Looking Back - Herald files

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Re: Looking Back - Herald files

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From the Archives of the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald published on November 19, 2008

100 YEARS AGO on November 24, 1908
AT the annual meeting of the Saltcoats and Ardrossan Royal Arch of Freemasons the following officers were appointed: - RMW WP Flinn; SM H Flinn; SWR Mack; JWJ Blain; Secretary, WM Gillies; Treasurer, DB Dewar.

LAST night the committee of Ardrossan Horticultural Society met in the Station Hotel to make a presentation to Mr David Bell, nurseryman, who retired from the post of treasurer. Major Marchie made the presentation and songs were sung by Messrs Brown, Watson, Adam, Bruce Wilson, McCall and Taig.

A LECTURE on An Evening With Tennyson was given on Tuesday in Ardrossan Town Hall by the Rev RM Adamson of St John's Church. Renderings of the poet's songs were given by Misses AE Cook. Macara and F Barr.

ARDEER Bowling Club held a smoker on Monday in the Bowl House when prizes were presented to the season's winners as follows:- Championship, A Duff, runner-up, Adam Miller. Ballantine Cup-1, A Wilson; 2, John Boyle; 3 R Kilpatrick. Doublehanded Medal -1 Adam Wilson Junior and Thomas Byron; 3, David Kelso, and William Reid.

AT the annual meeting of Dalry Curling Club the following were appointed office-bearers for the year. President, Mr Alex Willison; vice-president, Mr William Spier, secretary, R Thomson; treasurer, AG Wilson; Committee - Messrs G Wilson, JW Walker, John Guy, John Brown, George Kirkhope, Robert Marshall, Allister McDougall and Robert Malcolm.

50 YEARS AGO on November 21, 1958
MR William Green, a plant superintendent in Acids Department, Ardeer Factory, has retired after 43 years service to IC and its predecessors and in the staff canteen recently received presentations from the Company and his friends. The Company gift and scroll of service were presented to him by Mr Ralph Ashcroft, works man ager, who said that a retirement presentation was not one in which they normally rejoiced. It was however, an expression of esteem and gave friends and colleagues an opportunity to say goodbye. Mr James Brown made the presentation on behalf of friends and colleagues. He recalled that Mr Green had served in the Royal Army Pay Crops during and after the First World War, and described him as one who could speak authoritatively on acids manufacture."

AS considerable trouble is being experienced with the silting sand at the outlet of the storm water overflow sewer on the North Shore, Ardrossan - it requires almost daily attention to keep it clear-the sewer is to be extended seawards for 24 yards as to obtain a clear outlet. The estimated cost is £220.

ORGANISED by the British Legion, Poppy Day in Saltcoats realised the following: -Sale of Poppies, £125 8s 2d; magazines, £2 12s; wreaths, £27 1s; total, £165 1s 2d. This sum includes £5s 9s 110 the retiral collection at the morning service in South Beach Church.

THE Roads and Parks Committee of Ardrossan Town Council have considered the future use which might be made of Castle Hill Gardens and have agreed that, in the first instance, the Housing Committee be asked to indicate whether they considered the ground could be used for housing purposes.

TWENTY-one-year-old Michael Hughes had the surprise of his life recently when he came across a pup, a few days old lying among a pile of rubbish which he was shovelling into a furnace. His quick eye saved the pup from being buried alive, for all he saw moving was his tongue. Michael, who stays at 18 Kirkhall Drive, Ardrossan, works with the burgh cleansing department and his discovery was made on Wednesday afternoon of last week at the destructor near the gas works. The pup could quite easily have ended up in the furnace, for its coat was so dirty that it was almost unrecognisable. Michael picked up the animal and carried to a washhand basin in the destructor building. He washed it and fed it with a crushed aspirin tablet. Then he put it into a cardboard box lined with rags to keep it warm, and placed the box beside the furnace. When he finished work in the evening he took the pup home and because it was so young he fed it with milk from a babies bottle. Michael told the Herald that the puppy lay comfortably in the box beside the hearth and there to keep it company was his two-year-old collie bitch, Sheb.

