District News

Ancrum

WRI: At the AGM, the new committee was elected – Mrs Allan, president; Mrs Butler, vice-president; Mrs Williamson, secretary; Mrs Goodfellow, treasurer; Mrs Law, minutes secretary; Mrs Sinton, press secretary; Mrs Douglas, Mrs McDonald, Mrs Munro and Mrs Wight. The cups were then presented – most points – Mrs Butler; runner-up, Mrs Sinton; Cookery Cup, Mrs Butler; handicrafts, Mrs Dorricott and Mrs Nock. Competitions – baby’s cardigan – 1, Mrs Douglas; 2, Mrs Sinton; 3, Mrs Turnbull; 4, Mrs Dorricott; traybake – 1, Mrs Goodfellow; 2, Mrs Turnbull; 3, Mrs Smail. The Christmas party is on Wednesday. Competitions – best-wrapped parcel and assorted marzipan fruits (boxed).

Caddonfoot

CHURCH: At Caddonfoot Church’s service last Sunday, the first in Advent, minister Marion Dodd’s timing was perfect – she brought a clock and gong to entertain the children, with a message for the adults too. The lessons were read by Jim Hayes. A Christmas newsletter is being produced and it is hoped to have it available on Sunday for distribution by the outreach group and elders. December 16 is Gift Sunday and members are encouraged to bring an envelope containing a financial donation to the Borders Children’s Charity.At the end of the service, with the Christmas tree in place, there will be sherry and mince pies to complement tea and coffee. The family Christmas service is on December 23 with the watchnight service at 11pm the following day, both conducted by the Reverend Dodd. There is also an invitation to attend Sing a Song of Christmas, organised by the Galashiels Fellowship of Churches in Old Parish and St Paul’s Church tonight (6.30-7.30pm).

Earlston

Parish Church: The women’s group Christmas meal is tomorrow at The Coffee Shop (7pm). Contact Pauline (848167) for more details. Sunday’s Advent service starts at 10.15am, followed by a “Time to Remember” service at 2.30pm. Both will be conducted by the Reverend Julie Woods. A children’s Christmas service is scheduled for December 16th at 10.15am.

Camera Club: Members met last Wednesday night for a talk by David Kilpatrick. He then went on to judge the competition – “sticks and stones” – projected images – 1, Helen Pugh-Cook; 2, Barbara Greer; 3, Linsey Anderson; prints – 1 and 2, Curtis Welsh; 3, Cameron Steel. The next meeting will be on Wednesday in Earlston primary school lounge at 7.30pm.Speaker will be Jim Gibson and the competition is entitled “action”.

WEDNESDAY CLUB: The past month has been busy for members. The annual coffee morning in Hanover Close raised £379 and then there was a shopping trip to Dobbies. At a meeting in the church hall, Curtis Welsh showed slides of this year’s Earlston Civic Week and flower show. He also had slides from John Weatherly’s collection of railway lines in the Borders.Competition – pretty ear-rings – 1, Mary Cook; 2, Mary Scott; 3, Margaret Campbell. The Christmas party was held yesterday and first meeting of 2013 is on January 16 when the competition will be for a favourite Christmas card.

WRI: Members had great fun with Joyce Luby from Allanton WRI helping them to make a Christmas decoration. Linda Riddell won first prize for her Christmas decoration, with Heather Smith and Susan Donaldson second and third respectively. The jar of mincemeat competition honours went to Heather Smith, with Margaret Miller runner-up. The next meeting is a Christmas night at 7.30pm in Hanover on December 13.

Eckford

CAROLS: A carol service will be held in the village hall at 6.30pm on December 21, followed by mulled wine and nibbles.

Ettrickbridge

PARTY: December 15 (8pm-midnight) sees the village Christmas party. Tickets available from Linda on 01750 52257.

CAROLS: Carols with Selkirk Silver Band takes place in the hall on December 17 at 7.15pm. Tickets from 01750 52257.

