Anne pieces together Largo Estate’s history

Anne Mirtle going through some of the memorabilia on Largo Estate - at the East Fife Mail office, Leven
Anne Mirtle going through some of the memorabilia on Largo Estate - at the East Fife Mail office, Leven
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A FORMER Largo woman has turned her interest in the old Largo House and Estate into a labour of love.

Anne Mirtle, who spent her childhood on the estate after her parents bought a house beside Home Farm, has pulled together the results of research through old archives, books and her own personal memories into a potted history of the families associated with the rise and fall of the once-grand mansion and estate.

“Local history is something I’ve always been interested in,” said Anne. “My father kept a scrapbook of old newspaper cuttings and photographs of things to do with the Largo area and I’ve continued it over the years.”

She is now sharing her findings through talks to local groups and, later this year, at Methil Heritage Centre.

Anne (65), whose maiden name was Syme, was three when her family came to the area and she stayed until she married and moved away in 1968.

“The main house was already a ruin, having had its roof removed, by the time I remember it as a child,” Anne said.

Now living in Glenrothes, it was after she retired five years ago and started to do voluntary work with the heritage centre that she decided to dig a bit deeper and pull together information on Largo from various sources.

Anne’s research on the Largo Estate covers from sea captain Sir Andrew Wood in the 15th century through 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, with the Durham family, who built Largo House in 1750, to the present day and the Makgill-Crichton family.

But her work also takes in her memories of other families who lived on the estate and other features that are now long gone, such as the laundry and curling pond.

Another aspect of local history that Anne looked into was its nautical connections, in particular Sir Andrew Wood, Phillip Durham and, of course, Alexander Selkirk.

•If you would like to find out more about Anne’s collection of information, you can contact her at annemirtle@yahoo.co.uk or through Methil Heritage Centre.