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Authority record

Bridge of Allan Primary School

  • ED/LO1
  • Corporate body
  • 1844 -

Bridge of Allan Free Church School opened in 1844 in a cottage in Market Street. A new public school was built in Union Street in 1876. Bridge of Allan Primary School opened in 1965 and still operates to this date.

Brown, Cecilia, fl 1717 – 1724

  • P0054
  • Person
  • fl 1717 – 1724

Brother is Alexander Bayne. Daughter of John Bayne. Married William Gibson in 1724.

Bruce, Robert, 1795 – 1864, Member of Parliament

  • P0090
  • Person
  • 1795 – 1864

Bruce’s ancestors had owned the Kennet estate since the mid-sixteenth century. His great-grandfather, Alexander Bruce, married in 1714 Mary Balfour, younger sister of Robert, 5th Lord Balfour of Burleigh, a convicted murderer who had escaped from custody in 1709 by disguising himself in his sister’s clothes. Balfour came out for the Pretender in the ’15, was attainted and died without issue in 1757. Mary Bruce died the following year and her sister Margaret died unmarried in 1769 when, but for the attainder, Alexander Bruce’s son Robert (Lord Kennet SCJ) would have succeeded her as Lord Balfour of Burleigh. His only surviving son Alexander was sometime a merchant in China before he inherited Kennet in 1785. On his death in 1808 his son Robert, the subject of this biography, became laird of Kennet at the age of 12. Bruce’s grandfather, Lord Kennet, had married a sister of the military hero, Sir Ralph Abercromby† (1734-1801) of Tullibody, whose widow was created Baroness Abercromby. Her son, George Abercromby, who succeeded her in the peerage in 1821, may have had some responsibility for Bruce, his second cousin, during his minority. Bruce’s brief military career included service at Waterloo, where he was wounded. At the general election of 1820 he was returned unopposed for Clackmannanshire on Abercromby’s interest, as a locum for Abercomby’s only son, a minor.

He gave general support to Lord Liverpool’s administration, but occasionally took an independent line. He voted against economies in revenue collection, 4 July 1820, and in defence of ministers’ conduct towards Queen Caroline, 6 Feb. 1821. He was one of the Scottish county Members who divided for repeal of the additional malt duty, 21 Mar., and he stood his ground when government exerted themselves to defeat the repeal bill, 3 Apr. 1821. He voted against the disfranchisement of ordnance officials, 12 Apr., and parliamentary reform, 9, 10 May 1821. He divided against the opposition’s call for more extensive tax reductions, 21 Feb., but voted for admiralty economies, 1 Mar., and a cut in the army estimates, 20 Mar. 1822. He voted against abolition of one of the joint-postmasterships, 13 Mar., and inquiry into the lord advocate’s dealings with the Scottish press, 25 June 1822. He sided with government against repeal of the assessed taxes, 10, 18 Mar., and of the Foreign Enlistment Act, 16 Apr., and against Scottish parliamentary reform, 2 June, and inquiry into the currency, 12 June 1823. He voted against the production of information on the Dublin Orange theatre riot, 24 Mar., but was one of the anti-Catholics (he had voted against relief, 28 Feb. 1821, 30 Apr. 1822) who divided with opposition to secure an investigation of the prosecution of the miscreants, 22 Apr. 1823. He voted against reform of Edinburgh’s representation, 26 Feb. 1824. He presented constituency petitions against the duty on notaries’ licences, 5 Apr., for the abolition of slavery, 11 May, and against the beer bill, 13 May 1824.

In 1823 Bruce sought an interview with Lord Liverpool to press his claim to the forfeited Balfour peerage in view of government’s plans to restore the lineal descendants of attainted peers to their ancestors’ honours. He had petitioned the king on this during his visit to Scotland in August 1822:

Mine is a case of peculiar aggravated hardship ... Both Lord Melville and the lord advocate are of opinion that it is a singular case ... and that it will by no means interfere with the claim of any other collateral branch.

