Earlston pupils bank on feeding the less fortunate

Fifth-year pupils from Earlston High School with items for the foodbank at St Paul's Church in Galashiels. The teachers at the back are Andy Simpson and Jen Thomson. The Reverend Duncan McCosh is also in the picture. Pupils and staff were set a challenge to collect 1,100 items (to reflect the number of staff and students in the school) for the foodbank.

Thursday, 5th January 2017, 12:07 pm
Updated Monday, 9th January 2017, 11:41 am



Quiz cash

A quiz held at the Horse and Hound attracted a total of 22 teams and raised the excellent sum of £353 for Rulewater Bowling Club.


Camera group

The camera group restarts next Monday, January 9, in the village hall starting at 7.30pm when members shall consider ‘macrophotography’. They should bring images of trees for the second half of the evening. Visitors and friends welcome.


Parish church

The congregation led the Nine Lessons and Carols service on Sunday. Catriona Bird introduced the service, while lessons were read by Margaret Blyth, Jo Lawson, Fay Brydon (2), Frances Pringle, Fiona McDougal, Bill Birch, Roddy Beatson and Atholl Innes. Prayers were said by Mrs Bird, Miss Pringle and Mr Birch, and Mr Innes led the prayer of dedication for the offering. Music was played by Andy and Mrs Bird and Mrs McDougal. The retiring collection for the work of Oasis, a charity which helps child refugees in this country, at the watchnight service raised £200.


Parish church

On Sunday, January 8, the service at 10.15am will be conducted by the Reverend Julie Rennick.

Women’s Group

Members meet tonight (Thursday) in the church hall at 8pm when Lorna Milligan speaks on ‘Nursing in the Middle East’.


Burns supper

A Macmillan Burns supper will take place in Kirkhope Hall on Saturday, January 21, at 7 for 7.30pm. Tickets are available from Marjory Tennant (01750 62327) or any member of the charity’s local committee.

Hall fund-raiser

The first village hall fund-raiser of the new year will take place on Sunday, January 8, from 11.30am-1.30pm in the hall – £5 a head will buy a plate of home-made soup and a sweet.


Rotary club

Despite terrible weather earlier in the day, the rain stopped for the Christmas Eve carol service which drew a large crowd, singing loudly to the accompaniment of the town band. Duncan McCosh led the service and donations resulted in more than £300 going to to dementia support. Looking back over 2016, Rotarians entertained around 90 residents from local sheltered housing to lunch in April. The Summer Fun Day in August was less successful and the club is looking at other ideas for the summer. Three Galashiels Academy students were sent to camps – two to an outdoor activities and team building one beside Loch Tay, and te other to Challenge Enterprise, a business-orientated weekend. For the first time, the club sponsored an art competition for Academy students, working with the studio club. There was no response to the primary school quiz, so it will not be held in 2017. Internationally, two ShelterBoxes were bought to support people in need after major disasters. Each box holds a family-sized tent, cooking sets, solar lights, activity sets for children and other essentials. Members, working with the Rotary Club of Karachi, also facilitated the acquisition and delivery of 10 redundant healthcare trailers to Pakistan. These will be used to provide screening and treatment facilities in remote areas. Throughout the year, the club used Facebook to inform the Galashiels community of various events, useful information, weather threats and much more, shared from many local sources. Rotarians held their Christmas market at the end of November. The plan to extend it across the town centre did not attract the expected public interest and it will be confined to a smaller area in 2017. In December, Santa visited the area again, first to Tweedbank school, supported by the parent council, then to Balmoral with help from Niki’s Bar.



A whist drive, including supper, will be held on Monday, January 9, starting at 7.30pm.

Lunch club

The next gathering is on Wednesday, January 11, from 11.30am-1.30pm.


The old-time and ceildh dance class restarts on Thursday, January 12, at 8pm, with a Reel Half Hour beginning 30 minutes’ earlier. A dance will be held on Saturday, January 14, with Stuart Anderson providing the music – bring your own supper and a bottle (tea/coffee provided).



A service will be held on Sunday, January 8, at 11.30am in Innerleithen Church, followed by a light lunch in the Hall of Friendship.

Countdown Club

Meetings on January 11 and 25 at 10.30am in Innerleithen Church Hall of Friendship.


Historical society

The next meeting – open to the public – is on January 12, at 7.30pm in the Royal British Legion when Norrie McLeish will speak about “The Great Hawick Election Riot of 1837”. At the last meeting, Nigel McMurray delivered an illustrated talk on the Border abbeys.



The next meeting of the Four Border Abbeys U3A group will be held this coming Monday, January 9, at 2pm in Kelso Rugby Club when Charles Burnett will speak about “Honours of Scotland”. Visitors are welcome – tea and coffee available. For more information, go to www.u3asites.org.uk/fourborderabbeys


Kelso Horticultural Society’s annual general meeting will be held on Wednesday, January 18, at 7pm in the Tait Hall. All welcome.



One of the more recent common riding traditions which began back in 2007 and has been collaborated between the Initiative and Border Fine Arts (BFA,) has come to an end with the demise of the latter. Each year a figurine was produced of the Cornet and his horse with the colours of that year. It started when Andrew Johnstone was the principal and each year since all the Cornets have received the unique gift. Now that the company has been closed, the figurine is no longer available, however, Border Fine Arts has agreed to give one horse, painted in gold, to the town. Ray Ayres, BFA’s creative director, presented the figurine to common riding officiating magistrate David Stevenson in the Welcome to Langholm Information Hub. The horse will form part of a display about BFA and its history and what it meant to the town.

