Thursday, 3rd March 2016, 8:10 am
Updated Saturday, 5th March 2016, 9:16 am


Ashkirk Village Hall will be hosting a World Day of Prayer service on March 4 at 2pm. The order of service was written by Christian women of Cuba. The hall is served by the 97 bus and there is adequate parking for cars.



Whist drive and dominoes will be held on March 7 at 7.30pm in Bedrule village hall.


Camera group

Lloyd Smith opened up the subject of video production using digital cameras – members found this an interesting and helpful evening. The next session is on March 7 and takes the form of a workshop evening, discussing camera and computer software issues. Visitors welcome.

Coffee morning

Bowden Village Hall hosts a coffee morning on March 5 (10am-noon) in aid of hall


Quiz night

Bowden Village Hall hosts a quiz night on March 5 at 7.30pm. Teams of four – £10. Phone 01835 822131.


Parish church

The spring coffee morning will be held on March 5 from 10am-noon in the church hall. Donations welcome for the cake and candy stall and raffle (no alcohol) from 9am on the day. The trustees meet on March 7 in the church hall lounge at 7pm. The March 6 service at 10.15am will be conducted by the Reverend Julie Woods. Lynsey Robertson, a pupil from Earlston High School, will give a talk on her gap year-trip to China with the Project Trust. Lynsey has to raise £6,200 to enable her to go, so there will be a retiring collection to help her. The spring church magazine should be with deliverers

soon. Messy Church is on March 19 from 10.30am-1pm in the church hall. Holy communion will be celebrated on March 20 at 10.15am.

Women’s Group

The next meeting is on March 3 when a speaker from the Red Cross will give a talk at 8pm in the church hall.

Wednesday club

Last week’s meeting was hosted by Ms K. Brownlie who welcomed members, including a new one, Mr T. Connor. Mrs S. McKay then tested memories with a quiz. Mrs S. Donaldson thanked all members for the knitted squares they did for Blankets for African Babies. Competition – Hummel ornament – 1, Mrs J. Kerr; 2, Mrs B. Holland; 3, Mrs R. Murray. The next meeting is on March 9 and the competition is for a fridge magnet.



The latest meeting was held in the Kingsknowes Hotel last Thursday and attended by 61 members. Speaker Dave Potts, secretary of the Melrose and District Fair Trade Group, said Fair Trade gives the consumer a direct link to the producer and is effectively a partnership. It ensures a fair price for the producer and includes a Fair Trade premium which supports social, economic and environmental improvements, which includes education, health care and clean water. Dave and his colleagues have been on trips to India, Bangladesh and Chile to meet the producers and Fair Trade is in action all over India. He described the efforts put in by the Melrose Steering Group to achieve Fair Trade Town status, including ensuring local authority support, a media and publicity campaign to achieve a wide awareness of the project and a large percentage of local businesses actively participating. Active in the process were the children of Melrose Primary School, all three town churches, local businesses, including the George & Abbotsford and the Kings Arms hotels, and the retail outlets of the Co-op, Spar, Country Kitchen, Abbey Mill shop, and Merlin Music. Success was achieved in August 2015 when Melrose achieved Fair Trade Town status, joining Peebles and Selkirk as the other Borders’ towns who have clinched the same achievement. Scottish Borders Council will be including the Fair Trade mark on the road signs at the three entry points to Melrose. At 7.30pm on March 10 there will be a talk in the Ormiston Institute in Melrose by a woman from Nicaragua, Fatima Ismael, who will speak from first-hand experience about supplying Fair Trade coffee. The talk is sponsored by Melrose & District Fair Trade Group. The next Probus club meeting will be on March 10 and the talk given by John Parrish – “Portrait Photography”.

Trinity church

The choir, under the leadership of Dorothy Howden, opened Sunday’s service with an introit and the minister, Elspeth Harley, conducted proceedings. It is Fair Trade Fortnight and Ann Grieve, from Caddonfoot Church, invited some of the congregation to join her for a Fair Trade breakfast. She explained which countries the various products came from, most of them poorer areas of the world. Fair trade has made a huge difference to the people of those countries, enabling them to buy equipment and other necessities for them to have a comfortable existence. Trinity is looking for a Fair-trade Champion to help to keep this subject on the agenda. Anyone interested in helping should speak to Elspeth or Bill and Irene Cheyne. Lorna Jones performed th Bible reading. Bible study continues on Wednesday evenings and Bill Cheyne intimated that there is to be a congregational board meeting on Tuesday, March 8, at 7pm in the church hall.



