Good morning Alastair,
A friend arrived yesterday and
loaned me a copy of the illustrated historic book ‘From Castle Rock To
Torbrex’ (1962) [No Copyright] … which I had last seen when it was
issued free to all pupils, …. and staff [including me!] of The New High
School of Stirling at Torbrex in 1962.
I have worked almost non-stop on
it since receipt, and attach the outcomes...
FROM CASTLE ROCK TO TORBREX - 1962
Digital scanning and optical character recognition by, John Henderson
Esq., B.A. (Hons.), D.P.E.
Pupil at The High School of Stirling,
Academy Road, Stirling (1951-1957), Teacher of Mathematics and Physical
Education at The High School of Stirling, Torbrex, Stirling (1962-1965)
son of, James Nicoll Kerr Henderson Esq., M.A. Pupil at The High School
of Stirling, Academy Road, Stirling (1924-1925) Headteacher, Primary
Department of The High School of Stirling, Academy Road, Stirling
by J. Geddes, Rector, High School of Stirling, Torbrex, 17th May 1962.
The “raison d’etre” of this small
publication, if any explanation of it is required, is just this. On the
twenty fifth day of April 1962 there ended an epoch in the history of
the High School of Stirling and a new era was begun by the transference
of the school from the old building in Spittal Street to the new
building at Torbrex. I felt that such a signal event should be marked in
a way truly fitting the occasion. Over a hundred fruitful years had been
spent in the old building. Two gracious stained-glass memorial windows
adorned its stairway and the Book of Remembrance in that simple but
dignified alcove bore proud but grave testimony to the sacrifice of
young lives that the school had made in two world wars in order that the
free peoples of the world might survive.
Not only this, but a history of the school from the twelfth century had
been the scholarly and loving work of a former Rector: A. F. Hutchison,
M.A., and so well had he done his work that we should be accounted
unworthy of his example and unmindful of his memory, if we did not
return to his book for new inspiration and bring up to date, however
briefly, the record of the last sixty years.
I conceived, therefore, the idea that a fitting tribute to all that the
old school had been in the past and some guidance to a new vision of the
future might be embodied in a little book which would consist of two
essays: the first intended to be an expression of our gratitude to those
who in former years taught in the school and to those administrators who
made such teaching possible; the second, to facilitate the extension of
our affection to our new home by revealing to us how our traditions
might be maintained in a new setting worthy of a great Scottish school.
Towards this end I enlisted the willing aid of two of my colleagues
whose personal knowledge of the school over many years and of the local
history of Stirling enabled them to do justice to such a theme. The two
essays, therefore, have the inspiration begotten of a depth of
affection, an intensity of interest and a fullness of knowledge which
cannot fail to reach the hearts of all who have a genuine love and
respect for those things worth retaining, indeed — should I say — which
must be retained if our souls are to survive in a sadly materialistic
The two colleagues to whom I refer are Miss Jessie M. Thomson, M.A.,
Principal Teacher of History, and Mr Charles Strachan, M.A., Deputy
Rector and Principal Teacher of English, who have devoted to their task
many hours of their time in a busy and difficult session. This has been,
I know, a labour of love; nevertheless, we are deeply indebted to them.
I should like to express our gratitude to Dr Gilbert F. Cunningham, and
to Mr John P. Cunningham of the firm of Robert Cunningham and Sons Ltd.,
printers, Alva. This firm’s great interest, generosity and fine
workmanship have made this little volume worthy of a place in the
library of the most fastidious bibliophile. To Mr John P. Cunningham we
are also indebted for the attractive cover design.
This booklet is proffered to you out of a reverence and respect for the
past and in the hope that others may be inspired to continue where this
has left off.
Ave Atgue Vale (pdf)
The Historical and
Literary Associations (pdf)