District News


VILLAGE HALL: The village hall opens its doors again on Sunday for last-minute Christmas purchases of local food and gifts, and collection of orders from November’s festive fair, from 2-4pm.


WRI: Members watched a DVD of the day their president, Margaret Mills, received her MBE from the Queen at Holyrood Palace at this month’s meeting. This was followed by supper supplied by members and Secret Santa presents were distributed. Competition – best-dressed parcel – 1, Helen Cavers; 2, Dorrie Graham; 3, Jeanette Farquhar third. The next meeting is on January 21.


Parish Church: It was Gift Day in Caddonfoot Church on Sunday when the congregation brought along financial donations for Borders children’s charities. The third advent candle was lit by Aaron Decoteau ahead of the service by conducted by the Reverend Marion Dodd. The Christmas tree and candles were installed by Joyce Brown and John and Irene Bruce. After the service, members enjoyed festive fare, including mince pies. Copies of the newsletter have now been distributed by members of the outreach committee. Congregational roll reports are available for inspection while the next Bible study will not be held until January 10.


CHARITY GOLF: Auld Earlston is a group formed earlier this year by local folk to bring the Earlston of the past to life through photographs, newspaper clippings and peoples’ memories to ensure that the history of the village can be kept alive for future generations. Earlston Golf Club Society has been around since 1906 and although the golf course hasn’t been playable since the late 1930s, the society is thriving. For the past several years, Earlston Golf Club has held a charity match at Monksford House Golf Course, near St Boswells. Proceeds are dedicated to local organisations each year. Auld Earlston was chosen to be the beneficiary this year and have been presented with a laptop, printer and projection screen which will help in gathering, recording and presenting information about life in and around the village in bygone days. Auld Earlston held two slide shows earlier in the year for which the equipment had to be borrowed.

WRI: At the last meeting of the year, members enjoyed carol singing with Rosemary Armstrong on piano and Jennifer Bryson’s film show of the Holy Land, assisted by Ian Gibb.Competitions – Christmas limerick –1, Heather Smith; 2, Trish Grierson; Christmas biscuits – 1, Betty Paton; 2, Barbara Greer. The next meeting will be a Burns supper in Hanover Close at 7.30pm on January 17.

CAMERA CLUB: At last week’s meeting freelance photographer Jim Gibson from Norham gave an overview of his career in the military and work as a photographer, accompanied with images. These included pictures of Taliban prisoners in Afghanistan and navy ships on exercise. Jim then judged the competition, entitled “action” – print section – 1, Helen Pugh-Cook; 2, Curtis Welsh; 3, Angela Jewell. Digital – 1, Curtis Welsh; 2, Helen Pugh- Cook; 3, Linsey Anderson. The next club meeting will be held on January 9 when members entertain. Competition – a calendar image.


WRI: Members had a Christmas night out at Teviot Smokery where they enjoyed a meal and exchanged cards and presents. The silver plate for most competition points in 2012 was won by Alma Elliot, with Jean Kinghorn and Chris Robertson second, and Annette Fraser third.


CARPET BOWLING: Kirkhope carpet bowling club has closed after more than 100 years. Linda Muirhead, who was chairman, said: “It’s really just lack of interest. We’ve been struggling along for about two or three years, only getting about half a dozen or so turning up at sessions. However, there is money in the pot if anyone wants to restart it.” But she stressed that the annual New Year’s Day tournament would go ahead in the hall, starting at 2pm, with proceeds going to The Lavender Touch charity. “We’re hoping to make it a real community effort and we’re looking for helpers,” she added. Anyone who can assist or wants more information should contact Linda (01750 52238) or Eileen (01750 52715).


PROBUS: The club has been awarded £1,249 under the Awards for All Scotland Scheme. This will enable it to buy new audio and visual equipment for use by speakers and members at meetings. These are held on the second and fourth Thursdays of the month (September to May) at the Kingsknowes Hotel. Potential new memebers are always welcome and anyone interested should contact secretary Jim Stewart on 01896 850565.Speaker at the latest meeting was club member Ian Skinner who spoke about the Second World War battle of Leros, one of the Dhodhekanisos Islands in the Aegean. He explained that this conflict was little known because it had resulted in a major defeat for the British at the time of the Allied invasion of Italy and had been largely hushed up. His interest followed from a holiday visit to the island. Colin Hart proposed the vote of thanks. The next meeting is on January 10.

CAROL SERVICE: Galashiels Rotarians are holding a carol service on Christmas Eve in Bank Street Gardens (7.30pm).