WRI: Paramedic Alan McGhee gave a talk on his career and involvement with the Tweed Valley Mountain Rescue service at the latest meeting. He then went on to demonstrate basic life support and all the members present learned how to carry out CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation). Competition – home-made facemask – 1, Alison Blackadder.The next meeting is a Christmas taste and try night on December 12.

Fountainhall

WRI: The Christmas night out will be in the Cloudhouse Café, Stow, on December 12 (7 for 7.30pm). November competitions – flowers in an egg cup – 1, A. Mathison; 2, C. Sinclair; candle holder – 1, D. Small; 2, A. Mathison. The next meeting after the Christmas night out is on January 16.

Galashiels

Camera Club: Members were treated to a lecture from Neil Scott of the Edinburgh Photographic Society. His talk, “In My Mind’s Eye”, was based on how he sees an image at first, and then how he develops it into the finished product through a progression of ideas. He discussed and showed many of his images based on subjects that inspire him such as surrealism, minimalism, still life, people, landscapes and music. The club’s next meeting is the men v women competition on the theme of “buildings” which will be judged by Bill Hume from Kelso Camera Club.

Hawick

Bridge Club: November 26 – N/S – 1, P. Gilligan and M. Millar; 2, R. Francombe and V. Macpherson; 3, V. Johnstone and M. Miller; E/W – 1, S. White and J. Urquhart; 2, L. and T. Witten; 3, R. Goldie and M. McLeod. November 28 – 1 (equal), P. Gilligan and M. Millar, D. Usher and I. Wyze; 3, M. Tuson and K. Auckland; 4, M. and H. Dooley.

Camera Club: John Thomas from St Boswells, a trustee of the John Muir Trust, presented an illustrated talk on the history, aims and current projects of the trust; a charitable organisation dedicated to the protection of unspoiled wild places within the United Kingdom. John Muir was born in Dunbar in 1838 and emigrated to America with his parents. He was instrumental in the establishment of a national Park in Yosemite Valley, California. The meeting next Thursday will be a practical night attempting to make black and white images.

Film AND Video Group: At the latest meeting, member Ann Singleton presented her digital slideshow about a cruise on the MV Balmoral last April in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster. Accompanying Ann was fellow cruise passenger Anne Coburn, also from Hawick, who contributed her own pictures and commentary throughout the show. The photographs showed many of the cruise passengers – some were related to those on the doomed ship – dressed in period costume. Tuesday’s meeting will be a change to the syllabus programme – it is now planned to show a professionally-made DVD of the Titanic memorial trip.

ROTARY: Visitor Howard Walker attended the latest meeting to share in his father Jim’s talk, illustrated by photographs, on a six-week visit to North America in August/September this year. After sailing from Southampton to New York on the Queen Mary 2, Jim, his wife Rosalyn and son Howard went to the top of the Rockefeller Tower, visited Times Square and Wall Street. Travelling by train to Toronto, they went to the Niagara Falls and had a light aircraft flight over the Great Lakes before visiting Chicago. They then went by train across Canada. At Seattle they boarded a cruise ship and went by Vancouver to Alaska via the Inside Passage where one of the highlights was seeing various types of whale close-up. They returned across the States by train and car and flew back to the UK.

Heiton

WRI: A birthday meal, attended by 22 members, was held at the Teviot Smokery to celebrate the rural’s 84th birthday. The annual competitions’ salver was jointly won by Lesley Abernethy and Gill Harrop. Third was Norma Wright. The next meeting is the Christmas party on December 12. Competition – small Christmas table decoration with candle.

Innerleithen

CAROLS: A carol service will be held at 5pm in Innerleithen Church on Sunday.

