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WRI: President Molly Marshall welcomed members to this month’s meeting before introducing fellow member Margaret Taylor who showed how to make a patchwork square. Competition – best square – 1, Olive Hogg; 2, Sheila Hudson; 3, Sally Steel.


WRI: Dr Sandra McNeil, of the Abbotsford Trust, gave an illustrated talk on Sir Walter Scott and Abbotsford at the rural’s first meeting of the year. The competition was won by Ann Stewart.


WRI: Caroline Green from the Marie Curie charity gave an insight into Marie Curie herself who led an interesting and colourful life, apart from having discovered radium which went on to be a major treatment for cancer suffers. She explained how the charity was founded, the difference between Marie Curie and Macmillan nurses which often gets confused. A Marie Curie nurse not only treats cancer sufferers, but others with terminal illness. Competition – a lavender bag – 1, Mrs Ramskir; 2, Mrs Scott; 3, Mrs Crosbie. The member with most points and winner of the cup for 2011 was Mrs Crosbie. The next meeting is on March 8 in the hall at 7.15pm when Mr Bramhal will talk on wild birds.


MINTO WRI: President Mary Beck welcomed members to this month’s meeting and introduced the speaker, Julie Lamb, from The Lavender Touch. Julie, a massage therapist, aromatherapist and reflexologist who, as part of her work, provides treatment for cancer patients through The Lavender Touch. Based at the Macmillan Centre at Borders General Hospital, Julie and 11 other therapists provide a free complimentary therapy service to patients and their carers, who are referred to them by a doctor or other health-care professional. Julie then demonstrated a neck and shoulder massage, using a mixture of rose geranium and lavender oils, on member Dee Baxter. Win Nichol gave the vote of thanks and the money raised by the raffle was donated to The Lavender Touch.Competitions – home-made lavender bag – 1, Sheila Marshall; 2, Pat Jardine; 3, Chris Nicol; 4, Joan Lacey; three hyacinths bulbs, any colour – 1, Zilla Oddy; 2, Dee Baxter; 3, Sheila Marshall.


WEDNESDAY CLUB: Last week members heard a talk by Alan and Lorna Rollo on their experiences working with the homeless in Edinburgh. Competition winners for an etui (sewing kit) were Mrs N. Anderson, Mrs G. Forsyth and Miss J. Mather. The competition for next week’s meeting is for a piece of costume jewellery.

PARISH CHURCH: Following consultations with the congregations, the kirk session has decided to move to a single service at 10.15am, beginning from Sunday, March 25. The regular two services continue meantime – all age, 9.30am; traditional, 11am. Both will be conducted by the Reverend Julie Woods. There will be a series of six Reflections for Lent – the first was held last night.

WOMEN’S GROUP: A nibbles and natter night, with a quiz, will be held in the church hall at 8pm next Thursday.

AGM: The Friends of Thomas Group annual meeting will be held in the Black Bull Inn on Wednesday.

PATHS GROUP: The group is holding a coffee morning on March 3 in Hanover, The Square, from 10am. Donations can be handed in to Elsie Douglas, 17 Everest Road, or any member of the paths group.

CAMERA CLUB: The club met last Wednesday when members Sue and John Wilson gave a presentation of old postcards of Earlston. Competition – a local scene – projected images – 1 and 2, Curtis Welsh; 3, Hilary Barnes; prints – 1, Brian Sutherland; 2, Helen Pugh-Cook; 3, Brian Sutherland. In a change to the printed syllabus, next Wednesday sees the Border Image Battle at Selkirk, followed by – on March 7 – Ian Fullerton, from Haddington.Competition – Scottish coastlines.


WRI: Eckford had a visit from John Hennessey who spoke about his trip to Morocco last year to climb Mount Taubkal in the Atlas Mountains. Competition – slice of fruit cake – 1, Alma Elliot; 2, Margaret Jeary; 3, Isobel Henderson. The most interesting African artefacts were brought by Chris Robertson, Margaret Jeary and Christine Tucker.


