterwards as surplus to requirements.

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Barbers Shop

 Hal (Henry) Todd built a wooden building where he ran his hairdressing establishment until the commencement of World War II when he joined the R.A.F.  The building was demolished in 1939 but another building replaced it (the present one) on Hals return from the war.

Turning off the Coal Road to the right on to the Main Street, this part of the village was owned by various members of the Todd family, in fact it was so tied up with the Todd family that it became jokingly known as " Toad Hall".

All but one of the cottages remain to day and although modernized they still look much like they were fifty years ago.


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Henry Todd, Hal was a salesman for "The Household" before he turned to hairdressing, he was a keen amateur dramatist being in the Falkirk Dramatic Society and the Maddiston Dramatic Society.  His three daughters followed him into hairdressing.

Hal and family occupied the upstairs flat in Fairvue.

 James Todd, his wife and children, Stewart and George lived here in half the downstairs house; James was an Electrician at Nobels explosive works in Redding.

 Thomas Todd, Colliery Manager, occupied the next half of downstairs.

 The two downstairs houses were room and kitchens with inside toilets with a bath but no running water, both had gas.

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Harmony Cottage

 George Todd, his wife (her own name was Grearson) and Margaret, Mary, and Elizabeth, their children lived in Harmony Cottage.

George's wife was a teacher at the local Primary School.

Harmony was a three apartment cottage with an inside toilet and bathroom and had electric lighting

 George Todd also had a sawmill and joinery business in the area behind Harmony, Rowantree, Burnside and Sheilagale, the company did a great deal of work for the Redding Cooperative Society and worked in the surrounding villages (and as far away as Airdrie, with no motor transport) as jobbing joiners.  The man stayed on the job till it was finished and if anything was needed the apprentice was sent back to Maddiston (with a hand cart if necessary) to get it.

Many local people served their time here as Joiners, French polishers, Cabinetmakers etc.

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Rowantree Cottage

 Robert and Elizabeth Lewis lived in  (see previous picture);  Robert was an engine driver with the railway and worked at Redding Goods Yard.

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Burnside Cottage

Peter Grant lived in Burnside he was a schoolteacher.

Burnside was undermined and the cottage broke its back and was demolished after the war.

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Mr. & Mrs Henry Todd, this bungalow  (see previous picture) was built by George Todd's workers and hasn't changed outwardly since it was built. The name Sheilagale is supposed to be an anagram of Galasheils, where Mrs. Todd came from.

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This part of the village is known as Manuelrigg and sits up on the hill next to the school apart from the main part of the village.

 Mr.  & Mrs.  Rae lived in Gowanlea, Tam was a carter, his son Tam worked in Maddiston store.  Tam was a fanatical Falkirk supporter.

 Andrew Pender, his wife and children, Kitty, Ross, Wullie, Jim and Andrew lived next door, Andrew was a colliery haulageman.

 The houses had two front rooms (room and kitchens?) although Mrs.  Rae referred to hers as a Middle End, they had no gas, cooking was done on a range and they had outside toilets.

 The two upstairs rooms were at one time a separate house as in Fairvue and Gladstone.

Gowanlea is still there to-day, still two houses and a new house is built in the garden.

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 William Pender and his wife lived in the first end of the cottage, William was a grocer.

 James Harper and his wife Margaret Robertson were in the other end, James was a clay miner.

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Parkend Cottages

The tenants in this row of room and kitchens were,

 William Wilson, his wife and three sons, David, James and Peter lived here.

 Janet Wilson and daughter Agnes lived next door.

 Mr.  and Mrs.  Thompson and their daughter Christina lived here.

 Mrs.  Wilson lived here; Margaret owned this row of cottages.

 The houses had sculleries at the back and outside toilets and washhouses.

 The houses still remain to day but they have been much altered while being modernized.


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Hillview Cottage

Mr.  & Mrs.  McKinley owned and lived in this cottage beside the school George was a colliery washerman; Hillview had two rooms and a scullery with running water, and outside toilets.

This cottage survived much of its modernization to remain much as it always has to the passer by.

The next building is the school, which was established here in 1897 and hasn't changed that much since 1911 when the full front had been built and the village got one of its most handsome buildings.

Now the ventilators have gone from the roof, the windows have lost their small panes and the porches are being replaced, but it still remains perhaps the most imposing building the village has.

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Maddiston School


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Smithy or City Hill

City Hill (the name seems to be a misspelling of the word "Sooty" which sounds like City in English) was demolished to make way for the Police Station (now itself replaced).There was a row of three cottages here, one of which had special significance to the weans of the village as Maggie Robertson had a sweetie shop here. By 1937 though the row had deteriorated that much it was almost in ruins. The Smiddy on the bottom (Rumford) end of the row, seems to have been replaced by the one up at the top of the village.

The road took a different route in 1937 and we are now walking up the hill where the new Blocks are, on our left, now of course Millbank Terrace.

The building on the right is:

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Woodside Terrace or Clayton's Buildings

 This double storey block belonged to John Clayton; there were three flats in the building.

The building had the date 1911 on the front of it, the date of its erection.

There seemed to have been three levels in Clayton's Buildings, the basement which had been turned into a flat (though it was very basic and had no sanitation whatsoever and was in reality just a basement), it was split in two with a room on one side and the washhouses on the other.

The next level (ground level) had two rooms, a kitchen and bathroom.

 The upstairs flat had an outside stair and was the same as the downstairs flat. 


 Peter Gordon a foundry worker, his wife Mary (Smith) and their children.

 Charles Small: a miner and his wife.

 One empty flat.

In the ground beside Claytons Buildings sat the body of a bus and an old railway carriage, the former used by Geordie Bennie from Wallacestone (who lived in a cottage down behind what is now Breezes bar) as a cobblers and the latter used by Johnny Clayton as a General Store selling the usual goods including clothes.

Clayton's wuids, have gone now, they stretched down the back of the house to the Level.  (Nicolton Road).

 Just down the road on the corner before St Catherines is the next wooden building:

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Fish and Chip Shop

Ben Shackleton built the hut, which was, rather over ambitiously, called (on the sign over the door) Ben Shackletons Fish and Chip Restaurant. The original building was burnt down (when it was owned by a Mr McMann), Archie Murdoch rebuilt it, Archie installed the first cigarette machine in Maddiston, it sold Red Label cigarettes and a card of matches for a penny (0.416p).  Archie sold the chip shop to Mrs Wilson who then sold it to Jean Turnbull, it didn't stay a fish and chip shop all its days and when it blew up (a Propane gas bottle exploded in a fire) in the 80's it was a General Grocer.