Jedburgh

HISTORICAL SOCIETY: Chris Veitch dipped into his treasure chest of drawings, photographs and documents at the society’s latest meeting to present members with illustrated episodes from the life of the burgh, and of the Veitch family of Inchbonny in particular. Posters of visiting circuses followed drawings of the Veitch family and burgh worthies, as well as of French prisoners of war at the beginning of the 19th century. Early photographs of HMS Roxburghshire, taken by James Veitch, a provost of Jedburgh, were also shown. The 1903 centennial celebrations of the meeting between William Wordsworth and Sir Walter Scott in Jedburgh were another highlight of the presentation. The next meeting of the society is on December 13 at 7.30pm in the British Legion when John Wood will speak about John Younger of St Boswells. His talk is entitled “Robinson Crusoe Untravelled”.

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS: Jedburgh Community Council is grateful to all those who have supported the Christmas lights appeal this year through the fundraising efforts such as the coffee morning and quiz sheets. Thanks are also due to those who have bought a “gift” or “memory” light.

Kelso

BIRD SHOW: Kelso Ornithological Society’s annual open show will be held in the Tait Hall on Saturday. Exhibitors from as far away as Aberdeen, Stranraer and the English Midlands will be in attendance.In addition to cage birds such as canaries, finches, budgies and parrots, pigeon and poultry fanciers will be showing their stock. The birds will be brought by their owners to the show hall before 9am and judging takes place throughout the morning. The hall is open to the public from 1-3.30pm. The show committee and members are drawn from Kelso and the surrounding area, with some notable breeders and exhibitors in their ranks – the show partnership of Bob Purdie and Bob Leslie compete regularly and successfully in major British shows as far south as Reading and also in Europe at the annual World Show with their stud of Fife canaries. John Connor, a relative newcomer to the hobby, won best in show with the same breed at the Scottish National, held at the Royal Highland Show ground in 2009. George Nairn is regarded as one of the finest breeders of native finches and hybrids in Britain, while Bobby Rae, society president, bred and showed exotic foreign birds for well over 50 years before giving up only recently and achieved the first successful British captive breeding of a south-east Asian parrot.

Friends of Kelso Museum: The fourth and final talk in the November series was held last Wednesday when Dr Lindsay Lennie discussed “Historic Scottish shopfronts”, of which Kelso has several.

BRIDGE CLUB: November 28 – Abbey Salver 4 – N/S – 1, Archie Stewart and Evelyn Erskine; 2, Sheena McPherson and Sheila Urquhart; 3, David Harris-Burland and Ruth Mackay; E/W – 1, John and Marian Miller; 2, Bob Stevenson and Annie Mitchell; 3 (equal), Dominic and Diana Alkin, Jim and Mary Stone. November 29 – Calchou Cup 6 – N/S – 1, Alison Darling and Mary Logan; 2, John and Marian Miller; 3, Dominic and Diana Alkin; E/W – 1, Gerry Eglington and Jon Bridger; 2, David Harris-Burland and Sheila Urquhart; 3, Lee Leeson and Bob Stevenson.

QUILTERS: The next meeting of Abbey Quilters is on Tuesday at 7pm in Abbey Row Centre. As this is the Christmas meeting, members are asked to bring along a £5 Santa’s Sack quilting-related gift, wrapped as well as a fat quarter of fabric, also gift wrapped. For further information, contact Rineke Sangster (01573 229414).

EMBROIDERERS: The next meeting of Kelso Embroiderers’ Guild will be the Christmas party at noon on Tuesday. Members are asked to bring along a plate of eats, either savoury or sweet. For further information, contact Rineke Sangster (01573 229414).

FAIR: See Yetholm section.

DISCo: See Yetholm section.

Langholm

Probus Club: Fire officer Ian Campbell told how the Dumfries and Galloway fire and rescue service protected the 6,500 square kilometres and 148,000 people living in the region with 335 firefighters, of which 223 are retained. There are 20 fire tenders, based in 17 stations, all aided by 44 fire control and support staff. The main duty of the service was to prevent house fires, where often children were most at risk. The risks are amplified during the Christmas festivities with decorations, Christmas trees, fairy lights, wrapping paper and candles.

