Welcome to Burntisland Heritage Trust

The aim of the Trust is to protect and promote
all aspects of Burntisland's heritage.

Burgh seal

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This website had 251,000 visitors in the year to 31 December 2020.

Please see below for:
Heritage Exhibition    Guided Walks    Other Activities    Appeal for Old Photos
    For more information on the exhibitions and walks, please contact the Convenor of Burntisland Heritage Trust, Ian Archibald (telephone 01592 872121 or ) (or contact via website manager)

Free download: 46 page booklet, "Burntisland Streets and the Origin of Their Names" by John Burnett - please click here to download (PDF file, 5.5Mb, opens in a new tab or window). Paper copies of the booklet are also available, price £5. Please contact us if you would like a paper copy.

2023 Exhibition

This year we are offering a bumper helping. From Saturday 17th June you can step back in time to the early days of the steamship and to shipbuilding in Kinghorn and Burntisland. The Abden yard of John Key & Sons opened in 1868 and at that time was at the forefront of iron shipbuilding, driven by Kirkcaldy built steam engines. Just as the Kinghorn yard was closing a modern yard was opening at Burntisland. Driven by the demands of WWI and the extraordinary drive of two brilliant brothers. We look at the innovation that saw a yard go from a bare stretch of land to the launch of its first ship within twelve months. Full details of the exhibition are in the poster on the right.

New YouTube Channel

Our new YouTube channel contains a wide and varied selection of videos. A list of these can be found here. All of them show some of Burntislandís rich history and heritage.

Restoration of Paintings

In 2019, the Trust was able to secure funding to allow it to go ahead with the restoration of three important Burntisland paintings, two by Andrew Young and one by S. Humble. The conservation treatment of all three ("The Bridge of Life", "The Magistratesí Seat" and "View of Burntisland from the Lammerlaws") has now been completed. Please click here for more information on the project; and here to see the YouTube video on the project.

Guided Historical Walks

Our programme of guided walks round the inner and outer heritage trails is in abeyance because of Covid-19. Details will be posted here when they resume.

Other Heritage Trust Activities

Presentations - the Trust's Convenor regularly undertakes talks on the following subjects:
    * Burntisland's Gifts and Treasures.
    * The Search for the Lost Treasure of King Charles I.
    * Shipwrecks of the Forth and Beyond.
    * Island Jewels of the Forth.
    * The Remarkable Mary Somerville - Queen of 19th Century Science.
    * The Lewis Chessmen Unmasked.
    * A Revolution in Mapping: History of the Ordnance Survey.
    * The Man Who Told the Truth: The story of the Orcadian explorer Dr John Rae who discovered the missing link.
         to the North West Passage and is arguably the greatest of all Arctic Explorers.
    * The Vasa Story: The mighty warship Vasa capsized and sank in Stockholm in 1628 after sailing for only two hours.
         After 333 years on the sea bed the warship was salvaged and the voyage continues today as the Vasa is the
         only intact preserved 17th century ship in the world and is the most visited museum in Scandinavia.
    * Above and Below the Waves of Scotlandís West Coast.

Please contact Ian Archibald on 01592 872121 if your organisation would be interested in hosting a talk. The presentations are undertaken specifically to raise funds for the work of Burntisland Heritage Trust and a donation to the trust is always appreciated.

The Trust was the lead organisation in the Kirkton Church restoration project (link opens in a new tab or window).

The Trust has produced a number of books and publications, most of which are still available - please see our 'Publications for Sale' page and our 'Heritage Trails Leaflet' page.

Heritage Trust projects include the erection of two comprehensive commemoration panels in the town; and an oral history programme, recording the memories of the town's older residents for posterity.

In 2020 the old red phone box outside the Public Library was converted into a Heritage Trust display kiosk. It now shows information about important events in the town's history. Click here for details.

In a joint venture in 2007, Burntisland Heritage Trust and the Arsenal Scotland Supporters Club erected a plaque to commemorate David Danskin, the founder and first captain of Arsenal Football Club - please see the David Danskin Commemoration Plaque page. In a similar venture in 2008, the Trust joined with the Institution of Civil Engineers to erect a plaque to commemorate William Bald, the pioneering 19th century cartographer, surveyor and civil engineer - please see the William Bald Commemoration Plaque page.

In 2013, Burntisland Heritage Trust was given permission to digitally copy the Erskine Church's older Kirk Session records and all of its newsletters to add to the Trust's local collections. Please click here for full details.

The Trust's activities include the search for King Charles I's baggage ferry, the 'Blessing', which sank off Burntisland in 1633 - please click here for the search timeline from 1997 to date.

Please click here to see a summary of all the Trust's activities and associated time line from 1993 to 2019.

Appeal for Old Photos

Burntisland Heritage Trust are always on the lookout for old Burntisland photos - in particular interesting photos from family archives, which might be of workplaces, buildings, streets, shops, sports, people, etc. Please (or use contact page) if you can help.


    Webpage by Iain Sommerville; Help on bookmarking this page.