Paul Bishop: Kirkintilloch during and after the last ice age: Thursday 1st Febuary 2018

The Last Ice Age was responsible for much of the landscape, landforms and soils we live on. As the ice ground its way from the highlands to the sea, it carved great valleys (glens) and moulded the land surface. The sea was more than 100 m lower and the Earth's crust was depressed by the great load of ice weighing it down. When the ice melted, the sea returned and the Earth's crust rose again as the weight of the ice disappeared. The land surface then started its long recovery from the deep blanketing by ice, as vegetation slowly returned to the thawing landscape. 

Prof. Paul Bishop is a geographer and has recently retired from the University of Glasgow. In this talk he explores the various lines of evidence around Kirkintilloch and nearby areas for the presence of this ancient massive ice sheet, and then shows how the landscape recovered from the deep freeze.

British ice coverage during the last ice age.
(Reproduced with the permission of the British Geological Survey
© NERC. All rights reserved.) 

Bardowie Loch - an example of a "kettle hole" created by glaciation. (© P. Bishop)
All evening meetings of the Society are at 7.30 pm in the Park Centre, 45 Kerr Street, Kirkintilloch, G66 1LF. 

Don Martin: Lacing the river - Glasgow Harbour during the 1960s: Thursday 11th January 2018

KDSA Secretary Don Martin has several thousand pictures from negatives he exposed during the 1960s. Because of the unaffordable cost many were not printed at the time and some have never been printed. Now the negatives are being scanned to form digital images for use in publications and PowerPoint presentations. The majority reflect the Beeching-era decline of branch railways and steam locomotives, but many other subjects are covered as well. At our 11th January meeting he will present a selection of 1960s images of shipping and ferries on the Clyde at Glasgow.

A Clyde ferry. (© D.Martin)

Shipping on the Clyde in the early 1960s. (© D.Martin)
All evening meetings of the Society are at 7.30 pm in the Park Centre, 45 Kerr Street, Kirkintilloch, G66 1LF. 

William B Black: The Argyll gunpowder industry: Thursday 7th December 2017

For almost a century the glens of Argyll were the scene of an industry that appeared to bely their peaceful atmosphere, the manufacture of gunpowder. Produced primarily to meet the needs of a burgeoning construction industry as 19th century industry expanded, its products were sent not only throughout the United Kingdom but far across the globe. Today silence has returned to these glens but remnants remain of a forgotten industry.

In the Society's December meeting, local historian and long term Antiquaries member, William (Bill) Black, will describe this relatively unknown part of Scotland's industrial history and highlight the artefacts and evidence that can be still be found in that locale.

The monument to the Millhouse Powder Works, Cowal Peninsula 
which was in operation between 1839 and 1921; it comprises 
a test mortar, the timekeeping bell and a plaque commemorating 
employees who died in accidents. (© W.B.Black)

Elizabeth Davidson OBE: Canvas, casts and charcoal: the restoration of the Mackintosh Building at Glasgow School of Art: Thursday 2nd November 2017

Three years ago the fire in the Macintosh Building of Glasgow School of Art was watched with horror in Scotland and around the world but a full restoration quickly commenced with completion scheduled for 2018. This project is being coordinated by Ms Elizabeth Davidson who will describe the work at the Society’s November meeting

Since graduating from Edinburgh College of Art with specialisation in Architectural Conservation, Elizabeth has been involved in most aspects of Scotland’s built heritage. As head of Heritage and Design at Glasgow City Council, she was responsible for maintaining the highest standards of historic building repair and maintenance whilst also encouraging the best and most inspirational designs in new development. Previous to this she led the Heritage Lottery funded Townscape Heritage programme to regenerate the Merchant City.

Earlier posts included that of director of Glasgow Building Preservation Trust, a charitable property developer rescuing and bringing back to life numerous historic buildings including St Andrew’s Square Church, the Tobacco Merchants House, Wellpark Enterprise Centre and the iconic blue ‘Tardis’ police boxes. Whilst at the Trust, she also pioneered Doors Open Day which introduced the UK’s first free mass architectural participation event, providing access to significant modern and historic buildings and to interiors which had rarely before been glimpsed.

In 2010 Elizabeth was rewarded an OBE for services to conservation and the built heritage in Scotland.

David Forsyth: Hidden histories - the material culture of Jacobitism: Thursday 5th October 2017

The Society begins its 2017-18 programme with a talk by David Forsyth of National Museums Scotland based on "Bonnie Prince Charlie and the Jacobites" - an exhibition currently running at the National Museum of Scotland. This is the largest exhibition on the Jacobite Stuarts for over 70 years. It tells the story of the Stuarts’ attempts to regain their lost thrones from the exile of King James VII & II in 1688, until the death in 1807 of Prince Henry Benedict, Cardinal York, younger brother of Prince Charles Edward Stuart. 
A resident of Kirkintilloch, David Forsyth is Principal Curator of Renaissance to Early Modern Collections in the Department of Scottish History and Archaeology at National Museums Scotland. He has curated a number of major exhibitions over his nearly twenty-one years with National Museums and has written widely on the juxtaposition of history and material culture, including contributing to and editing the book to accompany the Bonnie Prince Charlie exhibition and articles in History Scotland, as well as contributing to a number of broadcasts on related topics.

Charles Edward Stuart: "Bonnie Prince Charlie"

Doors Open: Saturday 9th September 2017

The Society contributed to this year's Doors Open programme in East Dunbartonshire on Saturday 9th September by its presence in the Park Centre in the morning and by organising a guided historical walk around what was Kirkintilloch Basin, now the Marina, in the afternoon.
In the Park Centre, two PowerPoint presentations showing historic photographs of the town and canal, and the Society's activities and programme were continuously projected; in addition, committee members - Rita Bennie, Ros McMeekin, David Graham and Ivan Ruddock - were present to provide information and answer questions.

Committee members 'manning' the Society's stand.
The presentations showing Society activities and historic photos.

In the afternoon, Don Martin, the Society's secretary, led a well supported walk from the Park Centre to the Marina where he described Kirkintilloch's industrial heritage including shipbuilding, iron founding and the role it played in the early days of railways as one terminus of the pioneering Monkland and Kirkintilloch system. 

The Society's secretary explaining the significance of  the Basin
Foundry, formerly located in what is now Kirkintilloch Marina.