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War Graves and War Death Commemorations, Upper Largo, Fife

The kirkyard in Upper Largo (Largo and Newburn Parish Church, see previous post,) has two War Graves and two war commemorations.

To left. In memory of John Patrick Oliphant Russell, Captain, Royal Artillery, died of wounds in Italy, 7/9/1944. Buried at Gradara, Italy:-

War Death Commemoration Upper Largo Kirkyard 1>

Ralph Frederick Baxter, 2nd Lieutenant, Royal Sussex Regiment, killed in action, France, 25/9/1915, aged 18 and John Edward Baxter, 2nd Lieutenant, Scots Guards, killed in action in Italy, 16/10/1944, aged 19:-

War Deaths Commemoration Upper Largo Kirkyard

Serjeant T Simpson, Pioneer Coprs, formerly Royal Artillery, 10/8/1946, aged 46:-

War Grave, Upper Largo Kirkyard

Lower Inscription. In loving memory of Thomas Simpson, died 10th August, 1946:-

Lower Inscription War Grave Upper Largo Kirkyard

Lieutenant W A Freeborn, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, HMS Victory, 31/7/1944:-

Upper Largo Kirkyard War Grave

We took a diffeent way home from normal and had this unusual view of East and West Lomond, Fife’s highest hills from the Star (Star of Markinch) road:-

Two Lomonds in Fife

Upper Largo, Fife

We’ve passed through Upper Largo in Fife countless times over the years on our way to and from St Andrews but had never stopped to have a look at the church or churchyard until June last year.

The church’s full name is Largo and Newburn Parish Church. Its oldest part has been there since 1623.

Largo and Newburn Parish Church

Largo and Newburn Parish  Kirk 1

Upper Largo Kirk, Fife

Spire and Part of Upper Largo Kirk

An ancient Pictish stone in the church’s grounds is kept behind bars (presumably for protection). The cross inscribed on it may have been added after Pictish times.

Old Stone, Upper Largo Kirk 2

Old Stone, Upper Largo Kirk

The design on the reverse is definitely Pictish:-

Pictish designs

Upper Largo is, as its name suggests, at a higher elevation than Lower Largo (which is right by the side of Firth of Forth, see posts passim.) From the church there are great views over the village and of the Firth:-

sea from Upper Largo church,

aUpper Largo and sea from Kirkyard

Piping at Markinch Highland Games

(Click on each photo to play video.)

At last year’s Markinch Highland Games it seemed there were pipe bands everywhere.

Either practicing:-

Pipe Band Practice, Markinch Highland Games

More Pipe Band Practice, Markinch Highland Games

Markinch Highland Games, PIpe Band Practicing3

PIpe Band Practicing, Markinch Highland Games

Or getting ready to compete:-

Pipe Band Competition, Markinch Highland Gamess

Everything is judged, from the clothing to the marching up, the start, the marching, the piping, the drumming. Isuppos even the drummers’ stick twirling.

Approaching Start Point:-

Markinch Highland Games, Pipe Band Competition Approaching Start Point

Here we go:-

Pipe Band Competition Start, Markinch Highland Games

Markinch Highland Games 2019

Our nearest town, Markinch, is on the Highland Games circuit.

Like many other things this year’s event sadly had to be cancelled due to the coronavirus.

Last year, however, we made our first visit to Markinch Games as part of our contribution to the community. The Community Council provided filled rolls and coffee, tea etc at the Pavilion in John Dixon Park and we were helping there. We both managed to get around for a wander though.

(It wasn’t our first Highland Games. Many years ago we had attended one in Ceres.)

It’s not just athletics, there’s a Pipe Band competition – you can’t get away from the sound of the pipes – and a fun fair.

Video of fun fair:-

Fairground, Markinch Highland Games 2019

Athletics field:-

Markinch Highland Games Athletics Field 2019

Throwing the weight over a bar:-

Weight tossing

Not always successfully:-

Weight tossing

There was caber tossing too (you could see the cabers on the ground) but it wasn’t on at the time either of us had the stroll.