25 YEARS AGO on November 25, 1983
ARDROSSAN children could have been contaminated by atomic waste in a horror nuclear blunder, An MP claims. George Foulkes, MP for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley, was called in by an Ardrossan mother whose daughter recently underwent a bone marrow operation in Glasgow's Yorkhill Sick Children's Hospital. During visits to the hospital the woman - who refused to be named-became aware of 22 youngsters from Ayrshire being treated for leukaemia and other cancer-related diseases... illnesses which can be related to radiation pollution.

She claims atomic waste may be responsible. Now Mr Foulkes is demanding answers from Scots Secretary George Younger on radioactivity levels on the Ayrshire coast area of waste discharges from Hunterston Power Station. He also wants to know of any contamination from the recent leak at Windscale- now called Sellafield - in Cumbria. Mr Foulkes told the Herald: "I think with the number of children involved, the proximity of Hunterston and the Sellafield leak, the coincidence of it being something is too great.

"Radiation levels are increasing very rapidly. I am trying to get the latest figures, but according to the 1981 figures, the radiation level in fish caught off the west of Scotland is 30 per cent up on the previous year." Mr Foulkes added that the Hunterston Station was operating at 83 per cent of its maximum permitted level of radiation discharge. "It certainly looks as if people are keeping quiet about this," he said. The mother who raised the alarm said: "I know leukaemia could be caused by other things, but I'm very alarmed that there could be a problem like this in a wee town like Ardrossan."

CHAMPION swimmer Gillian Bone from Saltcoats created a new record last Saturday at the Incas Speedo Championships in Stirling. Thirteen-year-old Gillian-who has become a regular record breaker - did a 100 metre backstroke event in 1m 09.8secs. The previous record was 1m 12 secs. She then scooped a silver medal in the 100 metre freestyle event. And on Saturday, at the Cadbury Championships in Grangemouth, she scored a personal best of 1m 09.3secs for the same type of event

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Re: Looking Back - Herald files

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From the Archives of the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald published on November 26, 2008

100 YEARS AGO on November 27, 1908
THE Irvine and District's Water Board's new central offices, adjoining the recently opened Parish Offices in the Byres, Kilwinning, were formally opened last night by Mr R. Blakely, Chairman of the Board.

SERGEANT Sourbetts, who has been on recruiting business in this neighbourhood for some time, has been struck by the large number of otherwise eligible young men from whom he has been compelled to withhold the King's shilling on account of the condition of their teeth.

AT the annual meeting of the Ardrossan and West Kilbride Farmers' Society office-bearers elected were: Pres.. Wm Hogarth, Whitlees: Vice-pres, Dugald McKinnon; directors, Messrs R. Hendry, A. McKinnon, W. Whyle (Border). Hugh Hunter, Wm. Kean, John Stevenston, David Craig. Wm. Wylie (Hylmsbyre), Arch. Crawford, A. Keoch, W. Kidd and John Gray.

IN his discourse last Sunday evening. Rev. R. H. Adamson, St. John's U.F. Church, Ardrossan, discussed the game of football, mentioning among its dangers those of over professionalism and of people watching the game instead of Indulging in
athletic exercise themselves.

A Congregational Guild has been formed in Erskine Church, Saltooats, to promote the social side of the congregations life. The President is the minister, Rev. W. M. Biggam, vice president, Mr George Hepburn: secretary, Mr James Boyd, treasurer, Miss Mary Miller.

THE seventh annual competition and exhibition of Kibirnie Chrysanthemum Society was held on Saturday in the Good Templers Hall, Kilbirnie, special prizes being awarded to James W. Dunlop, Ronald Barclay, J.C. Sharp, John Martin, W. D. Alexander.

50 YEARS AGO on November 28, 1958
THE Roads Committee of Ayr, on March 3, decided to ask the British Transport Commission for an early decision on the question of the electrification system they propose to adopt for the railways in the Saltcoats-Ardrossan area to enable the County surveyor to proceed with the design details for the reconstruction of Bridge number three, Dalry Road, Ardrossan.

