Wednesday, 31st May, 2023

We left Stirling today and headed for Dundee. We stopped at Perth to visit St Ninian's Episcopal Cathedral. By UK standards, this church is still in its infancy as it was built between 1848 and 1908. William Butterfield was the architect.

Looking from the west end

The flowers on the font were lovely!

The font and its canopy

When Mary and Joseph present the baby Jesus at the temple, Simeon (who has been promised by God that he will not die before seeing the Messiah) says "Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace".

The Nativity

Sts Margaret, Elizabeth and Catherine (see below for detail)

St Margaret of Scotland

St Elizabeth of Hungary

St Catherine of Siena

Detail of above: St Ninian, the Patron Saint of the Cathedral. He brought Christianity to Scotland in the 5th century.

The Pulpit dates from 1901.

One of the carvings on the font is St Patrick preaching to Irish princesses.

The Lectern

The Quire

The High Altar

Over the high altar, this ornately carved canopy, completed in 1911, features an intricate mosaic and carvings of saints.

St George and the Dragon

St Andrew

Statue of Bishop Wilkinson who died in 1907

The Bishop's Throne

The Canons' Stalls

The Choir Stalls

The ceiling

Flower in the Cathedral Garden

Our next stop was a brief visit to Morgan Academy where our friend Anne Geddes went to school and also our friend Clare Rush's mother. We were not permitted inside and were told we could only stay on the property for 10 minutes in order to take photos of the exterior. Not the warmest of welcomes! Amazingly, the building was almost totally destroyed by fire in 2001 but it was rebuilt and opened again 2004!

Next on our list was the Verdant Works Jute Museum. We learned that Dundee was the jute capital of the world. At one time, there were hundreds of mills which employed 40,000 people. Jute is a plant (grown in India) the fibres from which hessian is made. Hessian was used to make sacks, rope, nets, and the backing for carpets and linoleum. Women and children were employed more than men because their wages were cheaper.

These scales, set into the pavement just inside the gate, were used to weigh the carts of jute which were delivered from the ships which had carried it from India.

The Manager and his Private Secretary

The offce photocopier. Letters and invoices were written by hand with ink on paper. Before the ink had dried, the letter was placed in the press with a piece of very thin paper. Some of the ink was transferred to the paper, making a copy. Of course it was a mirror image but the paper was so thin that it could be read from the reverse side. Very clever but time consuming!

It's hard to see but this is what jute looks like.

This is jute as it was deleivered to the factory.

The fibres go through a number of processes: batching, softening, carding, drawing, roving, spinning, winding, beaming, weaving and finishing. There was a separate machine for each of these processes.

Some of the machines were operated for us. We could ony imagine the noise of many similar but much larger machines operating all at once

Working in Dundee was not good for one's health or longevity!

Children and adults were smaller than the general population as seen by the size of these desks in comparison to the teacher's desk at the right of the photo.

Our last visit of the day was to Discovery Point, the home of RSS Discovery. Launched in 1901, she was the last traditional wooden three-masted ship to be built in the United Kingdom. Her first mission was the British National Antarctic Expedition, carrying Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton on their first, and highly successful, journey to the Antarctic, known as the Discovery Expedition.

Salt Boxes: Throughout the ship there are letter box type slots cut in the sides which give access to the space between the inner and outer hulls and between the frames. These spaces were filled with rock salt. The salt would mix with any water that entered these areas, absorb the moisture and help to preserve the timber.

The Crew's Mess

Edward Wilson's Cabin (which later became the Hydrological Laboratory)

The Ward Room

The Chart Room

The seagulls were loving the fresh water!

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