Thirty years ago this spring two ladies joined together to start up a Scottish Borders Farm Women’s Club – they were Moira Bruce and the late Jean Fleming.
Both ladies each invited three friends namely Lillian Fleming, Blitz Smith, Marie Kerr, Margaret Shaw, Cathy Donaldson and Betty Dagg (now Williams) to their first meeting which was a lunch at Dryburgh Abbey Hotel and then a visit to Smailholm Tower.
At the group’s May meeting club member Christine Watson made a beautiful cake to commemorate this anniversary and it was cut by founding member Moira Bruce.
Club organiser Peggy Thomson said: “Thirty years may not seem to be a great feat but there will be very few clubs in the Borders who have seven of the eight original members who still regularly attend meetings and support their club after all that time. Five of those members attended the anniversary.
“Originally the club was affiliated to the Farmers Weekly and another lady who has done much for the club is Netta Harvey who was organiser for ten years and travelled widely to attend AGM’s and had to file reports of meetings and proposed meetings timeously to the Farmers Weekly.”
Early meetings were held in people’s homes, village halls or were visits to interesting venues – e.g. a trip down the River Tyne; visit to Buckingham Palace; visit to the Scottish Antique Centre at Doune and a walk down the Royal Mile guided by Marie Kerr.
Meetings over the years have also included demonstrations of homeopathy, jewellery by Pat Young, hats by Averil of Hawick, felting and skittles at Kelso and many more.
From these early beginnings the club now has 55 members and monthly meetings in recent years have been held in the Buccleuch Hotel, St Boswells, with a light lunch followed by a speaker or demonstrator.