Christmas tree

Revellers were able to see in the New Year round the Christmas tree in front of the town hall – but it was not all plain sailing. The tree came crashing down during the recent Storm Barbara, but fortunately did not cause any damage or injury. However, the tree lay on the ground over Christmas and it was only a few days before the New Year that it was put back up and lighten up once more. The crowds were able to gather with the pipe band around the tree on Auld Year’s Night.



Channelkirk and Lauder Guild’s January meeting is on Wednesday, the 11th, at 2.30pm in the church centre, Lauder. This is a Songs of Praise afternoon. The guild holds coffee mornings in Lauder church centre on first Saturday of the month, from 10-11.30am.

Burns supper

Channelkirk and Lauder Church Burns supper is on Friday, January 20, at The Lodge, Carfraemill. Tickets from Ian Brotherston.


The Scotch Night, featuring local talent, is on Friday, January 20, 7 for 7.30pm, in the Lauderdale Hotel. Names to Sheila Hardie (718657) asap, or by Tuesday, January 10. Competitions – three dropped scones and a whisky glass.


Worship will be celebrated by the Reverend Rae Clark on Sunday, January 8, at Oxton Memorial Hall (10am) and Lauder Church (11.30am). On the last Sunday of the month at 2.30pm, a short service will be held at South Garden, Lauder, while on the first Sunday of the month in Lauder Church, an all-age service, with the praise band providing music, will be held from 11am. New musicians are welcome – just turn up on the day. The Mums 4 Mums group meets in the church centre each Wednesday from 9.30am, with the art group gathering in the same venue from 9.30am every Thursday. The prayer group meets in Lauder Church each Friday from 2pm, while on the same day and venue, at 4pm, the church choir congregates for practice.


Literary society

The next meeting is on Tuesday, January 10, featuring a talk by Ian Fraser on ‘[Shredded: Inside RBS, The Bank That Broke Britain’, a book which draws on interviews with more than 120 current and former RBS insiders, advisers and others. Ian is an experienced journalist, commentator and broadcaster, so his presentation should provide a fascinating insight into how investigative journalism is done, from initial research to getting material published. The meeting starts at 7.30pm, upstairs in the Ormiston Institute. Non-members welcome, for an admission fee of £3.

Parish church

New Year’s Day services were held at Bowden and Melrose. The sum of £1,650 was realised at the Christmas services for the Bethlehem and Malawi charities. Ongoing foodbank contributions are welcome. Both services on Sunday, January 8, will be led by the Very Reverend D. Arnott. The kirk session meets on Thursday, January 12. On Sunday, January 15, a united service will be held at Melrose (11am) with the Reverend Rosie Frew, sole nominee for vacancy. It is important for members to attend for voting.


The close season is anything but. Currently, insurers are putting pressure on national and local museums to upgrade their security arrangements, and Melrose is no exception. Doors, windows and entry facilities used by supervisors are all under scrutiny. Without constant and guaranteed attention to duty, the more important items loaned each season up to now from central sources will simply not be forthcoming. It involves the trust in extra expenditure which cannot be avoided, but allows displays to go on for the benefit of the public.



Members meet in the institute on Wednesday, January 11, at 7.15pm when Lynn Young will take them through their paces for a keep-fit exercise night. Competitions – home-made card a favourite pen.



At the December meeting, members enjoyed a meal at Hunter’s Stables, the new restaurant in the village. The first meeting of 2017 is on Tuesday, January 10, at 7.30pm in the village hall when Kirsten Johnston will give a papercraft demonstration. Competitions – a slice of Christmas cake and a pretty cup and saucer.


Kirk service

A service will be held on Sunday, January 8, at 10am.



The next service in Walkerburn Public Hall will be on Sunday, January 15, at 10 am.



Yarrowford SWI held its Christmas meal with members providing the food and a Secret Santa. Two long-serving members, Betty Fraser and Jean Scott, were surprised to be presented with honorary membership certificates by president Annie Coltherd. After the meal and presentation, there was a Christmas wreath-making workshop. The next meeting is on Tuesday, January 10, and features a talk on oil rig nursing. Competitions – three truffles and a favourite Christmas decoration.


Film night

The first film of 2017 will be shown on Saturday, January 7, at 7pm in the Wauchope Hall. On screen will be The Danish Girl (15) – doors open at 6.30pm.

Festival meeting

The next festival meeting is on Monday, January 9, at 7.30pm in the Youth Hall. All are welcome to help plan this year’s festival.


Wauchope Hall trustees will meet on Tuesday, January 10, in the Wauchope Hall. The meeting starts at 7pm.

Coffee time

Coffee at Church will be on Wednesday, January 11, at 10.30am in the village kirk.


A quiz night will be held on Wednesday, January 11, at 8pm in the Plough Hotel. Proceeds from this event will go towards the Macmillan cancer charity.


The badminton, bowling, village choir, Scrabble and Scottish country dance groups recommence at their usual times and days during the week beginning Monday, January 9. New members are always welcome to any of the above.