BURNS SUPPER: More than 40 enthusiasts attended the Central Borders SNP Burns supper held in Gala Bowling Club. Councillor John Mitchell made a short speech of welcome and introduced the participants, beginning with Jim Calder from Innerleithen (address to the haggis). The Selkirk Grace was given by Councillor Bill Herd. After the meal the Immortal Memory was proposed by Ian Brown. Musical entertainment was provided by Eric and Kersten Faulkener. A surprise item was her singing of “Ae Fond Kiss” in her native German. Stuart Bell from Clovenfords toasted “The Lassies”, with Hawick’s Rae Reid replying. After reciting “Tam o’ Shanter”, Jim Gibson, a Souter, joined Bill Herd in support of Derek Philips in a rendition of “The Star o’ Rabbie Burns”. The evening ended with a chorus of “Scots Wha Hae”.

DRAW: The winning 50/50 draw number for this week is 2918.

Camera Club: The annual print and projected image competition with Midlothian Camera Club proved to be a close encounter. The print section was edged by Galashiels by a mere four points, but Midlothian took the DPI competition by a single point, giving the Borderers overall victory with a score of 330 to Midlothian’s 327. But Midlothian had the satisfaction of having the top-scoring image of 20 points in both classes. The evening was rounded off with supper provided by Galashiels members. There is no meeting at Langlee next week, but there are two events to which members are invited. On Wednesday the Borders exhibition takes place in Selkirk Parish Church and the following day sees the postponed three-way slide battle with Selkirk and Hawick clubs at the Hawick clubrooms.

ROTARY: Maybe not appropriately for Valentine’s Day or in February of a leap year, Norrie McLeish’s talk was on his latest book, Broken Promises, which will be published later this year. It tells of breach of promise of marriage cases in Scotland. For hundreds of years, until the law was repealed in 1984, a jilted partner could sue for breach of promise.


Camera Club: A dozen members of Hawick Film and Video Group were guests at last week’s meeting. Camera club president John Hill introduced Kenny Baillie with a compilation of members’ wide-ranging digital images. This was followed by John himself presenting his speciality, time-lapse photography. Examples of time-lapse effects were displayed, including scenes of landscapes with clouds building and dispersing as they tracked across the sky. Bert Lancaster then produced sequences of a holiday in South Africa. Henry Gray, spokesman for the film and video group, thanked the hosts for their hospitality. Next Thursday sees a three-way competition between Selkirk, Galashiels and Hawick at the high school lecture theatre.

Film and Video Group: The March 6 meeting is the annual competitions night with members judging the entries.

ROTARY: Three visitors were made welcome by president Liz Wood at last week’s meeting – Ronnie Johnston, a Teri and past president of Orkney Rotary Club, and Eddie Muir and the Reverend John Grover, both past presidents of Jedburgh Rotary Club. Speaker Dr Ross Cameron, of Borders Health Board, talked about the Margaret Kerr Palliative Care Unit which is to be built at Borders General Hospital. It will change and improve the treatment and care of terminal cancer sufferers, as well as supporting relatives. The unit will have eight en-suite rooms and about 200 admissions a year are expected, staying on average for 14 days. Ron Laidlaw, giving the vote of thanks, said the club would be involved in fundraising for the appeal launched to build the unit.


WHIST: The village hall will host whist on Tuesday at 7.30pm.


TICKETS: There will be an opportunity to buy tickets for The Sound of Music (March 26-31) from Graham McGrath’s, Eastgate, Peebles, from Saturday and the Thrift Shop, Innerleithen, from March 12. Tickets are also available by ringing 0845 224 1908 or emailing tickets@idaos.org.uk.

RACE NIGHT: St Ronan’s Primary School PTA will hold a race night in the school on Saturday from 7pm.

PUBLIC MEETING: St Ronan’s Games Week annual public meeting will be held next Thursday at 7pm in the council chamber, Memorial Hall, Leithen Road. The organising committee urgently requires additional members and anyone who is interested should contact Alan Patterson (07514 423425) or Stewart Wilson (07912 848009), or attend the meeting.

SERVICE: There is a service in Innerleithen Church at 11.30am on Sunday.


Quiz: Support from almost 40 people from Jedburgh, Oxnam and Ancrum made for an enjoyable Christian Aid quiz night in the Kenmore Hall last Friday. The event was sponsored by Churches Together in Jedburgh and the quizmaster was the Reverend Douglas Nicol from Denholm. Just short of £100 was raised for Christian Aid.

