A group of creative residents at Balhousie Monkbarns care home have been penning a series of nostalgic poems about their hometown to celebrate the 700th anniversary of the Declaration of Arbroath this year.

The writing project, called ‘Dedication to Arbroath’, has been led by Activities Coordinator Kirsty Taylor who has been supporting the myth-busting residents to reminisce and share memories of their ‘braw wee toon’.

The poetry writing has been a welcome focus for the home’s residents during lockdown where those involved have really got their creative juices flowing.

The first poem, produced by the Fraser lounge, talks of many of the places and events Arbroath is famous for, from ‘oor smokies’ to the Queen’s visit and a stolen boat called ‘Oor Girl Jean’.

The Abbey lounge’s poem is called ‘Arbroath of Yesteryear’ and tells the stories of pageants to celebrate the Declaration of Arbroath which was signed at the town’s Abbey, the same ‘Abbey’ the residents’ lounge is named after.

The Seaview lounge wrote about Arbroath being a ‘Heyday Holiday Hotspot’ with the town’s beautiful beach, sunshine, endless ice-creams, outdoor pool and ‘The Switchies’ celebrated.

The final poem in the series, from the home’s Scott lounge, featured the Bell Rock Lighthouse, ‘the auldest surviving rock lighthouse in Britain, or so it is written.’

Kirsty said the residents have thoroughly enjoyed putting pen to paper for the project. She said:

“It has been amazing listening to our residents share their stories and recollections of days gone by in their home town and we are delighted to be able to share their poems with the people of Arbroath in this special anniversary year. We hope people will enjoy reading the poems as much as our residents enjoyed writing them.”