Art and craft: There was an excellent turnout at the preview evening of the Muckle Toon art and craft weekend in the gallery at the town hall. There were exhibits of woodwork, photographs, paintings, textiles, jewellery and hand-made gifts.

FaIr: The public were out in force at the Christmas fair in the Buccleuch Centre. There were more than 20 stalls, including hand-made chocolates, holly wreaths and plants, cushions, mince pies and shortbread, jams, hand-made Christmas gifts and cards, jewellery, photographs and paintings, along with make-up demonstrations and tips.

Melrose

COFFEE MORNING: A coffee morning and raffle run by Judi Morton at Kaeside on Saturday raised £420 for Riders for Health, a social enterprise which manages more than 1,400 motorcycles, ambulances and other four-wheel vehicles used for health care in seven countries in Africa.

Trimontium: At the quarterly meeting of Trimontium Trustees last week it was reported that the launch of the Curle centenary book could not take place before Christmas because the material was still at the National Museums’ printers. It was agreed that the trust office bearers would meet their historical association counterparts to discuss the possibilities and organisation of an archaeological investigation at Old Melrose.

CHURCH: December Life & Work and the church magazine available for collection; Traidcraft stall in operation after Advent services; tomorrow – 7pm, Darnick carol service; Saturday – Trinity Centre Christmas fair, 10am-noon; Sunday – services at 9.30am (Bowden) and 11am Melrose); 2.30pm, music society, Under the Greenwood Tree; 7.30pm, Eildon Singers’ Selkirk concert; December 16 – Eildon Singers’ Melrose concert, 7.30pm.

CAROLS: The Borders branch of CLIC Sargent, a charity that helps children with cancer and their families, is putting on a carol concert tomorrow (7pm) in Melrose Parish Church, featuring the school choirs of Melrose primary and St Mary’s, together with other young performers.

LITERARY SOCIETY: As early as 1933, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, author of Sunset Song, thought the Bible was “slipping away”, belonging to a time that Scots now had “no knowing of”. At last week’s meeting, honorary president, Professor Ian Campbell of Edinburgh, showed how, historically, the Bible was intrinsic to Scottish society, and how a knowledge of the Bible still added an extra dimension to the works of Burns, Scott and Galt, and other Scottish writers. The society’s next meeting on Tuesday (7.30pm) will be a celebration of the works of Orkney poet George Mackay Brown.

Morebattle

Guild: The guild’s 125th anniversary was celebrated at the Wauchope Hall, Yetholm. Margaret Lees welcomed everyone and the evening started with a drama by Olive, June, Helen, Catherine, Susan and Graeme. Margaret then introduced Iain White, general secretary of the Women’s Guild, who gave an excellent talk. After supper the cake was cut by Ruth Tokely, Dot Lee, Helen Bell and Jenny Flannigan. Bill Thomson proposed the vote of thanks.

WRI: The next meeting is on Wednesday in the institute at 7.15pm when there will be demonstrations with Helen Cessford, Marian Dumma, Julie Johnstone and Janette Stenhouse.

Lights: The Christmas tree lights will be switched on by the Games Queen on December 14. This will be followed by refreshments in the institute.

Folk Night: A folk night was held in the Templehall when a good crowd enjoyed the music supplied by Kelso Folk Club. During the break the grand bottle draw was held when 49 bottles were drawn. Proceeds went to the flower show and village hall funds.

FAIR: See Yetholm section.

DISCo: See Yetholm section.

Newcastleton

Coffee morning: A coffee morning run by Liddesdale Ladies Amenities Group (LLAG) in the village hall raised £700. The money will go towards the electricity costs and maintenance of the village Christmas lights which are to be switched on by Common Riding representatives on Saturday. LLAG will be handing out mince pies and mulled wine.

Newtown

Bazaar: The church’s Christmas bazaar held on November 24 raised £1534.46.

