A unique photographic exhibition charting the proud decline of an historic Fife factory is being held at The Design Exchange on the top floor of Ocean Terminal from 18th September to the 18th October.
Edinburgh photographer Jim Mackintosh recorded the final days of the Well Brae factory in Falkland, capturing not just the industrial heritage of the building and the equipment, but the spirit of the men and women who work there.
The relocation of paper bag making operations by Smith Anderson from Falkland to Kirkcaldy brought manufacturing to an end on a site that had seen continuous production since the 1890s. The transfer of work to a more modern and efficient site means that the workforce will continue to be employed, but the building and its contents, for long a Falkland landmark will be gone forever.
Jim Mackintosh said: ‘I had access to the site in its final months and tried to capture not just the drama and richness of the buildings and the machinery, but something of the spirit of the place. And the people too, for this is a site that has been the workplace for generations of skilled men and women who lived out much of their lives within these walls.
‘Within the current workforce there are people with decades of service. A building with such a rich architectural heritage deserves to be recorded before the bulldozers arrive. But the people are what made the building come alive and they are just as important a part of the exhibition.
‘Scotland’s economy is always developing as manufacturing becomes increasingly sophisticated, and factories like Well Brae are slipping into the past. But these are the factories where millions of people lived their lives, provided for their families, met their life’s love, laughed and cried. They are places which echo with stories.’