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St. Catherine

This was one of the few Council schemes in the village in the thirties, it contained 52 flats arranged four in a block.  It was built to accommodate people who were displaced when their homes were demolished as slums:  Blackbraes, Standrigg and Rumford Square 

 Those who are interested in finding out who lived in St.Catherine(s) - sometimes spelt with the "S" ay the end sometimes not)) can  go HERE and find a full list of the tenants.

 Another wooden building at the end of St Catherine’s was:

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Independant Labour Party premises

Pat Golden was the "I.L.P. “man" and when he wasn't orating from the orange box he carried around or holding meetings in the hall he was a shunter up at Craigend.

The hall was also used for weddings etc.

On the hill opposite Greenhithe Terrace roughly where the cottages are now, was:

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Mayfield Cottage

 Annie Nicol owned and lived in one end of Mayfield

Children, Agnes, Lizzie, Annie, Ned and Jock.

The Nicols had a contracting business run from a stable across the way, they had a horse, Rosie, the Rumford weans once painted stipes on it as they wanted a zebra!

One morning Lizzie went out to the stable and found the horse lying down and ran back shouting for Jock who said the horse was dead, "that's funny she said, it's never done that before".

When a hap went missing the police came looking and found one with the initials L.N.E.R. on Lizzie said "that's ours", the police asked her about the initials she said, " Lizzie Nicol East Rumford".

Jock, when doing a contract for Craigend pit, got stopped and when his cart was examined an anvil was found, when asked to explain, he said, " I must have shovelled it on with the coal".


 George Burrell, Motor Driver.  Wife: Macgregor.  Children: May, Nessie and Sheila.

George was a chauffeur with the Trench family who owned Parkhead.(The Health centre was located where Parkhead house was for a number of years before moving to St.  Margaret's.)

 Over the entrace to The Level (Nicolton Road) we reach a row of cottages called:

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South Craigs or Pender's Buildings

Owners, Samuel & Hugh Pender. 

This row of single ends had an addition built on it to serve as a shop, Mrs Shearer had the shop at Penders Buildings, it was another of the Jenny a' thing type of shop common everywhere at this time.

The shop was at one time a pig butchers not only did they sell in the shop but also they had a horse and cart going round the villages selling meat.

The house on the far end of the row hadn’t been long built, at this time. It was built during the depression by local masons who cut the stone in a local quarry and hauled it here themselves.

At one time this was a row of low thatched cottages then they were cleared to build the present row.


David Hardie, Blacksmith.

Campbell and Smiths house was separate from the row and over the burn; it was an ’ L’ shaped house with two rooms and a kitchen.

 John Campbell, Shoemaker.  Wife: Paterson.  Children: Bessie, Ellen and Georgina.

John was a quiet man.

Georgina was the first queen of Maddiston Gala Day.

 Alexander Smith: Checkweighman.  Wife: Kate Pender.  Children: Hughie, Cyril, Katie, Nancy, Peter and Mary.

Alexander was always the gentleman, if anyone was injured in the pit; it was he who took the cases to the tribunal.

 Situated down behind South Craigs Cottages was:

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Rumford Square

Rumford Square was a mixture of room and kitchens and single ends, 18 to 20 houses without any facilities, one stand pipe to serve all the houses and 6 communal outside toilets of the most basic type and a midden for rubbish and ashes which were cleared out by Jimmy Ramage every Sunday and the contents eventually spread on the fields.  The houses had fixed in beds, ranges for cooking and hot water and lighting was by paraffin lamps. 

They were built by Nimmo the mine owners to house their workers at Manualrigg Mine but by this time late in the thirties the houses were unoccupied and beginning to become derelict.

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Lathallan Cottage

Jimmy Ramage was a contractor who lived down the Level (Nicolton Road) in Lathallan Cottage

Jimmy had a contract with the council to clean out the middens around Rumford.  It was Jimmy who cut the Gala Day Park (though he had to borrow a horse for the job as he only had one).

Although a contractor, Jimmy had a small dairy farm (Lathallan Dairy) and it was old Mrs Ramage who walked round the area selling the produce.

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Haining North Lodge

No description of this house so far.

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St. Anthony's Roman Catholic Church

House, South Craigs

This cottage was occupied by The Carmichal family.

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South Craigs Farm

South Craigs Farm was a mixed farm, run by John Paterson:  Children: Thelma, Nettie, Cathy and John.

The steading was 'L' shaped with the back of the 'L' facing the chapel and had much in common with Rumford Terrace, Manualrigg and Quarrellhead with low whitewashed walls and a mixture of slate and pan tiled roofs.

Much of the land around the steading was used as a caravan site for many years, houses have been built here now.

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North Craigs

This area consisted of a double storey block (similar in style to Rosemount or Galloways building) where the nurse’s house is now and a row of houses on the other side of the road (but nearer the corner of the road where it turns down to Sunnyside), which was identical to the The Smiddy, South Craigs or Rumford Terrace with whitewashed walls and a pan tiled roofs.


 Mrs.Rae, N McAuley, Baird, McCafferty, Allison, Cowan, Burrell and Carmichal.

Now turning back along South Craigs Road, the next cottage was in the area that became the council yard; it was the same as the small cottages in North Craigs.

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Craigs Cottage (Ogston's)

John Ogstons cottage, John came from Aberdeen and worked on the railway.

The next cottage sat up a lane behind and sort of between Ogstons and the next one and like Ogstons cottage this one has now gone as well.

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Craigs Cottage (Swinton's)

Alexander Swinton, Labourer.  Son, Andrew.

Peter Baird built the next cottage around 1860-70, the sheer extravagance of the stonework is unequalled anywhere in the two villages and quite why this is so is not recorded (except for the fact the the Bairds were stonemasons)

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Craigs Cottage (Baird & Shearer)

Mrs. Shearer occupied one half of the Cottage; Mrs Baird occupied the other half of the cottage.

In South Craigs there were, Mrs Baird who had a newsagents business in the shed behind her house and Forrester who had a Newsagent/Tobacconist shop in the house though which house he/she occupied is a bit unclear.

 Both houses were room and kitchens.

The cottage still looks to day much as it was when it was first built but it is now one house.

 There was also an Undertaker in South Craigs by the name of Alec Baird though Wilson Marshall and Robert Calder from Standburn offered their services to the people of the surrounding villages as well.

John Donaldson, one of the workshop members who worked in the undertaking business remembered how when someone died you went to the undertaker who came and measured the body then went to make the coffin.  Next day the coffining or chesting was held when the body was placed in the coffin and a service was held then the coffin was placed in the best room.