Gordon Flower Show AGM will take place on March 7 at 7pm in the village hall. New members welcome.



Jean Muir gave a powerpoint presentation on Jedburgh Grammar School, assisted by historian Chris Veitch. The school was founded in 1618 by Bishop Turnbull of Glasgow and was affiliated to the abbey. This was normal practice in those days and she then reiterated the educational developments over the centuries. Billy Connolly, on a visit, described the Rutherford building as a a “Desert w’i Wee Windows”. John Aitkin gave a vote of thanks.


Alan Trimby gave an interesting and emotive talk on his kidney transplant experience. Alan, who was a keen sportsman, participating in golf, athletics and rugby, unknown to him, had a hereditary kidney condition. This later manifested itself after he had joined the police, resulting in him requiring a kidney transplant. He explained the painful and traumatic journey he undertook in the procedure when a suitable donor was found. He now enjoys a more-or-less normal life, but has to monitor and regulate all aspects of his lifestyle. Many questions ensued which led to further discussion.

Bridge club

March 1 – Easter Pairs – 1, Bob Francombe & George Graham; 2, John & Marian Miller; 3, Patsy Gilligan & Mary Millar.

Camera club

Last Thursday’s meeting was the monochrome competition which was the penultimate contest of the season, June and Pat Rafferty judging.

Results – digital images – 1, The Armidillo by Dennis Laing; 2, Central Pier by Ali Graham; 3, Homing in on the Tower, also by Ali Graham. Prints – 1, Big Sky at Salmon Bothy by Bernie Gajos; 2, Closed by Dennis Laing; 3, Sign of our times by Bernie Gajos. The Armidillo was judged to be overall winner. Next Thursday’s meeting is a talk by Sam Cornwall about Fringe Photographic Technique.


Community council

Innerleithen and District Community Council will hold its monthly meeting on March 7 in the council chamber, Leithen Road, at 7.15pm. The first item on the agenda will be the open forum where residents are invited to raise local issues.


The service in Innerleithen Church on March 6 will be at 10.30am, followed by a light lunch.

Public meeting

The annual public meeting of St Ronan’s Border Games will take place on March 11 in the Vale of Leithen Social Club at 7.30pm. Anyone who is interested in St Ronan’s Games Week is urged to attend the meeting. The management of the Games would welcome members of the public to the meeting, whether they be intending to join the committee or just to offer support.


St Ronan’s School PTA will hold a craft fair and table-top sale at the school on March 19 (10am-noon). There will be a wide variety of stalls as well as coffees, raffle and Easter craft activities for children.


Bridge club

February 22 – N/S – 1, V. Johnstone & M. Miller; 2, M. Weightman & H. Long; 3, D. & P. Palmer; E/W – 1, R. Oates & S. West; 2, P. Harris & M.Forsyth; 3, B. Middleton & I. Middleton.


Film club

Kelso Youth Project Film Club presents Mission Impossible 4 on March 10 at The Planet (next door to Border Ice Rink). Doors open 6pm, film starts 6.15pm. Entrance is free, tuck shop open. For further information and to be put on the mailing list, email ian at [email protected]


Abbey Quilters will meet on March 8 at 7pm in Abbey Row Centre when Elaine Pettigrew will show how to do shadow appliqué. Members should remember their name badge and mug. For further information, contact Sandra Kinnoch on 01835 850324.

Thursday Group

Dr John Reid, chairman of the Trimontium Trust, spoke about the recent archaeological research at Burnswark, an Iron Age hill fort near Ecclefechan which the Romans later appear to have besieged. Today, Christine Henderson speaks about “The Reivers: Romance and Reality” – 2pm, Abbey Row Centre. Next week it’s John Hennessey with “The Sights and Sounds of Laos”.


Cheviot Youth and Kelso High School have issued a free lunch, with musical entertainment, invitation for March 18 (12.30pm) at The Planet (next door to Border Ice Rink) to celebrate the end of the third Budget, Shop, Store and Cook (BSSC) project. To book a table, email Ian at [email protected] or text him on 07958 277766.

Applications invite

Applications for funding from Charity Begins At Home by clubs and organisations in the TD5 area should be submitted to Penny Fleming, 51 Broomlea, Kelso TD5 7RB, by April 2. Applications received after that date will not be considered.