THE Road Safety Committee, reported to the County Council on Tuesday that there was submitted a list showing the names of the 66 whole-time drivers of County Council vehicles who had been Royal Society for the prevention of Accidents for completing the year 1957 without being involved in any accident on the public highway or elsewhere for which they were in any way blameworthy.

FOR many years it has been a matter for regret that there is, in this district, no original work to commemorate the five youthful years spent by Sir John Lavery in the North Ayrshire Town of Saltcoats. There are, of course, many reproductions. Two were actually presented by Sir John to Saltcoats Town Council and now hang in the Lesser Town Hall, Saltcoats. When the North Ayrshire Museum was opened last year it was realised that there was a Lavery gap which could not be filled by reproductions no matter how high the quality Recently the opportunity occurred to but a painting. typical of Lavery's work and representative of the portraiture for which he was so famous. The picture which has been acquired is circular and measures 24 inches in diameter.

A ROBIN has taken up an unusual residence in a Kilwinning bar in the town for the past few weeks. As the day draws to a close it hops around the bar; then finally perches on a picture for the night unperturbed by the patrons of the bar

THE new lavatory building at Stevenston shore coast a few thousand pounds to build, as it is an elaborate affair It is now up to the ratepayers to see that it is protected and not singled out for attack by vandals.

25 YEARS AGO on December 2, 1983
PART of Ardrossan's historical heritage was restored to its rightful position in the last few days. The town clock on top of the Masonic Lodge is back and keeping good time once again, according to secretary of St John's lodge No. 320, Douglas Rae. The clock, which has always been known as the town clock, was damaged beyond repair in the hurricane-force gales that lashed the Ayrshire coastline earlier this year. It was well over a hundred years old and had been working erratically before the storm damage, so it was decided that the new clock would be electronically operated.

STEVENSTON railway station will be left unmanned and Saltcoats without staff after 3pm if shock British Rail proposals become a reality. And this week a top union official described the plans as "an open invitation to vandals". Mr Dick King. Scottish Secretary of the Transport Salaried Stall Association, was also disturbed at the loss of 13 jobs at stations on the Kilwinning to Largs line. British Rail proposals for the line are contained in a document circulated to unlons earlier this month.

PUBLIC pressure to keep Ardrossan's only frozen food shop open has resulted in an amazing about turn by its owner. Mr W. Atha announced last week that Cunninghame District Council's refusal to allow him a cold store behind the shop was forcing him to close. He is not lodging an appeal against the council's decision but will keep Myka Frozen Foods at 181 Glasgow Street open meanwhile. Letters and telephone calls from regular customers have been flooding into Mr Atha's office leaving him feeling really guilty about the decision to close.

A £3.4 million nuclear training simulator designed to increase safety and efficiency was opened at Hunterston B power Station by Secretary of State for Scotland, George Younger, on Monday. It is believed to be the most advanced simulator of its type in the world and is a replica of the power station's control room. Practical experience in dealing with problems which may occur at the nuclear plant can be simulated on the highly sophisticated equipment, which replaces written exercise training. Instructors can simulate difficulties with the running of the station and gauge the control operators' reactions and ability to cope.

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Re: Looking Back - Herald files

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From the Archives of the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald published on December 3, 2008

100 YEARS AGO on December 4, 1908
YESTERDAY forenoon the opening ceremony and dedication service took place of the new Parish Church of Ardrossan, which stands on a splendid site in Caledonia Road, Saltcoats. The door was opened by Mrs McIssac, Parkend, Saltcoats, and the prayer of dedication was offered by the Right Rev Theodore Marshall, DD, Moderator of the General Assembly.

