Talks

October 2019 Meeting

17th October 2019

Ian Scott, “James Watt”

7:30 pm in the Abbey Church Halls, Dunfermline.

2019 is the 200th Anniversary of the death of James Watt, one of the most influential of the pioneering engineers of the industrial revolution. Those of you who were on the DHS outing to Kinneil House in 2016 will remember the brief biography we were given then, by James Watt himself, apparently, so we are very lucky to have a historian from Falkirk visiting to tell us more about him.

Ian Scott was Assistant Principal at Falkirk College where he taught history for a number of years.  He has been both Director and national Chairman of the Saltire Society.  Ian’s main interest is the history of the Falkirk area and he has written several books on the subject including Falkirk: a History published in 2006.  He has written over 400 historical articles for the Falkirk Herald and was a founder member of Falkirk Local History Society in 1981.   

New programme 2019- 2020

Our talks programme for the new season is now finalised. We are delighted to start this session on 19th September with Prof. Sir Geoff Palmer, who will present “Scotland and the Slave Trade“. The programme continues until 21st May next year concluding with Dick Alderson and Blair Law talking on “Woodlands and Warfare in Dalgety Bay”. In between we have a variety of expert speakers who will cover a wide range of subjects, from the local to the international.

All meetings are on the 3rd Thursday of the month, except for our members Christmas evening, and are held in The Abbey Church Hall, Dunfermline.

Old members, new members and visitors will all be made welcome.

September 2019 Meeting

19th September 2019

Dunfermline Historical Society, 7:30pm

Professor Sir Geoff Palmer, “Scotland and the Slave Trade”

Sir Godfrey Henry Palmer OBE is Professor Emeritus in the School of Life Sciences at Heriot-Watt University and a human rights activist. In his academic career as a botanist, he specialised in grain science and brewing and has been honoured with multiple honorary degrees and scientific awards.

Sir Geoff is also deeply involved in charity work and the promotion of human rights. He has written many newspaper articles on education and race relations and a book on the history of slavery, The Enlightenment Abolished: Citizens of Britishness. He is the Honorary President of the Edinburgh and Lothians Regional Equality Council. In 1989, he became the first black professor in Scotland, becoming a professor emeritus after he retired in 2005. He was knighted in the 2014 New Year Honours List.

As usual we meet in the Abbey Church Halls for the first meeting of our new session, and welcome all members, new members and visitors.

May 2019 Meeting

16th May 2019

Dunfermline Historical Society, 7:30pm

Sam Foster, Dunfermline Town Planning

Sam is an architect in Dunfermline specialising in contemporary ecological architecture. As a member of “Friends of Dunfermline” he is involved in work to regenerate the former Pilmuir Works and the town centre more generally. It should be fascinating to hear about the history of Dunfermline from Sam’s perspective.

As usual we meet in the Abbey Church Halls for our last meeting of this session, and welcome all members and visitors.

April 2019 Meeting

18th April 2019

Dunfermline Historical Society, 7:30 pm

Prof. Richard Oram, “Quite Happy  – The Diary of James Fyffe a Cattle Dealer 1836 – 40”

Professor Oram is Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities and Professor of Medieval and Environmental history at the University of Stirling. A graduate of St Andrews University, he worked in commercial property before returning to academia as an honorary lecturer in History at Aberdeen. His research interests include; Environmental History of the North Atlantic region, epidemic disease and its associated social impacts in medieval and early modern Scotland, lordship and landscape in medieval Britain and Ireland and Monastic landscapes in northern Europe c.1100-c.1350. In 2008 he was appointed to the Historic Environment Advisory Council for Scotland, which provides advice to Scottish Ministers on aspects of policy and public engagement in the sector.

We meet at the Abbey Church Halls as usual and all visitors are warmly welcome.