Being good sports pays off for Jock and Pete

Two Berwickshire men have been given BEMs in the Queen's new year honours list for being good sports.

Wednesday, 3rd January 2018, 4:44 pm
Updated Wednesday, 3rd January 2018, 4:46 pm
Pete Hardie in 2015.

For services to his community, Coldstream’s Jock Law was awarded an MBE, while Duns sports coach Pete Hardie was given the same honour for services to tennis and badminton.

For 82-year-old Jock, the recognition is a tribute to his involvement within multiple Coldstream groups and initiatives over the last 60 years.

A Coldstream Guard until 1986, Jock later went on to spend over 20 years managing swimming pools at Duns, Eyemouth and Haddington before a further eight years as a town councillor, rounding off his working life running a picture framing business.

Jock Law in Coldstream's Men's Shed for the official opening.

But at the same time, he spent years volunteers as a Boys Brigade leader, taking adult keep-fit classes and coaching the town’s football teams. Jock is currently chairman of the town’s civic week and the Coldstream Mens Shed, helped found the Gateway charity responsible for the town’s floral and Christmas light displays, and also formed the local branch of the Ex-Coldstream Guards.

Jock was also instrumental in helping the Coldstream Community Trust’s takeover and conversion of the old West Church into its community centre, where he also served as chairman and janitor.

He said: “All of these things are still running but I have bowed out of most of them now.

“You don’t think about it all when you are doing it. When I saw it all written down I couldn’t believe it all and you do wonder where all the years have gone.

Jock Law in Coldstream's Men's Shed for the official opening.

“I’ve no idea who put me forward for it, they have kept it to themselves.”

Jock moved to Coldstream from Morebattle as a boy in 1946, and has lived there since with his wife Sheena. The couple has two sons as well as grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Meanwhile Pete Hardie of Duns has been awarded an MBE for services to sport and young people in the Borders.

A tennis coach for over 25 years and a badminton coach for more than 40, Pete has taught more than 2,000 youngsters across the Borders both sports, and continues to do so at the age of 70.

Pete, who himself was selected for the Scottish national squad in his earlier playing years, said: “We have been quite lucky at Duns because we had a conveyor belt of kids coming through right from day one.

“We have between 60 and 70 kids coming to the three sessions every Friday night and have between 10 and 12 of them playing at full national level too.”

And over the years Pete has helped almost 50 youngsters reach the Scottish badminton squads as well as coaching his own children along the way.

“The reason I kept going after my son and daughter stopped playing was to keep the conveyor belt going, It is great to see the kids coming through the doors on a Friday night, I really enjoy that. We have got good players in the Borders and we need to keep going.

“I believe it is all about the kids, it’s not so much about the coaches. I’m still really hungry and enjoying it.”

The retired Scottish Borders Council gardener, lives in Duns with his wife Anne and has two children Peter and Clare.

He was named the town’s citizen of the year in 2015 and before that was recognised by Badminton Scotland with the Donnella Crawford memorial award for his work coaching in the Borders in 2012.

But he says this honour still came as a huge shock.

“I couldn’t believe it when the letter came through the door in November,” he said. “I’m really chuffed with this, but I just couldn’t believe it.

“I have only just told my son and daughter and my sister. I have been wanting to tell a couple of them at the badminton club, the ones that have been helping me so I’m looking forward to that.”