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South Craigs (Riley, Clark & Shearer)

This cottage consisted of three room and kitchens, occupied by the Riley, Clark and Shearer families.

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Marne Cottage

Mr. and Mrs. Peter Baird lived in Marne Cottage, which had two front rooms and a kitchen, this house had gas. 

This is the house with the head carved on the side of it, which is in fact a representation of the house's owner and builder Peter Baird.


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Pender's Cottage, South Craigs

Owner Elizabeth Pender.


 Mr. and Mrs. Love lived in one half of this cottage.

 Mr. & Mrs. Fraser occupied the other half of the cottage, Alec was the "Penny Meter Man", and manager of the Gas Showroom in Redding.

They had two children, Molly and Robert.

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Cottage and Garage, South Craigs

Hugh and Elizabeth Pender lived in this cottage.  Hugh was a Contractor; the garage was situated behind this row of houses.

Many in the group remembered Penders busses, he ran services to Falkirk, Camelon Carron, Larbert and Grangemouth (they were taken over by Alexander in 1931) and the Generals red buses (they were taken over by Alexander in 1930).

The bus service here as in the surrounding area was run by Alexander, the fare to Falkirk was 6d (2.5p) return or 4d (1.664p) each way; the fare to Edinburgh (from Falkirk) was 2/6 (a half crown or 12.5p).

 There was also a row of three "single ends" attached to the above property.


 John Marshall, motor driver, John worked for Hugh.

 Thomas Higgins, Unemployed.  Wife, Jean.  Children,  Nellie. 

 Margaret McCafferty, Widow.  Children, Maggie, Maudie and Jean.

The cottage still stands, not much altered externally, but the three single ends have gone.

Turning right once again the next street of houses were miner’s rows built facing each other across the street, they belonged to Carron Company and the tenants mostly all worked for the above company.

On the opposite corner from where we are (the corner of Carron Terrace and South Craigs Road) was the Mission Hall, which at one time was agricultural workers houses called Rumford Terrace, built by the Livingstone Learmonths of Parkhall.  Apart from that building all the rest were purpose built by Carron Company.


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Carron Terrace

 Those interested in the tenants of Carron Terrace will find them  HERE

 The next part of Rumford, opposite Mayfield Cottage was and still is called Lorraine Place.

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Shop and House, Rumford

This shop was owned and run by Jessie Laing who lived next door to the shop, this shop was a big general grocer, later to become part of the Redding Co-operative chain.

Jessie organized bus trips every year for the local folk, usually ending up somewhere along the Fife coast.

Lorraine Place still stands and hasn’t really changed that much


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Greenhithe Terrace

The next row of bungalow style houses  were built by Stirling County Council in the 1920’s.


 8, James Dougall, Pipe Moulder.  Wife, Jean Craig.  Children, Jimmy, Robert and Mary.

 7, Stephen Curran, Miner.  Wife.  Children, Stevie and Cathy.

 6, Jessie Kay, Widow.  Children, Dick and George.

 5, John Robertson, Store-man.  Wife.  Children, Cecil, Mary and Nancy.

 4, Jane McCutcheon, Widow.  Children, Harry, Pat, Isa, James and May Ross, granddaughter.

 3, Samuel Hood, Dye Worker.  Wife, Margaret Thompson.  Children, Margaret.

 2, Patrick Golden, Shunter.  Wife.  Children, Anna, Pat.  Susie, John and Charlie.

 1, Robert Craig, Quarryman.  Wife.  Children, Robert, John, Walter, Katie, Margaret and Mary.

 We now have to retrace our steps a bit back round Carron Terrace as this next row of houses (an ‘L’ shaped row) was) situated opposite Bellvue roughly where Wallace Lea now is and along the back of where the garage is now (the area where Craigs Terrace and the garage opposite are now, was a smallholding in the thirties)


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Allison Place

These houses were owned by the Allison family from North Craigs, built by a Mr. Walker, and originally called Walkers Place.

The buildings were designed with one house at the front and one at the back, room and kitchens with inside toilets.

The houses were identical in appearance to Mountjoy and Comely Place, they had ranges in the kitchen, and lighting was by paraffin lamps. 

1a, Alexander Gray, Miner.  Wife, Anne McNee.  Children, Nancy, Belle, John and Anne.

Alexander was a bookie's runner.

 2a, James Allison, Miner.

 3a, John Fullerton, Dye Worker.  Wife, Nell Grant.  Children Wullie, Mary and Neil.

 4a, William Allison, Labourer.

 5a, Adam Allison, Dye Worker. 

 1b, John O'Donnell, Joiner.  Wife, Nellie Ferguson.  Children, Anthony.

 2b, Crawford Jack, Miner.  Wife, Allison.  Children, Peggy, Jean, Agnes, Robert, John and Lizzie.

 3b, Joseph Allison, Miner.

 4b, Thomas Gray, Miner.  Wife, Ann Allison.  Children, Agnes, Isa, Belle, Rose and Dan.

Tam (The Rabbit) was a handyman who used to do all sorts of jobs.

 4f, George Hainey, Miner.  Wife.  Children, Mag, Pat, George, Rena, Jimmy and Wullie.

 5b, William Young, Miner.  Wife.  Children, Gerry, Maria and Ann.

 5f, Grace Forrest, Widow.

 6b, Harriet Docherty, Widow.  Children, Tam, Jimmy, Sadie and Nellie.

 7b, Isabella McNee, Spinster.

 7f, Elizabeth Carmichal, Spinster.

 8b, Thomas Wilson, Chemical Worker.  Wife.  Children, Bessie, Masie and Robert.

"Tango Tam" was a great dancing man; he used to do the "Belgian Burl".

 Martha Allison had a chip shop roughly where (Cullens Bar/Beggs Lounge /Rumford Arms) is now.

 Allison Place has now gone and new houses are springing up all around this area now.


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Comely Park

This row was owned by an Edinburgh man, James Govan.

 Comely Park Tenants were;

 William Taylor, Moulder.

 Arthur Leaker, Loco Fireman.

 David Sheilds, Motor Driver.  David drove for Hugh Pender then drove charabangs for his own business in Laurieston.

 Thomas Forrester, Bricklayer.  Wife, Jack.  Children, Wullie, Gardener, Jean, Violet, Tam and James.

Tam was a singer with a concert party.

 Peter Savoy, Dye Worker.  Wife, Mary Toye.  Children, Nick, Jean, Jennifer and Jim.

 Robert McLennan, Motor Driver. 

 The houses were room and kitchens at this time and had inside toilets, the houses are still much as they were in the thirties externally, and much of the extension these houses have undergone has been kept at the rear of the buildings.