Bridge Club: February 13 – N/S – 1, M. Purdie and O. Whillans; 2, J. and M. Weightman; 3, B. and I. Middleton. E/W – 1, D. and P. Palmer; 2, A. and R. Stewart; 3, R. Oates and S. West.

PROBUS: The club has had an interesting variety of speakers since restarting in September. The latest was Ian Crook, of the Waverley Route Heritage Association, who told of the restoration of part of the track at Whitrope.


CONCERT: Young musicians and writers from across the Borders will be uniting for a special concert in support of children’s charity UNICEF tomorrow at Kelso Auld Parish Kirk. Pupils from Longridge Towers and Kelso High schools, plus performers from Abbey Brass, the junior section of Jedforest Instrumental Band, will take to the stage, compered by councillor and artist John Paton-Day. Highlights are sure to include renditions of Highland Cathedral by 14-year-old piper Cory McLean from Kelso, Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band by Abbey Brass and a medley of songs from Oliver by a Longridge Tower School chorus.Tickets from Hector Innes and Cafe under the Sun, Kelso, or Kenneth Henderson (01750 20112, email kennethhenderson420@btinternet.com).

Thursday Group: Isabel Gordon’s feminist look at history gave rise to much discussion and comment – both male and female. Today, John Hennessey describes another of his treks, this time to Mount Taubkal and the Atlas Mountains at 2pm in Abbey Row Centre. Next week retired senior police officer Jack Jones will talk about the Robert Black inquiry. Speaker for the April 12 gathering will be Di Higham.

BRIDGE CLUB: February 15 – Abbey Salver 7 – N/S – 1, Lesley Dick and Lynda Douglas; 2, Bob Stevenson and Annie Mitchell; 3, Jean Henry and Myra Thomson; E/W – 1, John and Marian Miller; 2, Mary and Jim Stone; 3, Nigel Lindsay and Helen Eccles. February 16 – Calchou Cup 10 – N/S – 1, James Duncan and Ged McIvor; 2, Dominic and Diana Alkin; 3, John Urquhart and Janet Kyle; E/W – 1, John and Marian Miller; 2, Robert Hutchinson and Jim Stone; 3, Alison Darling and Mary Logan.

ARCHERY AND DARTS: See Yetholm section.

MARKET: A farmers’ market will be held in The Square on Saturday, 9.30am-1.30pm.


Accordion club: Compere Adam Grant welcomed a good turnout to the February meeting in the Royal British Legion clubrooms. He introduced chief guests, the John Douglas Band, with John from Dumfries on lead accordion, Willie McRoberts of Moffat on second box, Ian Kirkpatrick from Dumfries playing fiddle and Ian Wilson of Crawford on piano, with Ian McRoberts on the drums. Others who entertained on accordion were Billy Bell and Les Hurst of Carlisle, Ken White of the Rigg, David Dunbar from Lockerbie, Janet Graham of Glasgow, James Johnstone from Annan, James Lawrie of Gilsland and Stuart Adamson from Newcastleton. Locals Roger Dobson and Eric Goodfellow also played the accordion, and Ian Woods from Northumberland was on the fiddle. Due to his work, Stuart Adamson is leaving the area and the club thanked him for his work as secretary.

Academy Fundraiser: The Academy teachers and pupils, along with help from parents, raised £488 for the Edinburgh Sick Children’s Hospital. David Bayne from Edinburgh was on hand to accept the cheque for the Sick Kids Friends’ Foundation from teacher and organiser Stuart Clement. The teachers were dressed as movie characters and Stuart Clement took part in a bush tucker trial with fellow teacher Alice Cullins. Teacher Balfour Bald agreed to have his head shaved if £500 was raised, so with the figure only slightly short, he gave the go ahead. His head was shaved by Stuart Clement to the cheers of the pupils.