A LARGE crowd filled Saltcoats Town Hall last Friday evening on the occasion of the annual ball of Mr William Fotheringham's juvenile pupils. All 80 pupils wore fancy dress, and special dances were executed by Misses Gretna Machray, Kathie McMillan, May Craig, Joan McMillan, Greta Morrison, Violet Short, May Hamilton, May Young. Jeanie Campbell, Lizzie Caldwell, Daisy Campbell, Minnie Izatt, Robert Miller and Bob Fotheringham.

A BILLIARDS match between cueists of Ardrossan and Saltcoats Unionists resulted: - Ardrossan (Captain Pugh, P Morrison, David McDowall, R Craig, Duncan McDowall, S Goodwin, A Syme, G Laidlaw) 946; Saltcoats (M Boyland, James McGregor, W McLellan, J McKerrow, W Craig, W Allan) 1131.

A CORRESPONDENT appeals to ladies not to wear Merry Widow hats at lectures etc in local town halls; he wishes to be able to see the stage.

LAST Sabbath evening in West Kibride Town Hall, Mr Robert Logan gave an interesting address on Where Are The Dead? About 400 were present.

50 YEARS AGO on December 5, 1958
TO mark the occasion of reaching the retiring age a representative company met at the Railway Staff Association Club, Ardrossan, last Friday to honour Mr John Wilson, boilermaker, who had been with Ardrossan Locomotive Depot for nearly 32 years. Mr AC Manuel, who presided, spoke of the high esteem Mr Wilson enjoyed among his workmates and made reference to the new era of advanced mechanics where boilermaking would be a thing of the past.

Mr Wylie, locomotive foreman at the Motive Power Depot, made the presentation of a wallet of notes to Mr Wilson. He spoke highly of his abilities and expressed the sentiments of the gathering in wishing him and his good lady a very happy future. M Wilson suitably replied.

IT is over 70 years, we understand, since Handel's Messiah was performed in Ardrossan and on Sunday evening, December 14, the Barony Church Choir are presenting the work in the Church. If they are not entirely breaking fresh ground, they are at least providing something now for most of the present generation in Ardrossan.
Soloists will be Margaret Walker (soprano): Sadie Parker (contralto): Duncan Whannell (tenor), and Alex Carmichael (bass). The church choir is to be augmented for the occasion, and a string ensemble will be led by Dr John Gibb. Dr Percy Ellis will be at the organ, and the conductor will be Mr James Johnston, Attention is drawn to the advertisement which appears on the front page of this issue.

ON Wednesday shortly after 5pm, which is a busy period for buses, a double deck bus driver stopped his bus in Glasgow Street, Ardrossan, and ran back to a boy who had flashed his hand torch into the driver's face. This is a dangerous trick and one that should not be repeated.

AT 10.55pm last Sunday a collision occurred in Glasgow Street, Ardrossan, between a double deck bus and a motor car. Both vehicles were damaged but no person was injured.

TO mark the occasion of reaching the retiring age a representative company met at the Railway Staff Association Club, Ardrossan, last Friday, to honour Mr John Wilson, boilermaker, who had been with Ardrossan Locomotive Depot, made the presentation of a wallet of notes to Mr Wilson. He spoke highly of his abilities and expressed the sentiments of the gathering in wishing him and his good lady a very happy future.

25 YEARS AGO on December 9, 1983
TWO councillors angrily stormed out of a meeting this week to protest at their Labour colleagues' stand on the Ardrossan, Saltcoats and Stevenston Enterprise Trust (ASSET). Councillors Sam Gooding and Tom Morris accused some members of "viciousness" whenever ASSET was discussed. As they stormed out of Wednesday night's leisure committee, Councillor Gooding advised other councillors to follow them. Only two did - and raised voices were heard from an adjoining room. The row brewed when the council was faced with a request from ASSET to renew their lease on offices in Saltcoats Town Hall. Councillor Diane Davis suggested they should only be given six months, so the council can consider a use of their own for the rooms. She was backed up by Councillor Tom Dewar, but defeated in a vote. The committee agreed that council officials should meet with ASSET to discuss the terms of the lease. Councillor Tom Morris followed Mr Gooding's lead and left the meeting, followed shortly by Councillor Tom Dewar, who later returned.