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Pond View Cottage

This cottage (opposite Comely Park) was owned and lived in by the Hainey family; it had two front rooms and a kitchen.  The cottage still remains though the (curling) pond in the name is long gone, as is the quoiting green which replaced it (the fact that it's called Pond View Cottage surely means it was built before Comely Park obscured the view to the pond?). 

The present chapel is now on the site of the pond, curling stones found while digging the foundations are displayed at the chapel door. 

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Mountjoy Cottages

  At the top of the Quarry Brae behind Chrichton Place, Mountjoy is now in Brightons but at this time this was thought of as being in Rumford. (Not sure about that statement !!)

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Chrichton Place

John Ogston owned Chrichton Place, a row of room, kitchen and sculleries.

Cooking was done on a range in the kitchen and there was gas lighting, they had inside toilets


 Emily Anne Frazer, Widow.  Mrs. Frazer ran the Newsagents here.

Mr. Frazer was a jeweller and watchmaker and many of the group remembered when this was a jewellers shop.

 Jean Frazer, Spinster.

 Mary Barker.

 The row still stands, not much changed externally but the houses have been extensively modernized inside.


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House, St. Anthony's

The Preist's House

 Rev. Thomas McCann was the priest at this time, he wasn't the most popular of priests but that could be explained by him taking over from Father McGarvie who was popular with everyone no matter what religion.

 We have now walked in a circle back to Allison Place, the next cottage sits nearly at the end of this road  - opposite Bellvue:

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Burnside Cottage

Burnside Cottage is now one house and has changed quite a bit (externally and internally) since the thirties

Elizabeth Sharp, the owner, lived in one side of this cottage.


 Robert Kerr, Blacksmith.


The next cottage, Haugh sits a little further up the road past Burnside:


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Haugh Cottage

David Hunter; a fireman at one of the local pits lived in one half of Haugh Cottage with his wife and children, David.  David (Snr.) owned this cottage.


 William McKinley, Dye Worker.  Wife.  Children, Nancy, George and Tom.

 The next cottage sat away up the end of the road leading from Bellvue and up to Greenwells Farm.

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Brickworks Cottage

The Kelly family lived in one side of this cottage; Mr. and Mrs. Gillespie lived in the other.

This was another of the older cottages in the area with low pan tiled roofs and whitewashed walls and would have been either but and bens like the smiddy house or just single ends.


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 Bellevue was built by Stirling County in the early twenties, a bungalow style house which fitted in nicely with the other houses in the area.

Those interested will find a list of the tenants HERE

It was at No.  1 Bellvue that the first public telephone was installed; just inside the front door (which was never locked) a blue sign on the wall advertised the fact that a telephone was here.  No slimline phones, no direct dialling, the phone was a heavy black bakalite thing with no dial, dialing was done by the operator, button A was pressed to get through, button B was pressed to get your money back.

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Greenwells Terrace

 This row belonged to Helen Hunter.

The tenants in Greenwells Terrace were;

William Murray, Miner.

 John Auld, Wife, Mary Clark.

There was a General Grocer here, which originally belonged to Jim Hunter then to Thomson then to Mary Auld who was responsible for the present shop built next to Greenwells Terrace.  As with many local shopkeepers Mr Auld was a miner who was injured in the pit and the compensation set him up in business.

 John Hunter, Motor Driver.  Wife.  James and Hendry.

 Patrick Kilbride, Insurance Man.  Wife.  Children, John.

 Thomas Burton, Miner.

 John Forrester, Quarryman.  Wife.  Children, Wullie, Jimmy, Gardener and Jessie.

 George Hunter, Motor Driver.  Wife.  Children, Jessie and Helen.

 Agnes Dick, Widow.

 Where the Hairdressers are now was once a Bicycle shop owned by people by the name of Walkinshaw.

At this time there was a bike of some sort (many bikes were made up from bits and pieces of other older ones) in almost every household.  The most popular was an upright 28-inch frame with rod brakes B.S.A., Rudge, Whitworth, Dawes makes which cost around £2. 10/-  (£2.50).  Although it has to be said that the occasional frame and two pram wheels (no brakes just a boot stuck between the wheel and the front forks) had been known to run around the villages steered no doubt by the less faint hearted local laddies.

 Mr Gibney had a Tailors business in the extension built on the end of the last house.

 One of the houses was described as having two rooms and a scullery with a toilet just outside the back door.

The houses have undergone much modernization, again most of it has been to the interiors and the outward appearance of the houses hasn't really altered that much.

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Chip Shop

There was another wooden building (which was yet another Fish and Chip shop) here between Greenwells Terrace and The Blocks; Andra Miller was the owner in the thirties, the chips were fried in big open cast iron pans built into a brick range.  Andra also sold Waltons Ice cream.

Now much altered and renamed Ailsa, Rainhill and Nicolton Courts these next houses were called after the famous Carron Company who owned them;

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Carronview Terrace "The Blocks"

"The Blocks" were built around 1910, there were forty room and kitchens arranged 16 in a block, and eight three room and kitchen houses in what became known as the "Old Blocks".

The " Old Blocks" had front and back doors (downstairs) the front door led into a lobby where pails, brushes and etc., could be kept, a door from here led into a bedroom with a window looking out onto the Main Road.  A door on the opposite wall led into the kitchen, it had two bed recesses a range with a press on both sides and gas lighting (a swan necked bracket above the fireplace). 

 A door from the kitchen led into a scullery, in the corner was a sink under the window and in the other corner the coal fired boiler sat. 

The W\C was off the scullery.

A double staircase at the back leading to a landing serving two houses accessed the upstairs houses.  The upstairs houses were of the same design except for the last block, which only had one bed recess in the kitchen, and there was a set of stairs to the attic rooms (when this last block was built it was meant to be for the white collar workers).

 A list of the tenants can be found HERE

The block No's 112 to 120 were knocked down in the early 1960's (61-62) when the blocks were renovated by Stirling County Council,  sadly this renovation went badly wrong for most of the houses and even after trying to upgrade the heating systems the houses stayed very difficult to heat properly.

Thirty years later the first block (No's 65 to 80) would go the same way during yet another renovation scheme, this time the old blocks were sold off by Falkirk District Council to a private developer thereby giving them enough money to renovate the new blocks ( the only houses that retained the name Millbank Terrace, the only reason for renaming The Blocks seems to have been the end of their association with Carron Company and the fact that when the were renovated a Labour administration was in power and decided to call them after the Labour party HQ - there weren't any Mills in the area that I know of anyway!!).

