2012 TAYLOR HENDERSON – “My Fantasy Arch”
Winner of the Helen Ward Birkby Memorial Trophy 2011
Bo’ness always celebrates the last Friday in June. The golden sun always shines on this special day. This day is the Bo’ness Children’s Fair Festival. All the people in Bo’ness are involved and one thing the mums, dads and friends get stuck into is the arch.
If you talk to someone that doesn’t live in Bo’ness about the Fair they may think, ‘Oh it’s only a gala day’. Well it’s not. The Fair all started for the miners so it was the only day off for them. It started in the 1780’s. The men would all get two glasses of whisky each and they would go down to the shore and watch the working ponies race. Then the men would get drunk and cause chaos. So in 1897 Provost Stewart changed it to a Children’s Day. The first Queen was from Bo’ness Academy and her name was Grace Strachan.
The first arch was built by the Kinneil miners. It was marvellous. The miners must have been up all night long looking for boxwood to cover the beautiful arch. When it was immaculate on the Fair Morning, the people of Bo’ness were stunned, However Grangepans miners thought that they should do an arch too. The next again year they did make an arch. So that’s where building an arch came from, but nowadays it’s mainly house frontages. You may thin they’re the same but there not. An arch is something away from your house and you can walk through whereas a house frontage is against your house. There have been some amazing arches over the years such as Queen Shanagh’s arch (2009) with the Hippodrome, the bus and all the little shops. It was like a mini Bo’ness. Queen Lauren’s (2005) arch was a Cinderella’s castle and carriage with lots of characters in her garden. I was a presentee in 2009 and my arch was Emerald City because the theme was ‘The Wizard of Oz’. When you see your arch up and ready on the Fair E’en you feel like you’re on top of the world.
Now, my fantasy arch would have to be a fairy arch. I would have a dazzling snow globe with Tinkerbelle gracefully pointing her magic wand. There would be a big red button. So what’s it for? When you push this button all the sparkles in the globe would shoot up and then they would flutter back down to the ground like leaves falling from the trees in the autumn. That’s not all. Peter Pan shall come flying over with a sign saying, “Bo’ness Children’s Fair Festival.” The sun would be shining on another sign which says , “This way to Glebe Park.” On the bottom of the snow globe it would say. Taylor, Fairy and the dazzling Deanburn badge next to it.
I’m a Flowergirl this year so it will be really exciting to see my arch or house frontage up so everyone will see. And we all have to remember that the Bo’ness Fair day is the best day of the year.
P7 Deanburn Primary