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Haig Memorial, Ladybank

Field Marshal Earl Haig‘s family were the proprietors of Haig whisky. Their Ramornie House was near the town of Ladybank (see the two previous posts) and even had their own waiting room at the local Railway Station, though it was built by a previous onwer of the Ramornie Estate.

Their whisky distillery was a few miles away in Markinch.

There are two memorials to the Field Marshal in Ladybank.

Haig Memorial Gates, Ladybank. The inscription reads, “These pillars and chains were erected by the ex-service men of Ladybank and district to the glorious memory of Field-Marshal Earl Haig.” Ladybank War Memorial is in the background:-

Haig Memorial Gates, Ladybank

The Haig Memorial Garden lies behind Ladybank’s War Memorial. This is how the garden looked in 2018:-

Haig Memorial Garden, Ladybank

Information Board, Haig Memorial Garden:-

Information Board Haig Memorial Garden, Ladybank

A plaque on the wall gives the information that the gardens were refurbished in 1993 and re-opened by Menzies Campbell, then the local MP:-

Refurbishment Plaque Haig Memorial Gardens, Ladybank

Irn Bru

The title to yesterday’s post was, of course, an allusion to an advertising slogan used by Barr’s, the Scottish soft drink manufacturers, to promote Irn Bru, which outsells Coca-Cola in Scotland. Barr’s use of their Scottishness is astute. I have posted their High School Musical parody before.

Irn Bru has had a few slogans, starting off in a comic, The Adventures of Ba-Bru and Sandy.

The two best, however, are undoubtedly, “Made in Scotland From Girders” and “It’s Your Other National Drink.”

The last is doubly appropriate since the first national drink – whisky – has unfortunate side-effects (hangover) for which Irn Bru is widely thought to be a sovereign cure.

And it does contain iron – at least as a compound – in the form of ammonium ferric citrate.

Here is their parody of The Snowman, which showcases some iconic Scottish landscape features. It’s just a pity the boy treble doesn’t manage to roll the “r” in Irn enough. (I’m not sure he rolls it at all, in fact.)

Irn Bru: The Snowman

The Angels’€™ Share

Sixteen Films, Why Not Productions and Wild Bunch. Directed by Ken Loach.

I saw this on one of my occasional jaunts to the local part-time cinema, which is a theatre most of the time.

This apparently won the Jury Prize at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival.

This reminded me a lot of Christopher Brookmyre’s books. Comedy is mixed in with violence but here the violence isn’€™t overplayed. It starts off with a very funny scene set on a railway platform where a remote Station Master berates a drunken would-be passenger over the tannoy to stand back as there’€™s a train coming. The bemused recipient of this warning behaves as you might expect but it‒s very well played. This character, Albert, is the butt of a lot of the humour in the film as he is presented as incredibly thick.

The plot revolves around a group of four convicts on community pay-back sentences being introduced to the arcane delights of whisky tasting by their overseer, Harry, a somewhat unbelievably sympathetic character. One of their number, Robbie, has just become a father and wishes to leave behind his life of brushes with the law and make a stable home for his girlfriend and child. He turns out to have an excellent nose for whisky and hatches a scheme to (ahem) spirit away – the angels’€™ share is a whisky industry term for the portion of a barrel which evaporates between it being laid down and finally tapped off so the phrase seems apposite – some of a recently discovered barrel of an extremely rare and well regarded whisky.

The movie does trade a lot in Scottish cliché – whisky, kilts, Irn Bru, violence -€“ but is very entertaining. A knowledge of West of Scotland demotic and a tolerance for expletives are necessary for full appreciation, though.

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