 The next cottage was up California Road:


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Dunellan, Rainhill

 Charles Forrester owned this cottage he was a labourer.  Nothing is known about this cottage or Mr Forrester.

This next row was roughly in the area occupied by Blackmount Terrace now:

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Carron Company owned the houses.

Rainhill consisted of a row of four cottages and in common with many of the houses on the border of the village they had no running water, electricity or gas.

They were built on the slope of the hill and a set of steps led down from the living rooms to the scullery with the coal cellar under the scullery. 

Toilets were of the outside "cludgy" type, which were emptied into pits dug at the bottom of the gardens.


 John McArthur, Engineman.

 Donald Cameron, Labourer.  Wife.  Children, Wullie, Greta and Peggy.

 James Clydesdale, Butcher.  Wife.  Jean McArthur.  Children, Tom and Margaret.

 Simon McArthur, Engineman.

 James Binnie, Miner.

 This next cottage sat at the end of the road coming up from the brickworks in the area known as Lammie's Wuids (Lambie's Woods)

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Cottage Lambies Woods

This cottage is listed along with Rainhill but was actually seperate from that block, being on the other side of the road (track) leading down to the old brickworks and Bellvue.


Archibald Lambie, miner. Wife - children John.

It was said that the Lambie family looked after the woods called after them (don't know if they actually owned them though.)

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Hirst Cottage

 We think Hirst cottage was empty from the thirties until it was knocked down (in a plan of Craigend Estate dated 1862 there are two Hirst farms, East and West, I think this is what's left of the steading of East Hirst).

Walking back down the High Road (California Road) to Manualrigg this block stood almost opposite the school on the corner, where Seaview is now:

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City Hill or Ebeneezer Place

City Hill was a two storey block comprising of six room and kitchens with outside toilets and washhouses.

Ebeneezer place has gone, the name has gone and there is a new block of houses here called Seaview.


 John Pender, Miner.  Wife, Jane Walker.  Children, John, Davie, Cathy and William.

John kept hens and sold eggs, their son John was killed in an accident on his bike going down the Salmon Inn Brae when his brakes failed.

 Robert Sneddon, Labourer.  Wife, Jean.  Children, Elsie and George.

 Alex Davie, Miner.  Wife, Lizzie Munro.  Children, Alex, Betty and Nan.

 James Liddle, Miner.  Wife, Isa Gow.  Grandfather, Wullie.

Jimmy "made contact with the beyond" by placing his hands on the table and rocking it to frighten the weans.

 James Robertson (Yankee Jimmy), Labourer.  Wife, Mary Reid. 

Children, Peter, Jimmy, Irene and May.

Jimmy played the pipes with Craigend Pipe Band; he was another "coamytee" (committee) person, when he was a laddie he immigrated to America (Pensylvania) with his parents, hence his nickname, he was also a founder member of the History Workshop.

 James Forsyth, Labourer.  Wife, Violet McBride.  Children, Hughie.

Eelan Pender had a sweetie shop in Ebeneezer Place which probably took over from the one Mrs Robertson had opposite here in City Hill, it was always open when the weans got out of the school, the shop was originally in the house but moved out to a hut later on.

 Situated behind where the new Police Station now stands was:

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Welfare Hall

Craigend Miners Welfare's clubhouse was opened by Mr. Pate OBE the manager of Carron Works in June 1925.

It had 12 acres of ground attached for sporting activities, which included a nine hole golf course, football pitches, bowling greens and tennis courts.

Situated in the middle of the village it was a substantial brick built building, which included a hall with accommodation for 250.  It cost £3700, of that £2000 was given by the Lanarkshire Miners Welfare Association, the rest was contributed by the miners themselves.

The welfare was lost to the village when Smiths bought it as office space, the committee asked the people to contribute towards its upkeep (a penny a week) but they refused and the committee went ahead with the sale.

 On the hill overlooking the village of Maddiston, where the Fire Brigade HQ is now was the row called:

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This was another of Carron Company's many properties in the area which would have in many cases, been inherited when they took over the collieries.

Manuelrigg was in an advanced state of decay at this time, indeed some of the houses were deemed uninhabitable.

Manuelrigg was at one time a farm steading and had many characteristics in common with the older agricultural buildings throughout Central Scotland, ie; rough whitewashed stone walls and a pantiled roof.


 1, Uninhabitable.

 2, James Rankine, Miner.  Wife, Mary Munro.  Children, Jock, Teenie, Wullie, Maggie, Mary, Nellie, Annie, Peter and Jim.

James only had one leg the other was a peg leg. 

One day he lay down on a field and kidded on he was shooting down a passing aeroplane with his crutch, he got the fright of his life when the aeroplane swooped down as if to shoot him!  

 3, Uninhabitable.

4, Uninhabitable. 

 5, James Scobbie, Labourer.  Wife Marion Smith.  Children, Mary, Tam, Jean, James, Peter and Agnes.

 Manuelrigg was one of the industrial areas of the village, being the site of a Colliery, a Quarry, Brickworks and a Haulage Contractor.

Manuelrigg Colliery closed in 1922 and great excitement was caused in the village by the demolition of the pit chimneys.

The quarry here (behind the Fire Brigade Headquarters) seems to have been started here around 1800 by the Livingstone Learmonths of Parkhall who owned this area.

The Brickworks started around 1880 by a Mr. Dick and used the material from the top of the quarry (ganister); in 1896 the boiler at the brickworks exploded killing two men. 

In 1897 the brick works became a limited company and had new machinery and Hoffman kilns installed.  

The Haulage Contractor was of course Smiths, still at this time a fledgling enterprise installed over in the Coal Road.

It was in 1946 that Smith began constructing their headquarters here, having just taken over two other haulage companies, Smith of Avonbridge and Keir of Camelon, and adding another eight vehicles to their fleet. The opening of the British Aluminium Company’s new rolling mills at Falkirk gave the company a great boost when they successfully tendered for the contract for the haulage of processed aluminium on a large scale, involving deliveries all over the country, several new and used vehicles were added to the fleet at this time.

By 1953 there was accommodation for 28 vehicles with a repair shop, traffic office, loading bays and storage space, the whole covering 15,000 square feet, and an adjoining two and a half-acre site had been acquired for further expansion. In the same year the company purchase the coach building firm of Campbell Bros. Whitburn and there they began building vehicle bodies to their own design. So much traffic was going to England in 1954 that it was decided to establish a branch depot in Lancashire, and premises were acquired adjoining an hotel at Bryn, near Wigan, this depot had room for 12 vehicles. Similar facilities were soon purchased in London, much of the goods handled were still for the British Aluminium Company, but a large volume of general traffic, return loads were collected from all parts of the South Coast for delivery to the Midlands and Scotland.

