Window into the past for Kirkintilloch

Kirkintilloch Burgh Charter
Kirkintilloch Burgh Charter

THIS weekend will see the launch of a special exhibition offering a glimpse into 800 years of Kirkintilloch’s history.

‘Treasures From The Archives’ will give members of the public the chance to check out some of the oldest items from East Dunbartonshire Council’s vaults - a collection which includes over 40,000 photos and countless documents.

It is all part of the celebrations to mark 800 years since Kirkintilloch was granted Barony Burgh status.

The star attraction is a copy of the charter which conferred the honour on the town in 1211.

While it is not the official document it is an ancient artefact in its own right dating back to the 16th century.

Information and archives officer Janice Miller, who organised the exhibition, explained: “Unfortunately the original has not survived and has been lost for some time - in common with most other burghs who have also lost their original charters.

“This is a copy dated 1566-1584. It was drafted by a notary and is an exact copy of the original using the same phrasing as the 1211 charter.”

The charter, which is written in Latin, was returned to East Dunbartonshire’s archives service on Monday by the National Records of Scotland, who have carried out restoration and conservation work on the parchment in preparation for its public display.

Another document set for a rare outing is a 500-year-old manuscript donated by a collector three years ago which shows a land transaction between William Jack and John Dollar in 1518.

Written in old Scots, it describes a piece of land in Kirkintilloch to the east of the ‘Water of Luggie’ and incorporates an ancient wax seal with a coat of arms.

The exhibition will also feature an early council minute book dating back to 1772, as well as several other fascinating glimpses into times gone by.

The display, in the foyer of Kirkintilloch’s William Patrick Library, will be officially opened this Saturday (October 1) by East Dunbartonshire Culture and Leisure Trust chairwoman councillor Amanda Stewart and council leader Rhondda Geekie.

The Treasures from the Archives exhibition is on at the library throughout October.