LIGHTS: Long-term village resident Ian Renton pressed the switch to illuminate the Christmas lights last Sunday. The focal point, a Christmas tree, benefits from additional lighting paid for through community council fundraising. The tree, chosen and part-paid for by Ross Allen of Milestone Garden and Leisure, was put up through the combined efforts of village stalwarts, Milestone staff and a team of Borders College students organised by Nigel Gibb. The festive spirit continued with carol singing accompanied by St Boswells Brass Band, followed by a supper and refreshments in the Community Wing. For the first time, the lights include a smaller Christmas tree inside the telephone kiosk in Sprouston Road. The kiosk, recently purchased by the community council, will be spruced up with fresh paint in 2013. Plans for its use include tourist and village information, but people with other suggestions should get in touch with a community councillor or contact a member of Newtown in Bloom.

Oxnam

FAIR: A Christmas fair was held in Oxnam Hall on November 24, organised by Val Hunter for the church. The total sum raised was £716 – the gift tables made £136, the raffle £126 and cake stall £186.

Selkirk

Monday Club: Hilary Bell returns for the Christmas party at 2pm on Monday in St Joseph’s Church hall. The next meeting is on January 7.

Antiquarian Society: The December meeting will be held on Wednesday at 7.30pm in Selkirk Parish Church Hall. Rachel Hosker, of Scottish Borders Council’s archives department, will present a talk entitled “Harrison’s Photo Album and Other Treasures”. Details of the society’s syllabus are available at www.selkirkshireantiquariansociety.co.uk.

St Mary’s

WRI: Members held a whist drive and raffle in aid of rural funds, raising £112. Results – ladies – 1, May Tinlin; 2, Alison Brown; 3, Jenny Oldfield; booby, Helen Hogg. Gents – 1, Jimmy Irving; 2, Jock Hedley; 3, Derek Brown; booby, Drew Hogg. The next meeting is on Tuesday when Anne Cleland will give a talk on skincare products. Competitions – gift-wrapped parcel and three truffles.

Stow

KEEPING FIT: Galawater Health and Fitness Club’s last class before Christmas will be on December 12. Classes resume again in the Town Hall (1-2pm) on January 9.

Westruther

FAIR: Westruther Village Hall’s fundraising Christmas fair will be held tomorrow at 7pm.

Yarrowford

WRI: A large turnout enjoyed a talk and demonstration of carding and spinning by member Hannah Young, who is also a member of the Tweed Guild of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers. The raffle was won by Eileen Davidson who also headed the competition for three pieces of traybake. Linda Bradshaw was runner-up. The next meeting is the Christmas meal.

Yetholm

GUILD: The guild celebrated its birthday with a party at which Church of Scotland guild secretary Ian Whyte was the special guest.He gave a pictorial presentation of world events over 125 years.This included a musical interlude and thereafter a buffet prepared by Guild members was enjoyed.

WHIST: The Youth Hall will be hosting a Christmas whist drive on Tuesday at 7.30pm.

MAGIC: The magic and caberet Show in the Wauchope Hall was enjoyed by both young and old. Organised as a fundraiser by community councillors, the numbers present were disappointing. However, it was hoped that the next event – a Chistmas shopping day in the Border Hotel – would redress the balance.

TREES: Yetholm Community Council has arranged Christmas trees for the two villages. A change this year sees the Kirk Yetholm tree on the lower green and the general consensus is that this is more prominent.

HISTORY SOCIETY: A programme of activities for 2013 prepared by the history and archaeological society is available from committee members. Subscriptions are due – new members welcome.

FAIR: A Christmas fair will be held on Saturday (10.30am-noon) in the Youth Hall. Donations of bottles, DVDs and raffle prizes are still needed and can be dropped off at the Youth Hall between 4-6pm tomorrow or after 9am on Saturday.

DISCO: A Christmas disco party for young people will be held on December 14 at the Youth Hall. Running from 7.30-10pm, tickets available from Seasons, Kelso; Morebattle Village Shop; Yetholm Village Shop; and Yetholm and Morebattle primary schools.