Camera Club: The Men v Women competition proved once again to be a popular event. The competition on a theme of “Buildings” was judged by Kelso Camera Club’s Bill Hume. In the end the men came out victorious. Individual awards – prints – beginners – 1, Alan Kennedy; 2, Linda Ormiston; 3, Anne Wood. Main – 1, Ian Oliver; 2, Gordon Swalwell; 3, Geoff Harrison.Commended – Neil McLean, Christine Swalwell (2), Alan Kennedy. DPIS – beginners – 1, Jim Paxton; 2, Carolyn Grant; 3, Julie Cleland. Commended –Janet Kennedy. Main – 1, Peter Lee; 2, Ian Oliver; 3, Christine Swalwell. Commended – John Frater, Ena Robson, Jim Paxton, Richard Lillico, Alistair Peacock. The next meeting at Langlee is on January 9 when the speaker will be Georgia Connolly, presenting “The weird and wonderful marine wildlife beneath the waves of the St Abbs and Eyemouth Voluntary Marine Reserve”.


WRI: Members enjoyed their Christmas party at which they entertained and presents were exchanged. Competition – prettiest parcel – 1, Elspeth Cook; 2, Cath Turner. Raffle – Elspeth Cook. The next meeting will be on January 9 at 7.30pm when Mr Scott will give a talk on metal detecting. Competition – an old coin.


SERVICE: Gordon Kirk will hold its watchnight service on Christmas Eve at 11.30pm.


SERVICES: Greenlaw Church will host two services on Sunday – 9.45am, advent; 6.30pm, family carol. And on Christmas Eve there is a watchnight service at 11.30pm, with the offering going to the BGH Margaret Kerr appeal.


Bridge Club: December 10 – 1, V. Johnstone and M. Miller; 2, R. Goldie and M. McLeod; 3, S. White and J. Urquhart; 4, K. Auckland and J. Simpson; December 12 – 1, M. Tuson and J. Urquhart; 2, M. Millar and I. Wyze; 3, M. and H. Dooley; 4, K. Auckland and R. Witherington.

Film AND Video Group: In a change to the syllabus programme, Ann Singleton presented a follow-up to her slideshow of the MV Balmoral’s Titanic Memorial Voyage, with part one of a DVD edition which was produced to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Titanic’s tragic maiden crossing of the Atlantic. This part of the programme covered the journey from Southampton to Cobh in Ireland and on to the wreck site where a memorial service took place. The second part, to be screened on January 15 – the first meeting of 2013, covers the arrival of the Balmoral in New York.

Camera Club: John Hill presented a practical demonstration on the conversion of colour to black and white images by means of computer technology. The meeting on January 10 is billed as “Ron’s scary Munros and other hills”, by Ron Bell. Members are reminded to submit entries for the flora and fauna competition at this time.

ROTARY: It was Christmas party time last week when president Tommy Mulvee and his wife, Angela, welcomed members, their wives and partners, along with Billy McWatters’ guest white dove Julie, who made a belated appearance. Past president Bobby Cairns was MC. Joyce Tinlin gave a rendition of “In the still of the night” and “Crackers and turkeys”. Jane Bannerman recited “The ballad of Sonia Snell” and the evocative “Bring in the tree”. Pat Sutherland was in fine voice for “Silverbells”, “Winter wonderland”, “White Christmas” and a duet with Joyce, “Be still”. Margaret Renwick, Ina Cairns and Betty Oliver gave a fine rendition of “On a stormy night” and “When a child is born”. A surprise performer was Jim Walker who gave a performance of Clement Clark Moore’s Christmas poem “A visit from St. Nicholas”. All the singers were accompanied on piano by Rosalyn Walker.


CHURCH: There will be services on Sunday (10.30am) and Christmas Day (11am) in Innerleithen Church. At 4pm on Christmas Eve, a family service will be held in Cardrona Village Hall.

Treasure Trail: Thirty-eight question sheets were handed out for the Switch On Sunday treasure trail compiled by Adrian and Sheila Keddie. Most were handed in at Caerlee Mills where all the young participants received a bag of sweets. The winners, the Brydon family, received a box of chocolates.


LOST SHEEP: People shopping in the town may notice that the Messy Church Shepherd has lost some sheep and they have taken refuge in 12 shops. The children of Howdenburn and Parkside schools are on their trail. They have to find the sheep and their names, as well as answering a question on the Christmas Story and help the shepherd find his sheep.

CAROLS: There will be carols, hymns and readings for Christmas with Jedburgh Rotarians and St John’s Church choir in the church in The Pleasance on Sunday at 3pm.