THE public response to the pedestrianisation of Kilwinning's Main Street has surprised even its strongest supporters. The town's district councillors were amazed at the turnout for the official opening ceremony last Saturday. Councillors Jim Clements, Graham Ritchie and Drew Duncan were delighted at the response. More than 2000 people turned up to watch WestSound personality Lou Grant open the new-look street and to enjoy the various entertainments. "It was such a success that we hope to stage other entertainment in the street regularly during the spring and summer," said Councillor Clements.

STEVENSTON electrical contractor Alan Munro was a happy man on Saturday...for his five-yearold horse Mr Sunbird romped home in the first race at Newcastle to complete a great double. A Few weeks ago the hurdler won at Ayr and made a dream come true for his proud owner. "It has always been my ambition to win a race at Ayr," commented Alan "and being able to follow so quickly with another win was a great achievement for the horse and trainer Dick Allan. 1 must also praise jockey Neal Doughty. The race was being run too slow for the horse so he kicked for home early."

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Re: Looking Back - Herald files

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From the Archives of the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald published on December 10, 2008

100 YEARS AGO on December 11, 1908
MESSRS Ferguson, Saltcoats, have been appointed mole-trappers to the Irvine and District Water Board

THE new police station erected in Saltcoats has been taken possession of this week by the police authorities. Sergeant Duffus from Irvine has been appointed to Saltcoats.

ON Monday and Tuesday, Ardrossan Amateur Dramatic Company performed "A London Vagabond" in the assembly hall, the actors being Hugh Skillen, John Cance, J. H. Kerr, Peter Kean, D. McLachlan, Ben Tait, Peggy Barr, Lizzie Gilroy. Jean Dunkeld, James MacFarlane, Sally Leckie and Annie McEwing.

AT the annual meeting of Ardrossan, Saltcoats and Stevenston Merchants Association, held last Tuesday, office bearers appointed were: President, J. D. Fullerton; vice-president, Adam Wilson, jun.; secretary R. Harper; treasurer, Peter Kerr, committee (Ardrossan), Messrs Wm. Bryce, Jas. Anderson, Jas. Watson, Chas. Crinean (Saltcoats). Messrs Jas, Dunlop, A. Dunlop, R. C. Wilkie, Thos. Patrick (Stevenston), Messrs T. C. Banks, D. Frew, T. Oswald and Jas. Gilmour.

AT a concert last Friday evening in the League of the Cross Hall, Saltcoats, a laughable sketch entitled, "The Wigmakers" was performed by H. Brodie, J. Linney and P. McNamara.

AT Stevenston Literary Society meeting this week Mr Gibson and Mr Brownlee debated railway nationalisation, Mr Gibson, advocate of "pro.." triumphed in the end.

50 YEARS AGO on December 12, 1958
THERE were snow showers in Ayrshire on Wednesday night after a day of heavy rain. While the snow did not lie long after daylight on Thursday. some people had alarming experiences while it lasted. Forty members of St Paul's Woman's Guild, Fairlie, were stranded in a bus on the blizzard swept, Largs-Kilbirnie road during Wednesday night, and three service buses with about a dozen passengers were also stranded on the same road.

IN little over six weeks the congregation of St. Cuthbert's parish Church, Saltcoats, have raised more than £730 towards the cost of the church's new £1000 system of electric lighting and oil-fuel heating. This remarkable achievement is one which highlights the enthusiasm of the congregation who, this week, celebrated the jubilee of their present church building. The week's celebrations began on Sunday with special services of commemoration, and on Monday evening a congregational social was held in the church hall.

AN Indian Bazaar, organised by the Missionary Committee of the Ardrossan Congregational Church, was held on last Friday evening. The gaily decorated hall was set out as an Indian market, and goods were sold by stall holders dressed in Indian costume. The company was welcomed by Rev. Jean Thomson, who asked Mr James Mitchell, president of the church, to open the bazaar. Trade was brisk and as a result of the sale of goods on show, over 230 was realised for the London Missionary Society.