He got no satisfaction, and when government introduced bills to reverse the attainders of five peers, 14 June 1824, he complained in the House of the preference given to lineal over collateral descendants:

He yielded to no man in loyalty to the House of Hanover, and most painfully did he feel the distinction by which he suffered on the present occasion. Though the blood from which he was collaterally descended from ... [Lord Balfour] was pure and untainted, yet still was he, and those who were to succeed him, excluded from the royal grace.
Many of his audience evidently sympathized with him, but the home secretary Peel stated that as an indiscriminate reversal of all attainders was impracticable, ministers had felt obliged to select only those which were free from uncertainty over the legitimacy of the original patent. Soon afterwards Bruce sold his army commission and vacated his seat for Abercromby’s son.

In 1832 and 1835 he unsuccessfully contested the reformed constituency of Clackmannan and Kinross as a Conservative. He was thought to have a ‘good chance’ of success in 1837, but did not stand. In 1841, as a member of the committee of the general assembly of the Church of Scotland, he wrote to Peel of his alarm at the growing schism within the church and pledged his support for any ‘healing measure’ which recognized the principle of non-intrusion. The following year, when vainly seeking to have his brother Hugh made sheriff of Renfrewshire, he told Peel that he was only deterred from challenging the Liberal candidate for Clackmannan and Kinross at the impending by-election ‘by the conviction, that any Conservative could not succeed, from the nature of the constituency, and number of towns and villages opposed to the agricultural interest’.

In 1860 Bruce, having accidentally discovered the patent of the Balfour peerage in a chest at Kennet, petitioned Queen Victoria on his claim to the titles of Lord Balfour of Burleigh and Lord Kilwinning. The petition was referred to the Lords’ committee of privileges in 1861, when his claim to the Balfour peerage was disputed by Francis Walter Balfour of Fernie, a descendant of a younger son of the 3rd Lord Balfour. Nothing had been decided by the time of Bruce’s death in August 1864. The following year his only son, Alexander Hugh Bruce, a minor (Bruce had been 54 when he was born) renewed the claim. His right to the Balfour peerage was allowed, 23 July 1868, but he was ruled not to have made out his case regarding the Kilwinning title, which had been challenged by Lord Eglinton in 1863. He was created Lord Balfour of Burleigh by private Act, 19 Mar. 1869

Buchanan Parish

  • PR/BU
  • Corporate body
  • 1845 - 1975

Prior to 1845, most local administration was provided by the kirk session of the parish. Details of this may be found in the minutes and accounts of the ecclesiastical parish at CH2/606. In 1845 the Poor Law (Scotland) Act set up parochial boards in each ecclesiastical parish in Scotland with a Board of Supervision established in Edinburgh to oversee the administration or relief for the poor. This produced a whole new series of records related to the provision of help for those in need. As well as this function, the parish was also responsible for other aspects of local administration such as recreation grounds, refuse collection and lighting. After 1925, care of local burial grounds was transferred to the parish authorities and at this time, all existing pre-1925 lair and burial records were given over to the care of the parish council. The Local Government (Scotland) Act of 1894 replaced the parochial boards with parish councils although the system of administration remained broadly the same. The 1929 Local Government (Scotland) Act transferred the functions of the parish councils to the district councils of the local county council. Buchanan Parish fell under the jurisdiction of Stirling Western No 1 District Council. In 1948, all provision for the poor became the responsibility of the National Assistance Board with the establishment of the Welfare State in that year.

Buchanan Primary School

  • ED/BU1
  • Corporate body
  • c. 1860 -

Buchanan Primary School has been in operation since 1860 and continued until 2018 when it was temporarily closed due to the last pupils on the small school roll transferring to nearby Drymen Primary. In April 1912, new buildings were opened across from the original schoolhouse as the school became a “Higher Grade School” where additional space allowed for more practical activities to be taught. This building became the modern Primary School, with extensions in 1965 and 1995, and the original schoolhouse was converted into holiday accommodation.

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