Bridge Club: Results from December 10 – N/S – 1, N. Porter and S. Graham; 2, A. and R. Stewart; 3, J. Henry and A. Mitchell; E/W – 1, D. and P. Palmer; 2, B. and I. Middleton; 3, M. and H. Ouldcott.


BRIDGE CLUB: December 13 – Millennium Trophy 7 – N/S – 1, Sheena McPherson and Lesley Dick; 2, Rena Stewart and Val Johnstone; 3, Jean Henry and Myra Thomson; E/W – 1, John and Marian Miller; 2, Pam and David Palmer; 3, Dominic and Diana Alkin.


WRI: At the December meeting there was a Christmas quiz, making a lovely mess decorating Christmas biscuits and eating festive treats. Santa also put in a very brief appearance. Competitions – Christmas biscuit – 1, Jean Thomson; 2, Jenny Watson; 3, Clare Milne. Ruth Scoular won the home-made Christmas cracker competition. The next meeting is the Scottish evening on January 16.


CLOSED: Lauderdale library’s last opening before Christmas will be on Saturday. It reopens on January 5.


SERVICE: A candle-lit Christmas Eve service at Legerwood Kirk starts at 6.30pm.


Activities: tomorrow – 9.30am, Melrose PS Christmas service; Sunday – services at Bowden (9.30am) and Melrose (11am); Traidcraft stall, donations of mincemeat pies welcome; Christmas Eve watchnight service, volunteer readers required.

Eildon Singers: The Eildon Singers, under their new conductor, James Young from Yarrowford, performed the tunes of Faure’s Requiem in Melrose Parish Church on Sunday evening before the interval and a medley of community and choir carols in the second half. A welcome return was made to the previous practice of a “socialising session” with mulled wine and shortbread at the interval. 0rganist was John Bryden, pianist Heather Cattanach and cellist Mrs Young. A retiring collection was taken for the Margaret Kerr unit.

Trimontium: It has always been the case that – open a museum and people offer you artefacts. A more unusual offer was made by a female quilter who had contributed a panel to an exhibition in York. Entitled “The ghosts of Dere Street”, she wondered if the museum would like a loan of the panel. But she stipulated that it must be hung to be seen, but not to be touched.Finding a place in the building that satisfies that criterion is proving a problem. Exploration is under way.


WRI: The Christmas meeting was a meal at Fletchers in Selkirk, followed by fun and games. One of Santa’s elves turned up, bearing gifts for everyone. Competition – best-wrapped Christmas parcel – 1, Lyn Robertson; 2, Gweyn Williamson; 3, Sheena Galloway. The next meeting is on January 8, featuring Zumba with Sybil. Competition – three oatcakes and best Christmas cracker joke.


WRI: An excellent meal was had at Barlogan, Wendy Lyle’s home. Competition – wrapped parcel – 1, Sylvia Thompson; 2, Jackie Pinkerton; 3, Denise Barclay.

CAROLS: There will be a Christmas Eve carol service in Channelkirk at 6.30pm.


MASS: The children of St Joseph’s School, Selkirk, and St Margaret’s School, Hawick, joined forces at a special mass on Friday at St Joseph’s Church. The readings and bidding prayers were led by the children. Father Robert Afayori, in his homily, spoke about Christmas in his native Ghana and later presented the youngsters with gifts. Music was supplied for carols by joint head teacher Russell Williams on his guitar.


Telephone Kiosk: The telephone kiosk is looking very festive, thanks to decorations made by Stichill Flower Arranging Group.


SERViCE: The is a Christmas Eve service in Traquair Kirk at 7pm.


CAROLS: Sunday will see carol singing round the village from 5.30pm, followed by refreshments at Caberston Coffee Shop at 7pm.


SERVICE: Westruther Church will hold its fourth in advent service on Sunday at 11.45am.


HISTORY SOCIETY: Members enjoyed a Christmas dinner in the Border Hotel before the entertained each other with recitations and stories. A highlight was a reading in Norwegian by Michael Rustad – he followed it up with an English translation.

ACCORDION CLUB: Yetholm was well represented at a pre-Christmas meeting of Kelso Accordion Club. Enjoying a slot was Netta Harvey, Shotton, on the keyboard and her grandson, Scott Gillies, The Venchen, accordion. A number of Yetholm residents were in the audience.

ACCESS: An access road onto Dow Brae is being constructed to serve a new house in the field behind Maple Cottage.

CAROL SERVICES: It will be a busy day in the village church on Sunday. A carol service in the morning, conducted by the Reverend Robin McHaffie, is to be followed at 3pm with Yetholm Village Choir presenting a programme of Christmas music and readings.

PRIMARY SCHOOL: The school has produced a newsletter detailing its festive activities. A copy has been posted in the village shop.