Bridge club

February 24 – Rose Bowl – N/S – 1, Jean McLaren & Alison Ireland; 2, Alex Jeffrey & Vanessa Wilson; 3, Val Fairbairn & Jean Bunyan; E/W – 1, Annie Mitchell & Bob Stevenson; 2, Mary & Nigel Lindsay; 3, Lynda Douglas & Lesley Dick. February 25 – Millennium Trophy – 1, Jean Henry & Myra Thomson; 2, Dominic & Diana Alkin; 3, Rena Stewart & Maureen Weightman; 4, Shirley Armstrong & Moira Ayton; 5, Paul Brooks & Eilean Hogarth; 6, David Harris-Burland & Sheila Urquhart.


Probus club

At the latest meeting in the Eskdale Hotel, president Harry Aitken welcomed 28 members and one guest. The gathering was informed that the bus trip scheduled for April 13 would be to either Annan Distillery or Devil’s Porridge , with additional lunch at Solway Lodge. The president welcomed speaker Alex McCracken with his presentation of “Historical Eskdale”, with slides covering some of the local cemeteries, and showing the creative stone carvings of both dates and figures. This was followed by historical evidence of the foundations of Gilnockie Tower. A talk on Whita stone used for the Town Hall included reference from the 1793 census, showing that the town had 30 masons and 20 carpenters working, with the stone being quarried from the back of Whita Hill. By the 1835 census these numbers were reduced to six masons and 10 joiners/carpenters.

The Ettrick Shepherd, whose monument overlooks St Mary’s Loch, was also carved from Whita stone. Alex then gave details of the time of the distillery, which piped water from the Skippers Well for blending the whisky. He went into detail about the water supply from Whita Well and how it was purified by the sandstone and others in and around the town such as the Well Close and Betty’s Well, that all supplied fresh water.

After showing various slides from the rivers, including one of the Big Dowie, he finished on a lighter note with one called Betty’s Bottom. After taking questions, a vote of thanks followed from Bobby Morrison.

Operatic society

The local amateur operatic and dramatic society is staging its annual production from March 13-19 in the Buccleuch Centre. This year it’s the musical Sunshine on Leith.



A World Day of Prayer service will take place in Lauder Church on March 4 at 7pm. This will be a joint event with Earlston and Stow churches.


President Senga Towers welcomed a full house of members and visitors to the February meeting. She paid tribute to Anne Strangeways, an active member and past treasurer for many years who had passed away. In her memory, it was decided to send a cheque for £50 to the Borders Defibrilator Fund. David Henry, from St Boswells, a Marathon des Sables medal winner in April last year, gave a talk, along with photographs, describing his gruelling experiences in the Sahara Desert. Classed as the “toughest race on Earth”, it involved running in daytime temperatures of up to 52C to frozen nights sleeping on a rug in a mumified sleeping bag in an open-ended tent. He had to check his shoes in the morning for scorpions. It took David 10 months of intense training prior to the event. More than £7,000 was raised for his group’s chosen charities. Hostess for the evening, Janet Laidlaw, gave the vote of thanks. Competitions (judged by David and his wife, Linda) – hip flask – 1, Wendy Bryson; 2, Liz Dalgliesh; 3, Christine Brandeschi; date and walnut loaf – 1, Christine Riddell; 2, Wendy Bryson; 3, Sheila Hardie. Sheila Hardie and Annette Holton organised the raffle. The next meeting is in Lauder Primary School on March 8 at 7.30pm. Topic – “Lauder Primary School, Past and Present”, by Robert Towers. Competitions – wedge of Border Tart and photograph of Lauder.

Coffee morning

Channelkirk and Lauder Church Guild’s monthly coffee morning will be on March 12 (instead of March 5) from 10-11.30am in The Church Centre.

Coffee morning

A coffee morning held last Saturday in support of Mary and Rob Wilson (Kershaw Racing) raised £2,325. Organisers are grateful for donations and support, particularly from Lauder Community Choir.



In February, 30 members and friends enjoyed a Burns social and quiz night. Mary Slater addressed the haggis before the meal was served. The quiz, set by president Kim Bone, was narrowly won by a team of Barbara Carter, Kirsty Robb and Joan Duncan. Next meeting is on March 8 when Jamie McKenzie will demonstrate spring flowers, and a whist drive will be held on March 23 (all potholes on road to hall have been filled in).

