OLD & NEW PICTURES of LOCHGELLY
LOCHGELLY is the highest town in Fife. It was present as a community in the 14th Century. It may have started life as a watering stop or market trading village. A former coal mining town situated between Perth and Edinburgh, it was designated a Burgh in 1876. The coming of the agriculture revolution found coal during the farming and was mined for fuel. With the industrial revolution in the early 19th century iron ore was also found with the coal. The entrepreneurs were quick to realise the potential and new iron works and mines commenced. It owes its prosperity to the Ironworks and Collieries to which are now long gone.“Loch Gellie”, named after the loch on the outskirts of the town is believed to mean shining water or bright lake. It contained trout and pike, which I fished in the early 60s, famous for its water ski-ing alas now gone.
The Tawse or “belt” often hidden under a teachers jacket shoulder was crafted here initially by Mr Robert Philp and inflicted many a sting to my fingers.
In the 1850s a mineral railway had been laid to transport coal, many years later a station was built at the bottom of Station road. In 1909 the trams started operating and they travelled between Lochore and Dunfermline. Around 1919, buses arrived and the trams were finally succeeded by them in 1937.
Today Lochgelly has a must play 18 hole golf course with views over the Ochil and Lomond hills. A High School built in 1986 and the Lochgelly Centre built in 1976. A Library soon to be rehoused in the Miners Institute under the regeneration plans for the town which has already seen streets of council flats demolished to make way for new housing. Shop fronts in Bank Street have been modernised with Main Street to follow soon. Many exciting plans are proposed for this up and coming village.
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