CHURCH: The congregational board of Caddonfoot Church progressed plans for a new noticeboard at a special meeting on Sunday. A special committee was set up to make a recommendation to a full meeting of the board.The service was conducted by the Reverend Marion Dodd and the lessons, including a passage from the Glasgow Bible of Jamie Stuart, were read by Atholl Innes. Weekly Bible study continues every Thursday in Trinity Church hall.


PARISH CHURCH: Sunday morning’s service will be conducted by members of the worship team. The congregational board meets on the evening of August 1 in the church hall lounge.


Bridge Club: July 16 – N/S – 1, J. and M. Miller; 2, P. Gilligan and M. Millar; 3, S. West and R. Oates. E/W – 1, R. Goldie and M. McLeod; 2, S. White and J. Urquhart; 3, V. Johnstone and P. Learmonth.

ROTARY: Due to holidays a smaller number than usual attended last week’s meeting which saw president Tommy Mulvee in the chair. New member Mhairi Trickett spoke of her experiences and the pitfalls of local government in the Orkney Islands where she served as a councillor for eight years.


CHURCH: The next service in Innerleithen Church will be on August 5.


Kelso Connections: A quiz has been devised to test knowledge on seven new storyboards about people associated with Kelso who had made their mark in the wider world. The proceeds will go to St James’ Fair. Quizsheets are available from Kelso library, Seasons and Brown’s. The storyboards are on display in the windows of Seasons, town hall, Blair’s, Brown’s, Swan’s Shoes, Hector Innes and Darling Buds.


Rideouts: The first of the preliminary ride-outs organised by the Castle Craigs Club in the lead-up to the common riding took place to the Benty. Cornet Andrew Elliot and his Right and Left-Hand Men, Lee Earsman and Graeme Murray, had 76 mounted followers as they set off from the town, among them Semi-Jubilee Cornet Robert Rae. Prior to the riders leaving the Kilngreen, the ponies were judged by Sarah and Stewart Pool of Bentpath. The Benty Shield for best turned out pony was presented later in the afternoon by the Cornet, along with Jubilee Cornet Bill Harkness, to Lewis Bell. The runner-up prize went to Callum Henderson. The weather was fine when the riders left by way of Becks Farm, Caulfield and Hopsrigg, but it was raining en route to Bentpath. Tea was served in the hall at the Benty by Westerkirk WRI and the toast to the Cornet was proposed by ex-Cornet Simon Richardson, to which the Cornet replied, and there were songs from a number of the company. Before making the return journey, the front three were served drams by WRI president Elizabeth McNeil and they sang “There’s a Wee Bit Toon”. Cornet Andrew Elliot and his Right and Left-Hand Men led more than 40 riders to the Craig last Sunday. It was dry as they left the town, but there was heavy rain on the hill and everyone was soaked by the time they arrived at the Craig. A number of young riders were among those who took part and the James Harkness Memorial Trophy for best turned out horse or pony ridden by a girl studying at Langholm Academy went to Lyndsey Rae, daughter of Semi-Jubilee Cornet Robert Rae. The Craig Cup for best turned out pony 14.2hh and under was won by Chloe Aitken. The trophies were presented by the Cornet, and the judges at the Kilngreen were his mother, Ann Elliot, and sister Fiona. Castle Craigs president Andrew Johnstone made a short speech at the Craig in which he thanked the landowners and judges.

Art exhibition: The local art club exhibition opened in the town hall gallery last week. The opening was performed by John Packer who informed everyone that it was the 59th exhibition. Mr Packer spoke of his time at Reid & Taylor when the Scott Hay gallery was open for local exhibitions. He mentioned how the late Scott Hay had brought many fine artists to display their work in the town.

Rotary: Dr Mark Phillips, club president, welcomed Cornet Andrew Elliot and his Right and Left-Hand Men, Lee Earsman and Graeme Murray, to a dinner in the Crown Hotel. There was a good attendance of Rotarians and guests, and among them was Semi-Jubilee Cornet Robert Rae. The president introduced the Reverend Bob Milne, a former minister of the town, who proposed the toast to the Common Riding.


CHURCH: Activities – Sunday morning services at Bowden and Melrose; Wednesday, coffee morning; August 4, church fete at Bowden village hall, contributions requested.

PARTY: August 12 – Melrose in Bloom garden party at Harleyburn. Tickets from V. Miller (01896 822758) or P. Rowlands (01896 822024).

TRIMONTIUM: Forty-two members and friends of the Trimontium Trust took part in the annual outing on Saturday to the Tullie House Museum in Carlisle where, in addition to the Hadrian’s Wall section upstairs, there is a new “Frontiers” exhibition in the basement, built over (after excavation) the remains of the Luguvalium fort, constructed during the early 70s AD, from which came the soldiers, via Oakwood near Selkirk, who founded Trimontium fort in the mid or latter 70s. It had been the trust’s original intention to explore, first of all, Burnswark, a flat-topped hill near Ecclefechan, which sits between two Roman camps. But the weather put a stop to that. However, after lunch, the party set off to take in the Roman fort of Birdoswald on Hadrian’s Wall.


Festival Week: Games Queen Susie Thomson will be crowned at a church service on Sunday.

MP: Borders MP Michael Moore will hold an advice surgery in the institute on August 2.


CHURCH: There is a special morning service in Oxnam Kirk on August 5 to unveil the Reverend William Thompson Memorial Plaque. Mr Thompson was minister at Oxnam and surrounding parishes for 45 years. The service will be taken by Lindsay Thomson.

CAFE: The library cafe resumes on Wednesday morning, followed by another session on August 22.


CHURCH: The next service in Traquair Kirk will be on August 12.


SERVICE: The next service in Walkerburn Public Hall will be on August 19.


HOUSING: For some time Yetholm Community Council has been pressing for local input in the letting of houses in the village. Progrees has now been made in that Eildon Housing and Border Choice Homes have begun to advertise properties available to rent on the village noticeboard.

TRACTOR ROAD RUN: This annual event in aid of the Great North Air Ambulance had to be cancelled this year because of bad weather. Although food and refreshments had been purchased, it was suggested that they be sold and other fundraising efforts moved to the Wauchope Hall. In spite of the short notice, more than £700 was raised. Such was the success that consideration is now being given to a proposal that the event be moved from Mindrum to Yetholm in future as wet-weather facilities are on hand.

OPEN GARDENS: It had rained all week and there were fears that village gardens opening under Scotland’s Gardens Scheme would be a washout. However, the Sunday opening day saw the sunshine and plenty of people turned up, including a bus party of gardeners from Carlisle. In addition to the open gardens, there were teas, stalls and poetry readings. Proceeds will go to Scotland’s Gardens Scheme charities, including a locally-nominated one – Riding for the Disabled.