Turn to page 40

From page 39


Maxton Meets

The next talk in the Maxton Meets series is on March 14 in the village hall, starting at 7.30pm. This will be an audio-visual presentation by Eckford-based Well Road Productions on “The Life and Work of the Border Poet Will H. Ogilvie (1869–1963)”. Admission £1.50 (includes tea/ coffee and biscuits).


Literary society

At the next meeting on Tuesday, March 8, speaker is Douglas Gifford, emeritus professor of Scottish literature at Glasgow University. His topic is “Barries’ farewell – and farewell to Miss Julie Logan”, a reference to his last full-length piece of prose. Douglas is well-known in the area, being honorary librarian at Abbotsford and speaking to the society on various writers since 1997. The meeting will be at 7.30pm upstairs in the Ormiston Institute. Non-members welcome (£3 admission). Further information from Peter Hoad, secretary, at [email protected]

Parish church

Church magazine, with appeal, available for delivery; World Day of Prayer service in Holy Trinity on March 4 at 2.30pm; Big Fairtrade Breakfast at the Ormiston on March 5; March 6 – Mothering Sunday services at Bowden (9.30am) and Melrose (10am and 11am); March 11 – Travelling by Tuba; March 15 – kirk session.


Dr John Reid, chairman, lectured on Burnswark in the Senate House of London University on February 27 as part of the Current Archaeology conference. A Burnswark Travelling Exhibition will be touring the Borders during the year. Dr Reid will be giving the talk in the Corn Exchange on April 21. It is hoped that the Trimontium season will start on March 28, when the museum will reopen and first Old Melrose Walk takes place.



Members meet in the institute on March 9 at 7.15pm when Pete Jamieson will talk about photography. Competitions – small photograph frame and a photograph of a child.

Coffee morning

Morebattle in Bloom coffee morning will be held in the institute on March 12 at 10.30am.


Jango Starr presents “One Man Shoe” in the village hall on March 30 at 3pm – a show for children and families. Tickets on sale in the village shop and from John Mabon (01573 440329).

Film club

See Kelso section.


See Kelso section.



“Rapid Departure” is at Oxnam Village Hall on March 10 (7.30pm) in aid of hall funds. Appropriately set in a village hall, this comedy-drama from Right Lines Productions is touring Scotland and carries a serious message that is highly relevant following recent weather events. Suitable for all the family, it is and supported by SBC Borders Live Touring and SEPA. Tickets from 01835 840284. See www.oxnamvillagehall.org.uk for more details.

st boswells


Members enjoyed a talk about Breadworks, an organic bakery producing artisan bread, and Green Works, a gardening and woodwork service based in Tweedbank. The meeting learned about their provision of training and work experiences for adults with learning disabilities, enabling them to gain skills required for employment. Competitions – fruit loaf – Mrs Ainslie; item beginning with A – Mrs Ingles. Hostesses Mrs Gray and Mrs Redpath served supper. The next meeting is on March 8 in the village hall at 7.30pm, featuring a talk by Pauline Birse of the Lavender Touch. Competitions – hand-made lavender bag and lavender-coloured item.



A quiz night will be held in the village hall on March 11, starting at 7.30pm. Supper will be provided and there is also a bar, plus raffle and quiz prizes. Admission is £10 per team of four.

The Unknown Soldier

On March 9 at 7.30pm in the village hall, Grist To The Mill will be presenting The Unknown Soldier, a new play from award-winning writer Ross Ericson. It is a story of comradeship, betrayal and promises, both broken and kept, following the carnage of the First World War. This is one of only two performances in the Borders following success at the Edinburgh Fringe. The production is supported by Borders Live Touring. Tickets – 01573 470707.



The next service in Traquair Kirk will be on March 13 at 10am.



The next service in Walkerburn Public Hall will be on March 20.



Tickets are on sale at the village shop for a Wauchope Hall concert of music by Claire Hastings, BBC Scotland Young Musician of the Year 2015, on March 5 at 7.30pm.

Festival committee

A meeting of the festival committee will take place on March 7 at 7.30pm in the Youth Hall.


There will be coffee in Yetholm Church on March 9 at 10.30am.


Yetholm Village Choir continues to meet every Wednesday at 10.30am in Youth Hall. New members always welcome.

Film club

See Kelso section.


See Kelso section.