THOMAS FORRET, sometimes written as Forrest, came from a well-connected family from Logie near Cupar in Fife.

His father, Thomas, had worked for James IV as his master stabler.

Following an early education, and thanks to the patronage of a 'rich lady,' Forret was sent to Köln (Cologne) to study, and when he returned home became a canon at Inchcolm monastery in the Firth of Forth.

While there, the monks became restless, so to distract them, the abbot gave them the works of Augustine. While reading them, many began to think differently.

Forret later said: "O, happy and blessed was that book by which I came to the knowledge of the truth."

After a time, Forret became minister at Dollar where he preached the Gospels and Epistles every Sunday, which had been the reserve of the Black or Grey Friars.

Being put out by this new way of preaching, the friars complained to the Bishop of Dunkeld George Crichton, denouncing him as a heretic.

They also complained that the Scriptures were being read by Forret 'to the vulgar people in English'.

The Bishop was angry not only about the Sunday preaching, but also that dues of a cow and the 'uppermost cloth' were not being collected when a parishioner died.

He informed Forret that others would expect the same and that was not going to happen. Eventually, he permitted Forret to preach on a Sunday but only one good Epistle or one good Gospel.

In reply, Forret asked him to point out the bad ones but the Bishop replied he 'never knew what the Old and New Testament was'.

Throughout his time at Dollar, Forret taught his parishioners the Ten Commandments, wrote a short catechism for them, and always carried a piece of bread and cheese in his sleeve to give to the poor.

He pretty much kept out of trouble with the bishops until around February 1538 or 1539 when he and four others were called before David Beaton, the Bishop of St Andrews; Gavin Dunbar, Bishop of Glasgow; and the Bishop of Dunblane William Chisholm, accused of being a heretic and a 'teacher of heresy'.

He and the others had attended the wedding of Thomas Locklaw, the last Catholic priest of Tullibody, and had 'eaten flesh in Lent' at the wedding.

On February 28, 1539, although some sources cite 1538, while others say 1540, he and the other four were burned at the stake at Castle Hill in Edinburgh.

A memorial to Forret lies by Vicar's Bridge.