ARDROSSAN, Saltcoats and Stevenston Cage Bird Society's annual open show, which was held last Saturday in the Beach Pavilion, Saltcoats, was altogether a successful affair and attracted over 900 entries. The standard of entries was particularly good and there was some keen competition in many of the classes. Mrs J. G. Love, Saltcoats, gracefully presented the principal awards.

SIXTY-five guests attended a reception in the British legion Hal, Stevenston, last Saturday evening to honour Mr and Mrs Campbell Blair, 8 Moorpark Road West, on the occasion of their golden wedding. And for the happy couple it was a real red letter day, with countless things to remind them of December 4, 1908 - the day they were married in the High Kirk Manse.

25 YEARS AGO on December 16, 1983
PERMANENT pedestrianisation could be coming to Saltcoats as early as April next year. Under a scheme considered by Cunninghame District Council's planning committee last week, the town's Dockhead Street and part of Green Street would be traffic free at a cost of £200,000. Instead of dicing with cars, lorries and motorcycles, shoppers will be provided with medallions in a ceramic material outlining the town's history, coloured paving blocks, and a seating area at Chapelwell Street entrance to the street. A detailed scheme for the treatment of Dockhead Street after pedestrianisation was presented to the Saltcoats Area Committee of the planning committee last month.

STEVENSTON has been chosen as the base for a new company aiming to spread the word on energy conservation throughout Scotland. Energyse Ltd., which specialises in insulation, solar heating and energy recovery has taken premises at Stevenston Industrial estate which will serve as the company's head office and West of Scotland depot. Twentythree people will be employed initially but with the success the company looks forward to that number should reach 52 over the next three years.

ARRAN'S links with the mainland rail network are under threat in a working party report which also proposes British Rail job cuts. The threat comes in a report from Strathclyde Regional Council's working group, looking into what it calls the "soaring cost of subsidising west coast services At the same time as recommending the go-ahead for electrification of the Ardrossan South Beach to largs line, it sees no justification for extending the electrification from South Beach to Ardrossan Harbour. Instead it sees a feeder bus service to Kilwinning from the harbour as being one of the most economical alternative for travellers.

ARDEER Golf Club has two rare captains, for they are the first married couple to hold these positions at the same time since the club was formed more than 100 years ago. Tom and May Cunningham, of 31 Hyslop Road Stevenston, were astonished by the coincidence as anyone when they are elected as captains of the men's and women's sections of the club in September and October respectively. "It was pointed out to us last year when I became the vice-captain and match secretary at the same time as Tom became vice-captain. "We knew then we would be the first named captains," Mrs Cunningham said.

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From the Archives of the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald published on December 17, 2008

150 YEARS AGO on December 1858
Three Brothers, Ardrossan, was wrecked 20 miles westwards of Thurso and became a total loss. She was owned by Provost Barr, Ardrossan.

THE Rev Mr Cruickshanks, Stevenston, has been requested to distribute among the poor in the town 50 loads of coal, the kind donation of the Earl of Eglinton.

THE fastest passage of the year from Quebec to Ardrossan was made by an Ardrossan master. The ship did the run in 18 days.

BY the kindness of a friend, Bailie Drape, Ardrossan, has enabled to distribute 15 carts of coal among deserving householders in Ardrossan.

100 YEARS AGO on December 18, 1908
THE first man to be lodged in the new police cells at Saltcoats was allowed to go with an admonition at court on Monday. The distinction was gained by a vagrant.

OFFICE-bearers elected at the annual meeting of Ardrossan Castle Burns Club were: - President, Police Judge Crawford; Vice Presidents - the Rev JK Cameron and Mr William Tannock; Secretary, Mr Wiliam Adam; Treasurer, Mr James Tyre; committee, Messrs Bryce, Wilson, Galloway, Currie, Finn, Gardiner, Muirhead, Gibson, Barclay.

