Cumnock History Group


We are a constituted Voluntary Group of people of all ages and from all walks of life who share an interest in the history and heritage of Cumnock and how the past has influenced the present.

The group emerged as a result of the Memory Bank workshops for Raising the Bar - the archaeological dig focused on the site of the old Tup Inn on Lugar Street and also through discussions with members of Cumnock Living Memory Group, which was founded in the mid-nineties but had recently stopped meeting.

At a meeting in Cumnock Library, original members of CLMG felt the time had come to pass the torch on to a new generation of keen heritage enthusiasts. They also suggested the new name change and the group agreed to an organisational redevelopment.

The inaugural meeting of the Cumnock History Group took place on Thursday 21st November at the Baird Institute in Cumnock. A steering group was formed and the members at the meeting on the 16th January 2014 formally adopted the constitution and a Management Committee was elected.

Our first AGM was in February 2015.

Grants have been awarded from East Ayrshire Council of £840 and from the Minerals trust £2,000.

Our website has comprehensive coverage of all things Cumnock including photographs, films, documents, research articles and much more. Over the past year we have enjoyed over 9,400 unique user visits and a total of over 37,000 page visits from all over the world.

We have produced an Old Cumnock Heritage Trail Leaflet, which is distributed to local venues, shops and library.

We have also photographed, documented and transcribed over 700 headstones situated in the old cemetery at Barrhill Road and produced a memory stick containing all the information for sale on our website. There is a free version available without photos here:

We contributed many historical items to the recent childhood exhibition at the Baird Institute entitled "When We Are Young" and have recently successfully completed a street art project using images and the writings for the major 100th Centenary exhibition "Keir Hardie 100 Years On" at the same venue. More here:

Cumnock2016 Flickr Group was set up and features photos of everyday life in Cumnock to be a resource for the future and to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Cumnock becoming a police burgh in 1866. Galleries here:


Our paid membership currently stands at over 50 and associate membership at over 140.
Membership is £10 per annum.

Meetings & Events

The group meet the 3rd Thursday of each month in Cumnock. We invite guest speakers to present talks of interest to members. Past speakers have included:

  • Stuart Wilson of Kilmarnock & District History Group talked about Glenfield and Kennedy’s engineering works in Kilmarnock contribution to the war effort
  • Dane Love – History of the Square
  • Bobby Guthrie - Team Leader of the Improving New Cumnock group on the New Cumnock Heritage Trail and the Auld Kirkland Restoration Project
  • Louise Boreham – From Cumnock to Compton. A story of 2 potteries
  • Rev John Patterson Minister of the Old Parish Church, the Square, on the history of the Church
  • Bill Morton - Chairman and Membership Secretary of East Ayrshire Family History Society - Family History and EAFHS
  • Alan Cumming of Scottish Women’s Hospital – On the work of Scottish nurses in WW1 including Agnes Kerr Earl from Cumnock

We ran a series of double-page articles in the Cumnock Chonicle over 2014 featuring Keir Hardie and his family life, John Ballantine the Victorian photographer, the old cemetery and four articles on WW1 soldiers from Cumnock.


The Management Committee are:

Chair - Bobby Grierson,
Secretary - Kay McMeekin,
Vice Chair - Bill Anderson,
Treasurer - David Riggans
Maggie Goudie, Sadie McNair, Garry Savage

The committee meet on the 4th Thursday of each month in the Town Hall.


4 Gemmell Avenue, Cumnock, KA18 1EY


Bobby Grierson

Other information

Facebook groups

  • Cumnock History Group
  • Old Cumnock
  • Old Cumnock Chitchat
  • Old Cumnock School Photos
  • Cumnock Family History
  • Cumnock 2016

Flickr Groups

Sister Sites