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Hirsel Estate, Coldstream
Hirsel Estate, Coldstream

This image of the Hirsel estate, Coldstream, was taken last Thursday by Alex McSorley from St Boswells.

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Like Jim Clark, I was born in Fife, but spent my early years during the war in Berwickshire.

I started school at Chirnside primary in 1944. Jim, four years older than me, was already a pupil. I can say that I was at school with Jim Clark – however, I was a wee boy, while he was a big boy. I cannot say I knew the boy nor the man.

Last weekend was a glorious one for Duns and Chirnside. Doug Niven, of the Jim Clark Trust, and Annette Scobie and Linda Gray, of the Chirnside Common Good Association, with their respective armies of volunteers, are to be congratulated on a magnificent effort.

I can’t think of another public personality who would generate such affection, admiration and memories 50 years after their death.

Jim Clark won the world driving championship in 1963 and 1965. In 1965 he did not drive in the Monaco Grand Prix as he was off winning the Indianapolis 500. During the 1960s grand prix drivers did not earn millions driving in Formula 1 and had to supplement their income by driving in other races when there was no Grand Prix. Indeed, Jim Clark died in a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim on April 7, 1968

He never forgot his Border roots.

In life and death, his accomplishments have brought people from around the world to Duns and Chirnside. The Scottish Government and Scottish Borders Council must support the efforts of local volunteers.

Clive Chapman, son of Colin Chapman, was astonished at the memorabilia laid out in Chirnside Community Hall. These treasured items told the tale of the symbiotic relationship between his father and Jim Clark. Colin Chapman was a genius at designing a racing car, and Jim Clark was a genius behind the steering wheel. Together they conquered the world.

These treasures must not be allowed to be scattered to the four winds after the event. They deserve to be on display in Chirnside where visitors can share Clive Chapman’s surprise and wonder. This is particularly important during the time the Jim Clark Room in Duns is closed for remodelling and expansion.

People will continue to arrive in the area wanting to share in the reflected glory of our own timeless world champion.

The various levels of Scottish Government should make sure these visitors are properly entertained and educated during their visit.

John Black

The Scottish Jacobite Party



I would like to thank all those who came along to our exhibition to support our special 50th anniversary event for Jim Clark in Chirnside.

We were pleased to welcome visitors from all over the world, and were delighted by the number of people who came along to enjoy our exhibition over the three days.

I would also like to thank our volunteer stewards and marshalls, the WRI and Chirnside Chasers for providing coffees, teas and excellent home baking in the community centre, The Beacon for opening at the weekend and Marie’s Fish and Chicken Bar for catering at the opening free of charge.

Without the support of our funders and sponsors, those willing to lend items from personal collections and those who have shared their memories for our audio visual project, this exhibition would not have been possible.

Annette Scobie

(chairperson, Chirnside

Common Good Association)


Chirnside people are incredibly proud of their association with Jim Clark, not only because of his remarkable motor racing achievements, but also because he was very much part of Berwickshire life.

Along with memories of races and titles, there are those whose connection to Jim was very ordinary, and they regarded him as a friend who was lost too soon. This personal and local connection formed the heart of a unique exhibition in the community centre last weekend.

Chirnside Common Good Association set up a small group and worked tirelessly for over a year to create an event which captured not only his achievements, but also the essence of the man.

The result was the recording of some very personal memories, as well as an opportunity to view unseen archive material which had remained in private collections, and which may never again be on public display.

The working group knew how they wanted to mark the 50th anniversary, and succeeded in portraying Jim’s life both as a racing driver and Berwickshire farmer.

This exhibition exceeded all expectations. It was visited by hundreds of motor racing enthusiasts (some returned each day) who found the items on display both fascinating and moving. From audio recollections to a fantastic model created by Chirnside Primary School children, personal memorabilia and paintings, books and photos, there was a wealth of material on display, which captured Jim’s life in exactly the way they wanted.

The association would like to thank everybody who supported it – sponsors, volunteers, marshalls, funding bodies and local businesses whose contribution made the event possible. I would also like to thank the association’s small, but tenacious working group for their hard work and dedication. They created an event which became the focus of the commemorative weekend, and which will not only live long in the memories of those who attended, but will highlight Jim’s achievements to a whole new generation.

Susan Swan

Harelaw Farm



Can I thank everyone who came to help me after my accident in the snow on Friday, March 3.

To my neighbours, passing motorists, the ambulance service who battled through the snow, everyone who cleared the snow so the ambulance could get through and last, but not least, Borders General Hospital for all the care I received.

While many criticise the NHS, I have only praise for those who work for it.

Mrs M. Whitehead



On Saturday, March 31, Friends of the Knoll held a very successful coffee morning.

In spite of horrendous weather, the sum of £393.30 was raised.

I would like to thank those who baked, provided raffle prizes, helped on the day and braved the elements to attend.

Anne Cummins