In June 1954, the business was converted to a limited liability company and was registered as:

J. & A. Smith of Maddiston Ltd, with a capital of 40,000 pounds. In October of the same year the old Welfare building was purchased and converted into an administration block with a large boardroom, waiting room, general office, wages department, typists’ pool room, managers office and telephone exchange. The office staff amounted to 18 at this time with an additional 10 employed in the traffic office, which was retained within the garage building, it was around this time that the maintenance shops were built, which allowed for complete servicing and overhaul of the vehicles at Maddiston. The fleet was comprised mainly of Leyland and A.E.C multi wheelers with some Albions, Bedfords and Thames, which were used for light traffic, both local and long-distance. Nightly trunk services were operated to the South, with general goods from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Falkirk. These were augmented by daily services to London and the Midlands and there was a regular run with contract vehicles from the Bauxite works at Fort William and Kinlochleven. Another substantial customer was the Alloa Glass Work Co. Ltd., whose work was taken over after the liquidation of London Scottish Transport. Smith’s acquired the London Scottish depot at Alloa with 30 to 40 of their vehicles.

 In 1937 the Coronation mine was sunk in this area by Mr Sharp, it was later owned by Tam Fergusson of Stirling Albion fame.


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"Sergeant's" House

This bungalow on the Main Street was owned by Stirling County.

The "Sergeant's House".which, although never its official name, was the name that stuck:

 Although this was a relatively modern house, with electricity, running water, bath etc., the biggest fault with it was the dampness.

The sergeant at this time was Alex Taylor; he lived here with his wife Jane and children, Jane, Jim and Isobel.

 The next row of cottages still stands to day; the front facing the road still looks much as it would have when they were built.

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Abercrombie Cottages

The Abercrombie family, from Redding, owned these houses.

Abercrombie Cottages were room and kitchens, with running water, toilets but with no baths and gas lighting.


 Janet Ogilvie, Widow.  Children, Agnes, Frank and Leonard.

 Archie Nicol, Bacon Curer.

 Davie Dodds, Joiner.  Wife Nancy Bryce.  Children, Peter.

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top John Robertson owned this cottage he was a coal merchant. 

Suvla Cottage consisted of two rooms at the front of the house and an extension on the back where the kitchen was.  Mrs Robertson was a teacher at the local school. 

There was running water a toilet but no bath, lighting and cooking was by gas.

John kept and trained jumping ponies in the ground behind the house.

As well as his horse and cart he had a lorry, he sold coal all around the area.

Situated on the road into Simpson Drive, William Birrell had a smallholding in this area known as Loganfield:

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 Owner Elizabeth Anderson, Bonnybridge.


 William Birrell, Farmer.

 Wullie kept the usual assortment of hens, ducks etc and sold the produce to the villagers; Oransay Avenue now occupies this site.


This street was originally called Anderson Drive but this was a mistake and it had to be renamed Simpson Drive (James Anderson was a Sheildhill Councillor, George Simpson was the councillor for Maddiston).

Stirling County Council built these houses in the twenties and thirties:

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Simpson Drive

Owners Stirling County Council 

Going in the front door, the door to the left was the coal cellar, the door to the right, the bathroom.  The next door to the right was the kitchen which had two sinks, one shallow and one deep with metal plates between for holding a wringer.  The taps were brass, the sinks enamelled with wooden draining board for covering them when they weren't in use.  A coal fired boiler provided hot water. 

The living room had a big black range where the cooking was done; there was a press on the right of it.  There was also electric lighting and the odd power point.

 A full list of the tenants of Simpson Drive can be found HERE

 Back round on to the Main Road this rather attractive cottage is called:

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Terra Cotta Cottage

 Agnes Haldane owned the most part of Terra Cotta which had three houses in it; Agnes was the widow of John Haldane the tailor, who used to work from a small wooden extension on the end of the cottage.

 Agnes' son John owned this single end on the other end of the building.

 Sadly the cottage has undergone renovation, which has hidden the very reason for the name, the Terra Cotta bricks it was built from.

 Sitting back from the road and surrounded by a very large garden this cottage is called:

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Viewfield Cottage

 Viewfield was owned by John and Christina Ferguson, who at this time (1937) had moved from Maddiston and lived in St.  Andrews.


 Upstairs in Viewfield Cottage lived; Matthew Easton, Insurance man.  Wife.  Children, Alec.

 The stairs to the upstairs house were on the south end of the house (facing the pub) a small wooden porch sat at the top of the stairs with a sink inside it (cold water only), the toilet was directly beneath this, under the stairs.

The door, to the right, led directly into the living room where there was a big range for cooking.  From the living room a lobby led to a small room and the bedroom beyond.

The washhouse was outside against the pub wall.

 In the downstairs house, Duncan McNiven, Blacksmith's Hammer-man.  Wife, Mary Sneddon.  Children, Mary and Lucy, grandchildren, Ian and Duncan.

The front door was in the centre of the house facing the Main Road, from there into a lobby a door on the left led to the biggest room and a door to the right at the end of the lobby led to a room slightly smaller than the one on the left.  The lobby was "T" shaped, to the left was the back bedroom, and to the right was the living room, a small room opened off the living room, hardly big enough to be called a bedroom, at the rear.  From the living room a door opened off into a scullery, with a pantry on the left, in here was the range (this range was free standing and had an iron lum) and a sink, a door led off to a closed in garden with a shed and greenhouse.  From the scullery another door led to the bathroom/toilet, the bath had no running water and was filled from the washhouse boiler, both houses were lit by gas.  The cottage was a victim of the 60's when it became earmarked as the site of the new Salvation Army Hall and the Old Folks hall.

Originally a Coaching Inn, this Inn was built around the turn of the century to replace a single storey thatched building which stood almost opposite this one, called “The Crown”:

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Maddiston Inn

 Maddiston Inn was the only public house in the village and some of the regulars were: Buller Irvine, Buff Stowe, Davie Russell, Geordie Dick, Paw Collie, Jimmy Rankine, Andra Boyd, Piper Murray, Monkey Watson, The Rajah and Mag Williams.

On entering the Inn there was a door to the left, leading to the public bar, which was only about six feet wide but ran the entire depth of the building.

The other door led to the snug or jug, which was a small room with a bole where one could buy a cairry oot.

The beer was Aitkens and the most popular drink was a pint and a wee dump, closing time was at 9pm.

There was two rings outside the door for tying up horses a not uncommon sight in the thirties and regularly used by the butcher on his round (in fact many folk knew when to go to the butcher, as after he'd been in the pub a wee while the measures got more generous).

