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Dunfermline Children's Gala 1936

A record of the town's annual festival

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The clip opens with a panning shot of seated young children enjoying food and drink. Games ensue, including a blind race (girls), piggy back fights (boys), and tug of war (girls). The children then sit at a trestle table and enjoy bottled fizzy drinks, served by uniformed cooks. There is then a close up of two young boys in shorts and shirts, later alongside young adults, perhaps parents. More games ensue, including running in groups of four, and ring-a-ring-a-roses - an important local adult couple join in this game. There is a girl's race, with a false start, after which the girls have to find their shoes which are scattered over the course, put them on, and complete the race. Some young children then enjoy a paddle in the pool, with a number of them getting fascinated by the camera! There is finally a close up shot of a baby dressed in a bonnet sitting on the ground with a cup, before the clip finishes with a shot of the Carnegie Memorial.

Questions & Activities


  • Why are fair and gala days important?
  • What happens at a fair/gala day?
  • Have you been to a fair day/gala - what did you see?
  • Why is the fair day so important to the town?
  • What games can you see?


Social Studies / History: Research the traditions of fairs, carnivals and gala days - why are they important to the community and society?

History / English / Social Studies: Research your own local gala/fair day and its history and origins.

Social Studies: Note the games you see and what the children are doing for fun. Compare this to what children would do today. Create your own game for the gala day.

Art and Design: What is the purpose of role-play and dressing up? Design your own costumes for your school to take part in your local fair.

Media Studies: Make a film of your local fair/gala.

English: Produce a piece of creative writing about your day at the fair/gala.

History: Research how the practice of a cavalcade of floats originiated?

Media Studies / History: Compare and contrast this film with Ferry Fair, Bo'ness Fair and Elgin Charcity Day. What are the differences and what are the similarities?

English: Find out who organises the event and interview them.

Business / Modern Studies: Invent your own new tradition.

Clip Details

Record Id 007-000-002-189-C
Resource Rights Holder National Library of Scotland
Project Ref 1363
Date 1936
Genre Local Topical
School Subject Social Studies, English, Media Studies, History, Art and Design, Modern Studies
Subject Matter Business
Who Regal Cinema (sponsor)
Where Dunfermline
Event Fair Day
Attributes Black and White, Silent
Clip Length 5:38
Film Length 12:11