Ewes: The local WRI celebrated 90 years of the rural in the valley with a party in the hall. President Claire Phillips welcomed everyone, including past members and guests from other institutes. Among the special guests present were Isabel Robertson (national chairman), Christine Hutton (national senior vice-chairman), Betty Burns (federation chairman) and Jean Wilson (federation secretary). Secretary Elaine Cavers read the minutes from the first meeting in 1922 and former president Frances Armstrong proposed a toast to Ewes WRI. One of the oldest members, Emily Bell, was called upon to cut the special birthday cake and she also received an honorary member’s certificate from Isabel Robertson and a basket of flowers from Claire Phillips. Supper was served up by the committee and the remainder of the evening was spent in a social capacity with games, songs from Pat Douglas of Teviothead and recitations by Grace Brown. Mhairi Telford Jammeh had penned a special song which the company sang. A vote of thanks was given by vice-president Susie Grant.

Bentpath: There was a good entry of 53 for the single-handed bowling tournament in the village hall. With play going beyond midnight, the finalists, Roy Park from the town and James Baxter of Easton, agreed to split the prize money. The beaten semi-finalists were Moffat Water 1, and Derek Murray, who was entered as Moffat Water 2.


HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION: Isobel Gordon’s illustrated talk at the association’s latest meeting covered the parts played by Thomas the Rhymer, the seer; Michael Scott, the wizard; and John Duns Scotus, the scholar; in Scotland, and the Borders in particular, during the 13th century. All had some influence on Scottish royalty.The vote of thanks was given by James Annand. The next meeting, on April 10, will feature the AGM plus cheese and wine.

Ormiston Bridge Club: February 13 – N/S – 1, V. Fairbairn and J. Bunyan; 2, J. Dun and L. Leeson; 3, D. Usher and A. Merry; 4, B. Stevenson and A. Ronald; E/W – 1, J. Stewart and P. Matthew; 2, D. and M. Swanson; 3, B. and J. Redshaw; 4, N. and M. Lindsay; 5, J. Chalmers and J. Russell.

FAMILY HISTORY: The Corn Exchange will on Sunday host Borders Family History Society’s meeting, featuring Saving, Spending and Family History – a slide-illustrated talk by Peter Munro, covering aspects of life in the 18th and 19th century.

TRIMONTIUM: The Curle celebrity lectures take place on April 19 and 26, and May 10. They will be delivered by the chairman of the Trimontium Trust, Dr John Reid.

FLOWER CLUB: The first meeting of the year was a fun night in the form of a hands-on workshop to make a container. The evening closed after a savoury supper provided by the committee. Next meeting is on March 7 in the Corn Exchange at 7.30pm with John Dalton’s “Oh what a peformance” demonstration.


WRI: The latest meeting was a craft night where members shared their crafting skills with each other. Competitions – a Valentine’s verse – 1, Dilys Wheelans; 2, Edith Scott; 3, Helen Pearce; three heart-shaped biscuits – 1, Sheila Swanson; 2, Sheena Galloway; 3, Edith Scott. The next meeting is on March 13, featuring The Vine Trust and Janice Whiteford. Competition – article from recycled material – a fruit loaf.

DANCE: A dance held in the village hall resulted in £126 being raised for the Margaret Kerr Unit at Borders General Hospital.


Coffee Mornings: The Games coffee morning made £330. Winners – teddy bear, Charlotte Simpson; tin of sweets, Scottie Wight; guess the number of sweets, Virginia Hunt. Morebattle in Bloom coffee morning will be held in the institute on March 3 at 10.30am.

WRI: Members Mary Pringle and Helen Cessford gave a talk and presentation on their exchange trip to Shetland. Virginia Hunt proposed the vote of thanks. Competitions – two oatcakes – 1, Janette Stenhouse; 2, Nancy Anderson; 3, Mary Pringle; woollen scarf – 1, Brenda Dickson; 2, Grace Cessford; 3, Marion Dumma.

ARCHERY AND DARTS: See Yetholm section.


Coffee morning: The parish guild held a coffee morning in the village hall which raised £315. Competition winners for guessing the weight of the cake and the number of tea bags in a jar were Jeannie Oliver and Maureen Telford respectively. Beth Slater guessed the correct number of sweets in a jar. The money raised will be used for guild projects.