The athletics is taken very seriously. They had testers for illegal use of performance enhancing drugs in a separate room at the Pavilion.

This is a video of the finish of the 1600m handicap race:-

Finish, 1600 m Handicap, Markinch Highland Games 2019

Markinch Ibrox Disaster Memorial

This memorial to the five boys from Markinch who died in the Ibrox Disaster on 2/1/1971 lies directly opposite the entrance to Balbirnie Park.

Markinch Ibrox Disaster Memorial

Star War Memorial

Star, or Star of Markinch, is a village in Fife, lying between Markinch and Kennoway, and a few miles from Son of the Rock Acres.

Its War Memorial is a plaque on the wall of the Primary School.

Star War Memorial

Surrounded by Celtic knot work the inscription is “1914” (as a monogram) “Pro Patria” plus a monogrammed “1918” then, “To the glory of god and in memory of the men of Star who fell in the Great War, followed by their names and, “They overcame and they loved not their lives unto the death.

War Memorial, Star

Kennoway War Memorial

Kennoway is a village in Fife, a few miles east of Markinch.

Its war memorial is a Celtic Cross above a tapering granite plinth:-

Kennoway War Memorial

Great War Dedication; in the stone wreath above the plinth, “1914 – 1918” then “Kennoway,” “Erected in loving memory of the men of this parish who gave their lives fighting for their couhtry’s honour.” Names for the Great War:-

Great War Dedication, Kennoway War Memorial

Other Wars Dedication; World War 2, “1939 -1945,” Malaya, Korean War, Falklands:-

Other Wars Dedication, Kennoway War Memorial

Reverse; “Other conflicts, Afghanistan, Stephen Walker”:-

Kennoway War Memorial, Afghanistan

The Back Burn, Balbirnie

The Back Burn runs through the Balbirnie Estate on its way from the East Lomond round Markinch and on to the River Leven near Methilhill. It’s good for walks – even when you’re not cooped up by a lockdown.

After wandering under the A 92 and through a wooded glen it runs past the eighteenth hole of the golf course built over half of the estate:-

Balbirnie burn

Then down a cobbled slope:-

Burn

Under a bridge:-

Back Burn

On:-

Burn

And on:-

Back Burn

Back Burn

Before swinging under another bridge to make a turn under Stob Cross Road across to the railway line and down the east of Markinch:-

Back Burn

One of the things you might not expect to see in Fife but is present in the estate is a Giant Redwood tree:-

giant redwood tree

There’s a wildlife pond between the boarded path and the redwood as seen from near the burn:-

A Giant Redwood in Fife

Balbirnie Estate has a lot of rhododendron plants. They’re just about on the point of coming into flower this year. This was from 2019:-

Rhododendron, Balbirnie, Fife

Markinch War Memorial Addendum

I posted some photographs of the nearest War Memorial (Markinch) to Son of the Rock Acres here. I did not at the time post details of the dedications.

Great War dedication, “To the glory of God and in memory of the men from Markinch who laid down their lives in the Great War 1914 – 1919” below carved figure of St George.

Markinch War Memorial, Great War  Dedication and St George.

World War 2 dedication, “Remember also those who laid down their lives in the Second World War 1939 – 1945,” plus names of the fallen below carved figure of St Drostan:-

Markinch War Memorial WW2 Dedication and St Drostan

Surround stones. These display the names of the Great War dead on their internal faces:-

Markinch War Memorial, Surround Stones

Fife’s Art Deco Heritage 16: Kinghorn Moderne House

This is situated on Pettycur Road almost at the bottom, near the harbour wall and opposite the car park. Lots of horizontals and verticals here. Rule of three in windows. Flat roofs.

Art Deco/Moderne House, Kinghorn, Fife

Kinghorn Art Deco/Moderne House

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