This handsome building was built in 1889 when much of the centre of the village was rebuilt.

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Redding Co-operative Store

The Jack and Hunter families live in two flats above the shop; the head of both families were employed by the Cooperative society.

The Store was the biggest and most important shop in the village, there were two departments to the store, the Grocery Dept. and the Drapery Dept. The Grocery was managed by Harry Struthers, a very efficient man from Pannie (now the Whitesideloan area of Brightons). 

Easton McFarlane was the cashier and Cornelious (Corny) Bryce worked at the counter.

All the dry goods came in bulk and were weighed out into thick brown paper bags of all sizes.

Butter and cheese came in barrels and was unpacked in the back shop then brought through and measured out to the customer’s requirements.

If a customer wanted a ham end for soup their name was put on a list and when that name came up, that was the day they made soup.

Many of the old measures such as chappins pecks and fourpit were still in general usage in the thirties.

The first thing to notice on entering was the sawdust on the floor and the counters arranged all round in the shape of a horseshoe.  On the left was a row of benches where the customers waited until their turn came up under the wag at wa' clock. 

After the 'getting the messages' customers went to the cashiers office and paid on a white line (for 'tick') or a yellow line (for cash), either way the cashier gave the customer a 'flimsy' (a small yellow or white piece of paper) with the customers number and the amount spent on it.

The weans were sent to the Store for all manner of things and the School Board minute book is scattered with references to children being kept off school to be sent to the Store (especially during times of shortage) to wait in the queue (sometimes for a full morning) for whatever had come in.

A jeely jar could be exchanged at the Store for sweeties but most jeely jars were kept at home by mothers making their own jeeely or jam (a 1lb jar was worth a ha’penny (0.288p) a 2lb jar was worth one penny (0.416p).

Jean McFarlane and Mrs Gilroy ran the Drapery; here one could buy clothes for all the family’s needs, from head to toe and from the cradle to the grave.  (And the Co-op would see you were properly put in that grave too!)

Not only could clothes be bought but furniture, ornaments curtains and if they didn't have it in stock (as with some larger items) they'd order it for you.

There was a mutuality club, which allowed the customer to get goods and pay it up through the weeks.

The Store had to cater for all needs and if a miner needed a new pick or shovel it was the store that supplied them (shovels came in sizes one to twelve, 10 was the coalmans shovel 12 the carters), carbide for the lamps (pit ile before that) the lamps themselves, pit buits, tackety or sparable, pee-weeps (pit vests), moleskins, the list goes on and the Store supplied them all.

As well as the shops the Co-op had a fleet of vans (horse drawn and motor) going around the district selling direct to the public, Abe Addison was the Co-op baker (inasmuch as he drove the van that is) and Hughie Lumsden was the butcher.

The  'store' also supplied a service for the local radio listening fraternity, as it was here they brought their accumulators (this was a sort of telephone box shaped battery around 9 inches tall and 4 inches square) to be recharged.  (There was also a boy on a tricycle who came round the villages and picked up / delivered the accumulators, the company providing this service was based in Reddingmuirhead).

The Redding Cooperative Society was taken over by the Falkirk and District Society who operated the shop for a while then closed it down, the building struggled on as a snooker hall for a while but went steadily downhill and became a dangerous eyesore, sadly no use could be found for it and it was demolished in the 90's.


As well as the Co-op butcher and baker who came around in vans there was also Myles (Hughie Callaghan drove this one) and Dalgleish the butcher.

Smart the baker gave away Black and White Stamps to the customers (Spend 4d (1.664p) to get one stamp) who then saved them up much the same as petrol or cigarette coupons to-day.

Other carts going round the houses sold lemonade, Barrs, and Douglas from Kirkaldy (who was eventually taken over by Barrs).

A more locally produced and better drink also came round the doors too, soor dook, John Binnie (from Wallacestone) came round every Saturday in his Soor Dook cairt.  Many also remember Wuidy Tyler (although he did get the rather disparaging title Watery Wullie) coming round as well.


Croft Cottages ran from the Co-op to the Smiddy in the area now occupied by the shop:


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Croft Cottages

Croft Cottages was extensively subdivided with flats upstairs, downstairs, back and front.

One of the upstairs flats was described as having a living room and two bedrooms, it had gas lighting and cooking was done on a range in the living room.

Although there was a toilet indoors there was no bath.  It had an outside washhouse.

A description of one of the downstairs houses; It was a three apartment house (kitchen, parlour and bedroom), it had two fixed in beds in the kitchen and gas lighting.

The downstairs houses were room and kitchens, all had outside toilets.

James Bryce's house was described as being aligned the same way as the Smiddy (the front looking down on the back of the Smiddy and the Coach Road):

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James, Allan and John Bryce owned Whitevale.


 Bella Hastie, Widow. 

 James Bryce, Miner.  Wife, Mary Hendrie.  Children, Jean, Nettie and John.

A set of steps led to the main door at the far end of the building (farthest away from the Main Road).  This door led straight into the living room, access to the bedroom (on the left) and access to the other room (on the right) the parlour or best room, was from the living room. 

There was a small scullery off the living room to the rear and up a small step.  Cooking was done on a range in the living room and there was gas lighting.  The house also had a flush toilet.

Many in the group remember when Bella ran the local Post Office from her house.  As well as the usual services provided at the Post Office Bella's was also the call house for Dr Reid (who came from Standburn) this was the Dr's first port of call in the village to collect the names and addresses of those who he had to visit.

The Smiddy was situated over the burn from the bus stance on the Coach Road, the front of the house looking over to the bus stance:

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The Smiddy

The Smiddy was another one storey building, half of which was the smiddy and the other half was the dwelling house.

Colin Chisholm was the blacksmith and although his work was mainly agricultural, work repairing motorbikes was beginning to creep in as their popularity increased.

(Some of the motorbike makes remembered were; B.S.A., Ariel, Rudge, Matchless, Harley Davidson, Triumph, Sunbeam, Exelsier (Two Stroke), Royal Enfield, New Imperial, Coventry, Eagle, Levis, Velocet (Water Cooled) and A.J.S.).

The cost of shoeing a horse was 17/- (85p) in the summer and 18/- (90p) in the winter, the extra cost was for studs to keep the horse from slipping on the frozen ground.

A set of shoes hanging in the rafters was kept for each customer.

The smiddy was always a favorite place for the weans of the village and if a horse was there for shoeing the weans weren't far behind.

