The Kippen Girls


Today I am sharing a little taster from my book “Watching the Daisies – Life Lessons on the Importance of Slow”

Today’ taster travels to Scotland, where I spent most of my childhood, apart from annual holidays to my parents’ homeland in  Donegal, Ireland, which I am happy to now call my permanent home.


“On March 1954, my parents married and moved to Callander, a pretty Perthshire town known as “The Gateway to the Highlands”.  I was born in a castle called Airthrey Castle, then a maternity hospital located near Bridge of Allan, Stirlingshire.


Callander – The Gateway to the Highlands


In 1956, we settled in the quaint village of Kippen, around ten miles from our previous home.  Kippen was set on a hillside, with scenic views over a flat area  of land known as The Carse, also home to the meandering River Forth.  The Grampian Mountains could be seen in the distance.  Our new home had a stunning backdrop, the steep Gargunnock and Fintry hills, which have a similar topography to Sligo’s Ben Bulbin.


Kippen’s Main Street

The main street provided villagers with three grocers shops, a dressmaker’s, a post office, two garages and a hotel called The Cross Keys.  We lived on Fore Road, home to the Church of Scotland, an antique shop and another hotel – The Crown.  Our house was called Beech Cottage and was situated right next to the village hall.


The Church of Scotland

Kippen was a popular tourist destination, not least because it was home to the world’s largest vine, housed in four greenhouses.  The vineyard sadly closed in 1964, but I can still remember visiting the spot, at the far end of the Main Street.”

My mother died in 1970, and my family eventually left Kippen for Scotland’s capital city -Edinburgh. However, I still make a point of visiting this lovely village when I return to Scotland.  These photographs were taken in August 2016.

I eventually became a natural medicine’s therapist and teacher, and taught self healing classes for Stirling University’s Open Studies and Summer Schools from 1993 till 1999. The venue for these classes was Airthrey Castle – the place of my birth!

My sisters and I are still known as “The Kippen Girls.”

Brigid P. Gallagher is a retired natural medicines therapist, passionate organic gardener and author of “Watching the Daisies- Life lessons on the Importance of Slow,” a holistic memoir dedicated to the art of mindfulness and healing from debilitating illness.

Categories: Scotland

Tagged as: , , ,


  1. Im loving your book Brigid. I thought I would be finished by the end of this week, but I made myself slow down so it doesn’t end. I have loved traveling vicariously through you…and hearing about all the healing modalities. 😀❤

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s