The Village of Killearn, Scotland
The All Killearn Archive
The Killearn Community Futures Company was formed in 2003 as a mechanism for advancing the Killearn Community Action plan. The company is intended to be an umbrella organisation for more focussed "Project Groups" with specific areas of responsibility within the community. Initially four Project Groups were set up :-
- The Old School
- To work on the development of the former Nursery School building and site as a community resource.
Unfortunately this proved impractical and the site has now been sold to a developer who intends to refurbish the school as housing.
- The Kingdom
- To work on the maintenance of the 0.5 hectare site between The Oaks, Chestnut Crescent and Lampson Road as a path and community woodland.
After obtaining appropriate technical advice, two community action days were arranged on the site to clear much of the undergrowth, fell small trees, open up overgrown paths and remove redundant fencing. Following this, contractors felled larger trees and shredded some of the woody material to provide chippings for paths. Volunteers have used these chippings, and further loads donated by contractors, to improve the paths through the area. The community will now maintain the area as a local resource.
- The Playpark
- To work towards the regenerate the Playpark with new equipment and landscaping.
This group has been very successful with the playpark now fully refurbished. There is an on-going maintenance programme to ensure the area remains an attractive and safe facility for local and visiting children.
- The Footpaths Project
- To work towards formally establishing footpaths (including some suitable for disabled access) in the area, produce a footpaths map of the village, and aid the Core Paths Project within Killearn.
This group has now produced a map of walks in the Killearn area suitable for a wide range of abilities. This ranges from a five hour return trip to Earl's Seat on the Campsie fells to a short walk around Killearn Glen. The group is now working on projects to enable disabled access to the track locally known as the "Pipe Track Road" and to establish an off road route from the village to the West Highland Way.
It was envisaged that some groups would be dissolved when their work was complete and others would be formed as new projects were established.
Though Killearn is the largest village in the area it had no heritage group though other smaller local communities have groups under various names. A number of residents have come together to start an additional Project Group, now named the "All Killearn Archive" ( AKA ) to safeguard the heritage of the village and parish.
There were a number of reasons for this :-
- Many enquires are received, mainly through the internet, regarding family history or the history of the parish. There is a need to draw together relevant historical documents to facilitate research.
- Residents have artifacts, records or photographs from Killearn's past which it would be of value to collect in one place and preserve (or copy, photograph and catalogue). There is a real risk that the value of historic material will not be realised and many items will end up in the "black bag" heading for the landfill site.
- People have memories of life in the area which should be conserved.
- Life today is tomorrow's history. A record will be of real interest to people in the future.
- People would like to learn more about the history of the area and understand why modern Killearn is the way it is.
Drop in Days
"Drop in Days" were held in April 2007, March 2008 and March 2009 in the Village Hall. Everyone was invited to come along during the day to discuss the work being undertaken. A number of long term residents of Killearn received personal invitations. The 2009 day had as a theme the young people's uniformed organisations ( Scouts, Guides, Brownies, BB etc. ). Many of the village's young and not-so-young people found browsing the photographs and memorabilia on display brought back fond memories.
On each occasion visitors started to appear as soon as the doors opened and many were still there hours later! Members were busy interviewing visitors and copying photographs they brought along. So much was received that there was insufficient time to record all the information. We were grateful to those who allowed their photographs and written material to be retained for copying later. We would also like to thank those who donated material to the Archive.
If you have items of historical interest which are no longer required they would be most welcome to the Archive. Material can be passed on to any of the Archive members for safe storage and cataloging. In addition we would like to copy any photographs, pictures, maps or written historical material to add to the Archive. Members can arrange home visits to record material so that it does not have to leave the owner's presence.
The AKA is currently working on the story of the village War Memorial and those commemorated on it.