Kite Aerial Photographs of Armadale

Part of Rosie's Community and Heritage Website

Kite Aerial Photography Index

(Power Sled 24 / Fuji DL-500, Fuji Superia 200. Red channel with colour removed. Compare with HERE )




Butter Barrel Kites

Courtesy of HAA: Playtime extract interviewee:

Mrs. Muir of Armadale

'Well, ma brother and his pals used to go down there [Recreation Ground] to fly their kites - I mean, they were home-made kites.  You went to the Co-operative and they opened the barrels of butter and you got the hoops from the barrels and you went to Davie Lundy's and you bought a cane, you see, and you had your string and then formed that and then pasted it over with brown paper.  You see, in those days if you got a message out the Co-operative - shoes and everything - it was all wrapped in lovely big sheets of brown paper, well that you kept to put covers on your books for school and if you had a really big sheet, well the boy got it to make his kite - well they talked about a draigon.  And you sat and made tails, you know, with the rolled-up pieces of paper and the string, so far apart and then they went down there to fly their kites - or draigon, as they talked about.

.....I mean, this was really good strong paper.  I mean, in these days when they made paste to paste it, it was flour paste you know, with boiling water - I don't know exactly how it was made....and, you see, it was shaped, the hoop, like this, it came off the butter barrel and then, you see,....the cane was in the middle, so the string went across to draw in the two ends of the hoop and round the cane and then it was bound round the bottom.  You could maybe make it with a wooden stick - actually, if your folk had enough money you could buy a dowelling rod -you know what I mean? - which was much stronger and lasted a lot longer than what the cane....  You know, sometimes the cane would split, when you had to groove it at the bottom, you see, to get the string, so that the string wouldnae come out, sometimes the cane would split.  .... Oh, it was a work of art, and when they were making this, you know, they were holding it up by the string to make sure it was balanced, you know, and sometimes if it was a wee bit down this side, you see, they'd put a wee bit paper - paste a wee bit paper to get it to sit even.'