WRI: At the February meeting president Mary Redburn introduced Brenda Lambert from The Lavender Touch charity. Brenda told members how her organisation provided aromatherapy treatments for people with cancer in the Borders. A vote of thanks was given by Elaine Thornton-Nicol. Competition – something tartan – 1, Elaine Thornton-Nicol; 2, Lorna Dickson; 3, Margaret Luke. Members meet again next Thursday in the community wing.


YOUTH CLUB: The youth club meets tonight at 6.30pm in the village hall, featuring a fun look at climate change with Anna Craigen from Borders Forest Trust. More information from Gillian on 01573 440538.

CHURCH: The Oxnam Church coffee morning was held in Jedburgh on Saturday and raised £860 for church funds. A diamond jubilee auction and barbecue has been organised for May 31 at Crailing Hall. Viewing at 6pm, with the auction starting at 7pm. Any items or pledges for auction will be much appreciated – contact Colin Hogg (01835 850394) or any church elder. The Christmas Eve carol service raised £620 for the Margaret Kerr Unit at the BGH.


WRI: Elspeth Borthwick gave a hilarious, interesting and intriguing talk, illustrated with photographs, on her life and nursing experiences. Competition – a tea loaf – 1, Anne Wood; 2, Jackie Pinkerton; 3, Alice Telford. The next meeting is on March 21.


POLICE CONTACT: Members of the public are welcome to raise matters of concern at a police surgery at Philiphaugh Community School next Thursday between 10am-1pm.


BEETLE DRIVE: There will be a Grand Beetle Drive tomorrow in the village hall, plus a stovie supper. Bring your own refreshments.

St Boswells

DRAMA CLUB: Last Saturday’s coffee morning raised in excess of £500. The club has 120 advance sale tickets for its March 14-16 production of The Odd Couple in the village hall. More tickets are available at the post office.

EXHIBITION: Art and craft groups have combined to put on an exhibition of their work on Saturday, 9.30am-noon, in the church hall.

PRIMARY SCHOOL: The parent council held a fundraising Valentine’s cinema evening last Thursday with two film showings for P1-3 and P4-7.

COMMUNITY COUNCIL: Members meet tonight in the Lesser Village Hall at 7.30pm.

ST BOSWELLS LIVE!: Circus Envy and Torino will be playing in the village hall tomorrow night, along with local acts in an open mic session. Tickets available from St Boswells Post Office.


SERVICE: There is a service in Traquair Kirk at 10am on Sunday.


SERVICE: The next service of worship in Walkerburn village hall will be on March 19.


CROSS-BORDER CLUB: The club meets today at 12.15pm in the Wauchope Hall for lunch and a talk by Karen Burn on conservation work at Hunting Hall.

PANTOMIME: After a break last year, the village pantomime has made a welcome return.Puss in Boots played to sellout audiences.There were a number of newcomers, both on stage and helping backstage. Scenes told the Puss in Boots story and were interspersed with local topical issues. Proceeds will go to Wauchope Hall funds.

BORDER ARCHAEOLOGICAL SOCIETY: A training workshop in monument monitoring has been held in the Youth Hall. Also, a field study was held at Butterstone Shank which lies at the foot of Coldsmouth Hill, south of Shotton HillI.

WEDDING ANNIVERSARY: Michael and Winfred Wickham, of Main Street, have celebrated their seventieth wedding anniversary.

KIRK REPAIRS: Repair work to Yetholm parish kirk has been completed. An afternoon of information and thanks is to be held tomorrow, 2.30-4pm.This will include discussions for future development.

DANCE TICKETS: Tickets for the Borders Shepherds’ Show Dance on March 9 in the Wauchope Hall have gone on sale.They can be purchased at the village shop, garage or from committee members

DARTS: Entries for the Yetholm Dry Bar open annual darts championship cup will be accepted next Thursday at the Youth Hall from 7-9pm. First-round matches will be played on the night. For further information, ring Ian Rendall Reid on 01573 420703.

ARCHERY: March 3, from 1-3pm at the playing fields, sees the second Yetholm Upland Roving Archers Olympic Passport session. Because some children were turned away last Saturday due to high demand, a booking system has been introduced. It can be accessed by telephoning Ian Rendall Reid on 01573 420703.