Nostalgia: Stolen cats, blokes’ shopping day, potato harvest

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Stories that made the headlines this week in years gone by.

Do you remember these stories?

December 14, 1957

Potato harvest: Fife Education Committee in Kirkcaldy were told that this year’s potato harvest in regard to schools assistance had caused “the least educational upset”. The number of children volunteering to take part in the harvest was stated to be 5,500 – 35 fewer than last year. The harvest was noticeable in that it was the first occasion that no child had worked for more than 10 school days. Provost JM Playfair said: “This is the first year we have been able to say that. And, helped by the weather, it has been a record lift from the point of view of the children’s labour.”

Crem concern: Concern at the delay in constructing the Crematorium at Dunnikier Park was expressed by Councillor William L Taylor at Kirkcaldy Town Council on Monday. He said he visited the Crematorium last week and was surprised at the lack of activity, there being very few men on the job.

Work had been going on for 18 months – the time which they had estimated would be required to complete the project. He was concerned that Kirkcaldy people still had to travel to Edinburgh for facilities. In addition there was the considerable cost involved.

December 16, 1977

Shoppers’ bus: Christmas shoppers in Kirkcaldy will be in line for a free gift-wrapped present next week. For when the town’s High Street goes ‘walkabout’, a special shoppers’ bus is to be laid on. The free bus will pick up motorists from outlying car parks, where there is a festive bonus of free parking, and drop them in the centre of town. The same bus will also take housewives back to their cars. The new idea for Christmas goes into operation next Friday and Saturday, when High Street will be closed to traffic between Whytescauseway and Port Brae from 11am to 6pm.

Cinema conversion: Kirkcaldy’s ABC cinema, closed for the past seven weeks during conversion work, is to re-open its doors to the public on Sunday.

With work on the ABC – which is undergoing a transformation to a three-unit film centre – more than half-finished, the first of the new cinemas, ABC 1, will be making its debut with a showing of ’Orca ‘. Work on the other new cinemas, ABC 2 and 3, should be completed towards the end of January. The conversion, at an estimated cost of £100,000, will reduce seating capacity from 1677 to 1102.

December 12, 1997

Church vandals: Vandals have launched a fresh spate of attacks against a Kirkcaldy kirk. It’s thought young drinkers are to blame for the latest smashing spree which has claimed nine windows in just five days at Templehall Parish Church. And the Rev Brock White, the minister who has served the parish for the last 27 years, says the church is having to make its buildings more vandal proof as the attacks keep on coming. “We’ve gradually barricaded ourselves in,” said Rev White, who added that broken windows were being ditched for tough polycarbonate cements.

Vanishing Ashley: A Kirkcaldy girl’s portrait of a vanishing snowman melted the hearts of judges in a festive competition. Now Ashley Kirk’s drawing has been made into a full-size poster to promote a Christmas show. The eight-year-old winner from Sinclairtown Primary was presented with a framed copy of the design to mark her success.

She was one of dozens of local pupils who took up the challenge to create publicity material for The Vanishing Snowman. The show for younger children is being staged in schools by Kirkcaldy-based In Company Theatre Productions.

December 13, 2007

Cats nicked: A Fife cat shelter has warned pet owners to keep their cats indoors or else face losing them altogether. The number of cats reported missing from the Kingdom’s homes has hit a record high over the last few weeks, with more than 20 cats disappearing from Kirkcaldy homes alone. And now Cupar Animal Trust Shelter (CATS) has warned that the high number of missing felines may be down to thieves taking the animals for dog baiting or overseas fur trade. Secretary Sarah Ross said: “We have reports of 10 to 12 cats all going missing from the same street.”

Blokes Day: Stressed out male shoppers in Kirkcaldy can take advantage of their own special day next week to avoid panic buying Christmas presents for their loved ones. Following on from the UK’s first Girlie Day today, the popular Blokes Day makes a welcome return to the Lang Toun. Scotland’s only such town centre wide event will be staged on Thursday, December 20, and will once again offer an unrivalled package of customer care services to male Christmas shoppers. High Street retailers and local niche shops will take part.