Largs Through the Millennia

The members of the club were treated to a fascinating talk at their recent meeting on the History of Largs, beginning way back in pre-historic times with the story of Largs’ own Neolithic Tomb (behind the Douglas Park).

Local history expert Anne Cowgill then skipped a few millennia to bring us into the middle ages and the first record of a church minister in Largs in 1253. 

The original parish church, just off Main Street (or High Street as it used to be called) was demolished in the early 1800s, by which time the parish of Largs, which extended from Fairlie to Skelmorlie, had been host to some 37 ministers.

Among the many curious facts presented by Anne, was the story of how the stones of the demolished church were used to increase the height of the kirkyard wall, to deter the body-snatchers. Maybe Largs had its own local ‘Burke and Hares’……

Feuding families; the fearsome Sir Robert Montgomerie, transformed into a remorseful penitent; high-jinks at the annual Colms’ Day Fair; long gone industries, especially weaving, but including the town’s own distillery; how the plague (probably typhus) swept through the area, and the story of the Prophet’s Grave. 

These and many more snippets from the history of Largs and district helped to broaden the members’ knowledge of local history. Being an ex-teacher, there was slight concern that Anne might have set a test for the members at the end, but luckily not. She did however draw attention to our excellent local museum, which should be re-opening by Easter, and put out a call for museum volunteers. More information and contact details can be found on the Largs Museum website and FaceBook page. 

Largs Probus Club will next meet in the Willowbank Hotel on Wednesday 21 February at 10am when Dr Mark Nixon will speak on the 1884 Reform Demonstration.
Future events include the AGM on 28th February; Ian Fraser speaking on Romania on 6th March and Drew Cochrane speaking on Confessions of an Editor on 13th March.

Men over the age of 50 who are retired, or nearing retirement, can attend three meetings as a guest before deciding whether to become a Club member. Please use our Contact Form if you wish to attend as a guest, or to enquire about joining.