THE annual concert under the auspices of Erskine Church, Saltcoats, Sunbeam Club was held on Friday in the Church Hall, the artistes being Miss Mary B Stewart, Mrs Beveridge McGillvray, Mr Wiliam Hunter, Mr Conrad Stich, flautist: Mr JH Rimmer, cornet, and Mr William McGeachin, pianist.

THE congregation of Saltcoats and Ardrossan Free Church have extended a call to the Rev WS Heron, Partick, to minister to them.

NURSE Parker will be grateful to receive supplies of clothing of any description for the children of the poor people of Stevenston, where there is much poverty and suffering at the present time.

WEST Kilbride YMCA Mission was brought to a close on Sabbath evening last when Mr Patrick Mulrine, ex-convict and now evangelist, gave an address (in convict garb) on his unregenerate days.

THE valuation of the Burgh of Saltcoats for the year 1908-09 is: £42,418-an increase of £407 over last year: the Parish of Ardrossan portion is £31,443; the Parish of Stevenston portion is £10,785, respectively and 26 per cent of the whole.

50 YEARS AGO on December 19, 1958
ON Tuesday when a motor lorry was passing the Barony Church, Ardrossan, and making for the harbour, a two-cwt soil of carpet fell on to the roadway unknown to the driver of the vehicle. Two persons passing at the time witnessed the incident, and one of them went to the harbour and informed the driver who returned to uplift his lost cargo.

IN last week's issue of the A and S Herald, a Dalry reader complained about the filth which covers the streets and pavements of Dalry."

THE large Christmas tree now erected every year in front of Castlecraigs was put up this week complete with fairy lights. The Hunt Ball is generally the first organisation to hold their dance after the lights are switched on. The ball takes place tonight Friday) in Castlecraigs.

HE passed away peacefully at his residence, 2 Byrehill Road, Blacklands, on December 13, Kilwinning's oldest resident, Mr James Frew. He was 93. Born in the old village of Bartonholm Mr Frew spent most of his working life in the coal mines around the district, until these were closed some years ago. A keen angler, he spent many happy hours along the Garnock River. Fishing was not his only hobby, in the garden he was at his best and many amateur gardeners were about the district can thank Jimmie" for his practical advice.

THE local Fire Brigade were called out last Friday to deal with a slight outbreak of fire in a newsagent's shop at Dalry Cross.

LAST Friday night a bus load of members and friends of Kilbirnie's East Church Woman's Guild attended a mannequin parade at Ryeside Mills, Dalry. Five models took part and the proceeds were donated to charity.

25 YEARS AGO on December 23, 1983
BRITISH Petroleum are pressing to start drilling for oil or gas off Ayrshire, it was claimed this week. Cunninghame South MP David Lambie said BP would start drilling in the Firth of Clyde as soon as official permission was granted. He will now press the Government to issue drilling licences quickly. But BP itself was keeping quiet about the claim when contacted by the Herald this week. A spokesman confirmed that the company had carried out seismic tests in the Firth of Clyde. But he would only add that the technical data from the tests were still being examined. "We are not in a position to discuss whether we are likely to take it further at this stage," he said. He refused to confirm or deny suggestions that BP planned to, or had already, applied for a drilling licence.

Mounting rumours of an oil or gas exploration of Ayrshire has already prompted action from both Strathclyde Regional Council and Cunninghame District Council. Malcolm Waugh, chairman of the region's highways and transportation committee, revealed to the Herald that an action plan had been drawn up to cope with a possible "boom". But he was not willing to reveal details about what the plan contained. He said: "We are taking the rumour very seriously and in event of them being true we would be ready to step in with a programme very swiftly. "foil was discovered it would change the Ayrshire scene altogether, commercially and employment-wise."

SEVENTY jobs have been saved at the Nobel Explosives plant at Ardeer. The happy Christmas time news was made public after a detailed emergency survival plan was put to management by union shop stewards. ICI - the parent company
had proposed the axing of 100 jobs at the explosives factory unless the workers could come up with an alternative package to save cash.

Thanks to Tom McGrattan for the original
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