Elba Footbridge at Edin's Hall Broch
Elba Footbridge at Edin's Hall Broch
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SNP centralising power in Edinburgh

SIR, - Much like many of the arguments put forward by the SNP, Richard Walthew would do well to check his facts before putting pen to paper.

A quick check on Wikipedia reveals the population of Kent to be 1,684,200 whereas the population of Scotland is 5,254,800. (Both figures 2011 estimates.) Yet Mr Walthew claims there are more voters in Kent than people in the whole of Scotland!

His claim that with independence decision-making will be brought closer to the people is also not borne out by recent evidence. There has been a spate of cases recently both in the Scottish Borders and East Lothian where decisions made by the council elected by local voters have been overturned by the Holyrood government. Surely local people should have decided whether to allow wind farm developments at Drone Hill, Hoprigshiels and Feneylea or the incinerator application at Oxwellmains.

Unfortunately these proposals though rejected by the democratic process are key to the SNP’s so-called energy policy and so had to be allowed whatever voters said. It seems SNP policy is more about centralising power in Edinburgh than allowing local people in local communities to make decisions.



Festival a big success

SIR, - We would like to extend our deepest thanks and appreciation to the volunteers, helpers and those who contributed in any way to making the Storytelling Festival at Gunsgreen House on Saturday, October 20, such a great success.

Thank you also to all the lovely children and their parents/grandparents who came along on the day. The turnout exceeded all our expectations with local storytelling fans alongside some from as far away as Italy coming along on the day.

Special thanks go to Marjorie Leithead who organised the event, and booked the fantastic professional storytellers who performed on the day. Also to Kerry and Sophie at pocketful in Eyemouth, who sold tickets and gave up their time to perform on the day.

We could not have put on the event without the greatly valued support of Enterprise Music Scotland, the Eyemouth & District Chamber of Trade, the Berwickshire Association of Voluntary Service and Cockburnspath and Cove Community Council Benefits Fund. Without their support this event would not have been able to go ahead. We have been receiving some wonderful feedback from the event. It’s great to see the traditional art of storytelling so enjoyed and supported, and we are proud to have been able to host this event for people in the area to enjoy.

We hope to repeat the event next year, so watch this space!



Charity sheepdog trails

SIR, - I would like to thank everyone who attended the charity trial in aid of The Multiple Sclerosis Society at Stobswood, Duns on Saturday, October 20.

All the handlers who made it a success and the following companies who generously donated prizes and money towards it: Carrs Billington, Harbro, Merlin Vet Group, Pearson’s of Duns, Tesco’s and Morrisons supermarket’s for donating towards the catering. Also the many people who so generously gave cash donations and raffle prizes from all around the UK.

An especially big thank you to the Rodger family at Stobswood for the use of the field and sheep; my parents who came down from the Isle of Skye to do the catering with homemade produce and also Jean and Charlie Scott who helped out on the day.

The judge Ian Lansborough from Roxburgh Mains, Kelso, did a very good job of judging an extremely hard trial with only six dogs finishing.

We would also like to thank ‘The Berwickshire News’ for an extremely well written article.

The total raised so far to date is an incredible £710 with more still to come in.



Successful event

SIR, - On behalf of the Ayton Enhancement Group I would like to thank all the people who generously contributed to the recent plant sale and coffee morning on October 27, making it a very successful event. A total of £375 was raised, to help fund our improvement programme for next year.



Coldingham Bookshop

SIR, - The committee would like to thank all those who continue to support and donate books to this worthwhile cause. Since opening in early 2003 we have raised in excess of £23,000, given grants to 37 local projects with others pending and this year producing the fourth reprint of our very popular free walks booklet. Our thanks also go to a local businessman who made a generious donation towards the considerable printing costs. Our winter opening hours are Saturdays 11am to 3pm which are run by our 13 volunteers.


The Grange,


Action Research

SIR, - The Eyemouth Action Research Committee would like to thank everyone who took part, and attended the musical evening in Eyemouth Parish Church, and also Margaret Carey who arranged this wonderful evening. The sum of £160 was raised. Our annual coffee morning is on November 10 in the Masons Hall and we look forward to seeing you all there.


Eyemouth Action Research ‘

Duns Probus Club

SIR, - May I, through your column take this opportunity to thank the community of Duns for attending the Duns Probus Club’s annual coffee morning in Duns Parish Church, on Saturday, October 20.

A special thank you must go to all committee and church members for setting up and making teas and coffee and all those members who worked tirelessly in the kitchen.

A vast array of raffle prizes was generously donated by club members including a baking sales table baked specially by wives of members who gave their support to sell their produce. The successful day was due to an excellent turnout and the club is grateful for their magnificent support. An overall collection of £670 will be allocated to local charities in our area.


Duns Probus Club president.

The Margaret Hope Memorial Cup

SIR, - I would like to express my sincere thanks to all those people who attended a charity darts night in the Eildon Centre, Coldstream on Saturday, October 20, for the second playing of the Margaret Hope Memorial Cup.

We were over joyed at how many people made the effort to attend (not all playing) to make the night such a big success with £350 raised through entry money and the grand raffle.

Many thanks to all those individuals and businesses who donated the many raffle prizes and all those who on the night helped with the running of the competition and selling raffle tickets. Congratulations to Caroline Robison and Richard Thinwell on winning, and hard luck Amy Lees and Ian Turnbull, the beaten finalists. A cheque for £350 will be donated to Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland in Margaret’s memory.


High Street,


Fireworks scare pets

SIR, - What takes over people who think it is acceptable to enter someone’s back garden at night (in Brierybaulk) on Sunday, November 4, and set off a rocket – you should be ashamed of yourself. I presume this was to scare the pets - and it worked. You could have at least taken your rubbish with you. Time to call for tougher licensing laws for fireworks?