The centenary of the birth of astronomer Thomas David Anderson (died, 6 February 1853, Edinburgh) was commemorated by the Astronomical Society of Edinburgh, in an inscription on his gravestone at Innerwick.
In 1904 Anderson left Edinburgh in search of better conditions to observe the heavens. He and his sisters moved to Northrig, Haddington and in 1910 to Thurston Mains. In 1926 they moved to Stuartslaw, Berwickshire. He died at Stuartslaw in 1932 and was buried in Innerwick churchyard.
The ‘Watcher of the Skies’ discovered at least three temporary stars, including Nova Aurigae (1892) and Nova Persei (1901), and some 53 variable stars. He was the subject of the presidential address of the Astronomical Society of Edinburgh in 1953. The following year (22 May 1954) the society arranged to have an appropriate inscription engraved on his tombstone.
For much of the period Mrs Norah Eley Kerr ran short courses in her home on gardening and cooking and demonstrated Ikebana. Such was her expertise that she went to Japan to demonstrate this Japanese art and though in indifferent health gave a final tour de force demonstration in the Astley Ainslie Hospital.
Here Pearl Young captures a time now long gone, and celebrates shared memories:
up the Doocat Brae
And take a look thigether
When we were young and had such fun
In every kind o’ weather
Those times were hard – we’ll all agree
Bare knees and ears did tingle
But every day baith work and play
Did – somehow – intermingle
Past Templemains and here’s the Kirk
There wis another tae
But the blessin’ o’ the ‘Wee Free’
You could pelter doon the brae!
At Sunday School yon David
Slingin’ stanes around his heid.
We had mair fun in the Kirk yaird
Where we played at ‘bein’ deid’.
Pass by the old Post Office
Three walkin’ postmen they had then
Who every day would walk for miles
To every ‘but an’ ben’
Then at the time o’ each new year
Through a’ that snaw and sleet
They wove their way back homewards
Fair unsteady on their feet!
The nurse biked fae the Smiddy
Tae the birthin’ she would tool
Stuck in the sink wi’ hippens
When we should have been at school.
But we had a game o’ peevers or we
Skipped and played at ‘tag’
Wee yins hingin’ on yer coat – tails
Wipin’ noses wi’ a rag.
We’ll no forget the school wi’ the ‘Big Room’ and the ‘Wee’
Miss Shiells she wis a tartar an’ she widnae let ye pee!
An thon tables were a scunner – but the gairden, it wis grand
The tawse came oot, we hawked a big spit on oor hand
An’ auld Downie gave a grimace
When we wiped it on oor breeks
But he soon was feeling sorry and let us
Oot tae plant the leeks.
We scurry past the Auld Nick
Feelin’ fearfu’ even now
That the heavy ‘hand of order’
Will descend upon our pow.
He wisnae bad yon Charlie Stewart
As ‘The Polis’ he wis grand
At ten – when we were driving
From his bike he’d wave his hand
The Village Hall- what times we’ve had
Wi’ an accordian and a fiddle
The ‘Nips o’ Brandy’ it wis grand
For loupin’ up the middle
Guid fun we’ve had in here
Wi’ nae alcohol at a’
Joe Togneri – bike an’ sidecar
Ice-cream sliders slid down braw!
Run wi’ the rolls for Jocky
Take a pitcher for the milk
Now tae the pump – ye’ve time
Tae get some water
Ye’re heid wis fairly birlin as
Ye scurried all aboot
That ye sometimes ended up
In ‘Corrie’s splatter’!
We pause at the Memorial – remember those
Who lost their lives
So that future generations could
Use drugs and wield their knives?
But life’s still good in this Parish
Which goes all against the rule
For hard work and sheer commitment
From organisations, Church and school.
The lives of our ancestors are hard for us to understand, even [those of] our immediate predecessors who grew up in the last 50 years
We are fortunate in the wealth of reminiscences, photographic material and statistical information that we have obtained but we can only try to understand not only the constant, bone-grinding hard work but also the pride and will to be educated of the average working class Scot.
We are fortunate that in our parish at this time we have more than a few ‘venerable veterans’ who have lived through not only immense hard work but also two world wars. They have willingly and cheerfully imparted their vast store of memories and experiences – what shines through has not only been their capacity for hard work but their tolerance, patience and love of life. Through it all they had fun! We salute them.
THIS ACCOUNT OF INNERWICK PARISH WAS COMPILED BY STEPHEN BUNYAN FROM MATERIAL MADE AVAILABLE FROM THE INNERWICK EXHIBITION 2000, FROM NOTES SUPPLIED BY PEARL YOUNG AND FROM DISCUSSIONS HELD WITH HER AND WITH OTHER PEOPLE IN THE PARISH, AND IN PARTICULAR WITH THE REV ANNE LITHGOW, MINISTER OF DUNGLASS.
ADDITIONAL RESEARCH AND INFORMATION WERE PROVIDED BY THE FOLLOWING:
- Sonia Baker Transport – the A1 road; Economy – Industry, Torness Nuclear Power Station
- Moyra Cowley – Economy – Industry, Thornton Mill
- Hazel Crichton – Leisure – Guides and Brownies
- Peter Crichton – Land Ownership; Economy – Agriculture
- Jan Hoddinott – Transport – Innerwick railway station, 1918-47
- Ella Macdonald – Land Ownership; Economy – Agriculture
- Sally Smith- Economy – Industry, Torness Nuclear Power Station
- Elsie Thompson – Land Ownership; Economy – Agriculture
- Adam Thorburn – Leisure – The Royal British Legion
- Hamish Thorburn – Economy – Agriculture, Thorntonloch Holdings
- Dan Yates – Economy – Agriculture, Thurston Mains
- Pearl Young – General information; Education
Thanks are due to the contributors to the Innerwick Exhibition, whose work formed the basis of this account.