Galashiels Academy’s S6 charities committee held a non-uniform day in aid of Borders General Hospital’s children’s ward. Handing over the £235 raised are pupils Lewis Cowburgh, Struan Clyne, Lauren Goudie and Emma Allan. Also pictured: Mark Smith, community link development officer, and children’s ward staff.
Christmas Day was brought in with the candlelit watchnight service conducted by the Reverend Elspeth Harley. The retiring collection was for Oasis, a charity which helps child refugees in this country.
At midnight, beadle George Wells rang the bell for the last time before retiring. As he re-entered the church, the congregation applauded and sang “Merry Christmas”. George, who was invited to ring the bell weekly by the late minister, Donald MacCuish, has been beadle for more than 50 years. The candles at the service were lit by Catherine and Georgie Bird; music played by Andy Bird, Anne Grieve and Fiona McDougal; James Macfarlane sang ‘Child in a Manger’ and the Bible reading was delivered by Atholl Innes. There was a joint Christmas Day service in Trinity Church. Next Sunday, 2017 will be brought in with the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at the usual time of 9.45am.
The service on Sunday, January 1, will be conducted by the Reverend Julie Rennick.
The next meeting is on Thursday, January 5, at 8pm in the church hall. The speaker will be Lorna Milligan on “Nursing in the Middle East”.
Members joined Eleanor and Allan Drummond, of Earlston Camera Club, on their journeys around Sri Lanka in an audio visual presentation entitled “Serendipity”. Narrated by Eleanor, a slide show of Allan’s images from their experiences on the island off the southern tip of India made for an entertaining and inspiring evening. The next meeting is on Wednesday, January 11, featuring a quiz. It is also the hand-in for images for the club’s next “General” competition. The club’s Christmas evening out is on Friday, January 6, at the Kingsknowes Hotel (7 for 7.30pm).
At blood-donor sessions on Sunday, December 18, and the following day, 307 volunteers offered to give blood and 273 donations were given. There were 11 new donors.
December 20 – 1 (equal), Kenneth Auckland & David King, Mary Millar & Patsy Gilligan; 3, Morag & Fraser Beaton. The club resumes on Tuesday, January 10.
December 21 – Abbey Salver – N/S – 1, Val Johnstone & Mary Millar; 2, Rena Stewart & Beth Stark; 3, Dominic & Diana Alkin; E/W – 1, Jean Henry & Myra Thomson; 2, Maureen Weightman & Jon Bridger; 3, Mary & Nigel Lindsay. December 22 – match-pointed pairs – 1, Jean McLaren & Ken Ross; 2, Dominic & Diana Alkin; 3 (equal), Bob Stevenson & Lee Leeson, Jean Henry & Myra Thomson; 5, Val Johnstone & Vanessa Wilson; 6, Rena Stewart & Maureen Weightman. Due to the Abbey Row Centre being closed for New Year, the next bridge club session will be held on Wednesday, January 11.
Abbey Quilters meet on Tuesday, January 10, at 7pm in Abbey Row Centre when Elaine Pettigrew will show things which can be created from fabric scraps. Members should remember to bring their mug and name badge.
The curtain has come down on the 2016 Muckle Toon pantomime, Beauty and the Beast, produced by Centre Stage Theatre. It ended as it had started – in front of a large, appreciative Buccleuch Centre audience. Centre Stage Theatre – a voluntary-run group for people of all ages – began 10 years ago and has produced more than 20 fully-staged shows involving hundreds of members. This year’s panto was directed and produced by Judith Johnson, Glen Cavers and Chris Jones. The principals were: Ma, Les Murray; Rose/Beauty, Zoe Little; Cappucine, Ann Barber; Malabelle, Sadie Cooper; Felix, Finlay Eagleson; Prince, Alistair Paisley; Beast, Stuart Tedham; Jacques, Luke Bell; Aimee, Emily Hislop; Remy, Amy Forsyth; Talking Clock, Josh Calvert; Table, Ashleigh Calvert; Lamp, Jenny Samuels; Chest of Drawers, Callum Jeffrey; Carpet, Michelle Sterling; Royal Page, Cameron Greer; Royal Page, Katie Jo Smith; Servant, Mellisa Park.
Marathon man Ben Smith, from Bristol, who completed two of his runs in this area in his 401 Challenge – running 401 marathons in 401 days – received the Helen Rollason award at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year event. The 34-year-old battled depression after being bullied, but recovered and ran the marathons to raise money for charities Kidscape and Stonewall. A number of Muckle Toon Joggers ran with Ben.
The Muckle Toon Whisky Run will take place on New Year’s Day. The fastest time last year was recorded by Andy Render of Annan, who completed the eight-and-a-half-mile course in 54 minutes, 56 seconds. For more details, including entries, telephone Charlie Graham on 01387 381224.
Channelkirk and Lauder Church’s Burns supper will be held on Friday, January 20, in The Lodge, Carfraemill. Tickets – Ian Brotherston (01578 722469).
A service will be held on New Year’s Day at 10.30am in Oxton Memorial Hall. There will be no service at Lauder that day.
The Christingle service at Melrose started 15 minutes late because of the long queue of adults and children filtering in. New Year’s Day services will be held at Bowden (9.30am) and Melrose (11am).
The now once-a-year trust newsletter, the 24-page (this time) Trimontium Trumpet, has been received from the printers and will be issued to members and friends. Dr John Reid’s research project at Burnswark (about the huge number of Roman lead sling bullets) has nominated for Research Project of the Year in the UK, to be awarded in London in February, and he is asking for people to vote for Bullets, Ballistas and Burnswark on www.archaeologyawards.org. It is the fifth one down in the research category.
Twenty-four members and helpers enjoyed their Christmas lunch at the Templehall Hotel last Tuesday.
The January meeting will be held in the institute on Thursday, the 5th, at 7.30pm when Matilda Hall will give a talk entitled ‘Giving Away A Kidney’.
A service will be held on New Year’s Day at 10.30am in Oxton Memorial Hall.
Rehearsals for Hansel and Gretel start on Wednesday, January 4, at 7pm in the Wauchope Hall.
The first film night of 2017 is on Saturday, January 7, at 7pm in the Wauchope Hall – The Danish Girl (15), doors open at 6.30pm.