You can now view the video of our May meeting, featuring a talk by Alexandra Lotz on "Horse Heritage".

Coming events

Society meetings are held on Wednesdays and start at 7 p.m.

The principal ambition of our lecture programme is always to honour aspects of our cultural and social history through stories of art, archaeology, architecture, archaeology and history relevant to Falkland but not necessarily local. We trawl our circles of friendship and acquaintance vigorously for speakers who are active in their chosen fields. This has been true of all our lecturers who have spoken to us since September, but it gave great pleasure that following the talk on 11 November by Nic Boyes the feedback included two very strong messages of approval both of the topic (conserving stone buildings and sculpture) and of a very engaging lecturer who knows how to make his subject-matter attractive and interesting to others.

All are welcome – you don’t even have to be a member, just sympathetic to our aims! Just sign up using the form on our "Contact" page. All subscribers automatically receive the monthly Newsletter, with links to the lecture meeting and to anything else that is going on.

All talks subject to confirmation. It is likely that all or most will be by Zoom but in any event we shall be following the Scottish Government’s public health guidance.

9 June 2021

David F. Wilson, public artist

David was one of the first graduates in Scotland to achieve an MA in Public Art & Design. What he has done with this achievement he puts very well in his own words: ‘My passion for art has always been for work in public spaces. Inspired by the new art works that were springing up around Scotland in the New Towns of Glenrothes and Irvine, and in Dundee specifically, I directly experienced the benefits that art and artists can have on communities. I came to realise that if the environments we live in or pass through as visitors are respected, treated as important and designed as if they really matter, the wider public reaps the benefits and has a far more positive experience within those settings.’

Peter Burman writes: ‘I was thrilled and inspired the first time I heard David speak in public about the wonderful work he does as an artist, not only for the beauty of textures and pattern-making in his work, but also for the skilful and sympathetic way in which he works with the communities for whom his work is generally commissioned.’

14 July 2021

A day on the Wemyss Estate

We are invited to the Wemyss Estate to include a visit to the incomparable Wemyss School of Needlework, conducted by Fiona Wemyss who runs the school, and the far-famed gardens of Wemyss Castle, where we will be welcomed by Fiona's sister-in-law, Charlotte Wemyss. Further details and booking form in the June Newsletter.

This is the visit that had to be postponed from May because of the Covid restrictions, and of course, it is still dependent on the nature of the regulations which will be in force at the middle of July. We very much hope that it will be able to go ahead: we've not had a Falkland Society outing for a very long time. We have plenty of good ideas for more!

18 August 2021

Elly Crichton Stuart: A Queen, a Lady of Letters and a Collector of Ballads

If you have ever visited Falkland Palace, you may have noticed the portrait of a woman to the left of the fireplace in the drawing room. She is Mary Wortley Montagu, who wrote her first poem at the age of twelve, had a long correspondence with Alexander Pope and brought the smallpox innoculation to the West from Constantinople. Hanging nearby is a portrait of Mary Queen of Scots, who loved Falkland and found time, whilst staying at the palace, to go hunting in the forest. Anna Gordon, who lived at Falkland Palace until 1802, has been described as the female Robert Burns. “No Scottish ballads are superior in kind to those recited in the last century by Mrs Brown of Falkland” wrote Francis James Childs in the introduction to his collection “The English and Scottish popular ballads 1882–1898”.

Elly Crichton Stuart was born and brought up in Falkland Palace. She went to drama school in London and has an MA in Art History and Theory from Essex University. Her many jobs have included actor, playwright, charity shops organizer, storyteller and bereavement counsellor. Since 2019 she has worked as an elder, performer, writer, community connector, and mindfulness practitioner.

15 September 2021

Kirsty Archer-Thompson: 250 years of Sir Walter Scott: Past, Present and Future

Kirsty Archer-Thompson is Curator of Sir Walter Scott’s celebrated Abbotsford House in the Borders, and we hope to arrange a visit to Abbotsford very soon afterwards. The meeting will also include our AGM, when we will be electing office bearers and committee for the year ahead.