Saturday, April 18, 2009

Hamish remembers...

A few more memories from our correspondent Hamish,
'A fire appliance passed by my home on the way to an incident a few days ago and that caused me to reflect on my own career in the Fire Service and then on to two fire incidents that occurred in Nairn when I was, I’d say, in my early “teens” in the thirties.

One of these involved a factory that produced good quality woollen garments and the like and was sited at the junction of Millbank Street and Millbank Crescent. It was constructed mainly of timber and I believe was owned by the Misses Ellis who were the owners of the Golf View and Golf Links hotels at that time. The factory had not been in production for long – probably only a matter of months when it caught on fire and the building together with. the machinery and contents became a total loss.

Near to the same time as this incident a large quantity of wool arrived by train in Nairn and was stolen very soon after its arrival there. I recall that the value of the wool was in the region of £600 and that could have bought a house or two cars then. The local opinion was that it had to be an “inside job”.
I don’t recall that the case was ever solved.

The other incident was rather a tragic one. It happened during the night hours in McGillivray the coal merchant’s yard which was sited down near to the harbour and Mr. Walker the boat builder’s yard. The stables there were completely destroyed and the three cart horses stabled therein were burnt to death. I recall being told that one or more had been led out from the building but had panicked and had dashed back into the inferno.'

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