This was (at least) the second smiddy in the village, the other was situated across from Ebeneezer Place, or City Hill and indeed on early maps its name appears as Smiddy Hill.

The Smiddy House was a "but and ben", which means it had one good room and one room in general usage.  The "But" was a small single room with an earthen floor and a range for cooking, the "Ben" had a wooden floor the good chairs and the chiffonier would have been in here this room was kept good for special occasions such as weddings and funerals.

This area (95-97) had all but disappeared by the time the new road came through in the 60’s. 

This row of three cottages up the Coach Road past the Smiddy was empty in the thirties and most probably stayed that way until they fell down and were eventually cleared away.

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Owner James Jardine

 This row of three cottages was empty and eventually ended up as a quoiting rink and a general gambling den.

As the name suggests this next building sat at the top of a hill, the rising ground behind Simpson Drive.

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Knowhead, Craigend

 Owner Carron Company.

 This was a former farm steading like Manualrigg and like that building it was at the end of its useful life; there were three houses, only one of which was occupied.


 Henry McAuley, miner.  Wife, Chrissie.  Children, Harry, Hugh and Jim.

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Craigend Pit Managers House

Owner Carron Company

No description except it was a five apartment cottage

 Behind the Manager's house this little row seems to have been agricultural workers houses until Carron Company acquired them.


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North Craigend

Owner Carron Company.

 Another like Manualrigg and Knowehead and again about at the end of its useful life as housing.  Two of the five houses were empty.


 Robert Cochrane, Labourer.

 James Robertson, Miner.

 James Robertson, Miner.

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Craigend House

Owner Carron Company


 William Coventry, Miner.  Wife.  Children, John.

 John Small, Miner.  Wife Jenny McNiven.  Children, June.

 Robert Reynolds, Ploughman.  Wife.  Children, John and Ruby.

 James McNeil, Miner.

 John Coventry, Miner.

 Andrew Jenkins, Retired.

 Henry Gibson, Miner. 

 William Steele, Explosive Worker.

 Andrew Jenkins jnr., Miner.


Craigend Estate belonged to the Mitchell family, the family changed the name of the estate to Mitchell in 1752.  This family inherited Parkhall in the 1720's and the estates stayed together until 1820 when John Learmonth Livingstone's creditors forced the sale of all the estates.

Thomas Mitchell Livingstone one of Australia's early explorers was born at Craigend, the story of his career can be accessed here.

John’s uncle, William Learmonth Mackenzie, bought Craigend, almost certainly Mr.  Mackenzie realized the potential wealth "under his feet" and started mining here, and it certainly had begun by 1840.

Mining slowly encroached on the mansion house of Craigend and eventually must have led to the departure of the Mackenzies.

United Collieries were the next owners of Craigend and they in turn sold it to Carron Company and it was they who developed it into the massive operation it came to be.  In the thirties Craigend pit and mine were producing 1200 tons of coal a day until its closure in October 1935.

 Walking back down to Maddiston, the area just over the bridge was and still is used for the Bus stance.

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The Bus Stance


This area seems to have been the turning point for the busses for as long as busses came to Maddiston, from Hunter's busses to Pender's  busses (who started the Maddiston / Grangemouth service which ran for so many years with Alexander's then First Bus), The General, Alexanders's now First Bus.

The next area of the village lay along a track roughly where Forgie Crescent is now;


 Quarellhead consisted of six buildings along both sides of the track excluding the farm of the same name, one two storey building, two "But and Bens" and three single storey cottages.

A standpipe in the street provided water.

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Hoods Cottage

This was one of the cottages mentioned above, there was also a smallholding here of four and a half acres, Hood's Cotage was a very basic building, single storey rough stone walls and pan-tiled and for some reason there didn't seem to be any ceilings, the house was open to the rafters.

Hood's was the first cottage in this area, it was seperate and just a little in front of Quarrelhead Farmhouse, the front of both houses faced down the village.

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Quarrelhead farm

The majority of the buildings consisting this farm were of the style of the older farm steadings, pantiled and whitewashed sitting astride a track, but the Farm House itself was a fine two storey tiled house.

A stone above the fireplace bore the legend "Thomas Baird 1761".

In the 1930's Quarrellhead was owned by the Baird family (strangely enough nothing to do with the original family of Bairds who presumably built this place, they bought the farm in 1926), Alec the son of that family described it like this;


" We had fourteen acres then bought a field from Parkhall then another three and a half acres from Vellore. 

There was a byre for five kye who all knew their stalls (when one was sold and later bought back and brought home, it walked straight back into its original stall).  We had thirteen milk kye, two pigs, one hundred hens some ducks and a horse. 

I took over the milk round from my father when I was sixteen.  Mother was up and had the kye milked around six, the milk round began around eight, it went all round Maddiston and ended up in Rumford.

The milk cost 2d a pint and was carried on a cart in two eight gallon churns, the women could buy half pints, pints or more, they came out with cans to get them filled, I also sold eggs and butter on the round.

The steading was a continuation of the row of houses, the byre came first then the house, which had a set of double stairs at the front, the barn was next then there was a shed.  On the opposite side of the road was the cart shed and stable, another barn and finally another shed.

Ploughing was done by contract with another farmer but most of the land was dug with a spade by my mother who was the farmer, my father was a miner and bought the farm because he didn't want his son to follow him down the pits."

The land was worked till around 1951 when the ground was bought to build the Forgie Crescent scheme.

 This next house sat back from the Main Road in the area now occupied by the end of Forgie Crescent (or the electric houses as they're sometimes known

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 Cornelius Bryce owned Southbrae; Corny worked in the Co-op and eventually became the manager.  He lived here with his wife, Jane Sutherland and their children, John, Margaret and Annie.

The house had three rooms on each of its two floors; the living room had a big stone fireplace with a brass surround and a range where the cooking was done.  There was also a scullery with a flagstone floor and big double sinks. 

Our walk through the villages of Maddiston and Rumford finishes at Weirwood, the house was situated directly opposite the double storey block on South Brae:

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 Weirwood was owned by John Donaldson snr; retired Colliery Manager

Mr Donaldson and his wife, Anne Thomson, lived in Weirwood, he retired here in 1927 after a long career in the mining industry, which started at the age of 9 at Blackbraes Colliery where he was employed for 20 years (and where he returned later as under manager). 

The first half of the house had two rooms and an addition built on the back to serve as a kitchen.

Owner Mr Hogan

When the house became too big for the family living there it was split, the second house consisted of two rooms and a kitchen, the entrance being at the back into the kitchen, Matt Hogan took over the shop further up on South Brae (Mrs Donaldson’s) when Weirwood was demolished to make way for the new road.


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