NEWS, INFORMATION & WHAT’S ON IN GATEHOUSE OF FLEET | Winter 2013
From the Editor
Autumn Harvest Festival
It is not surprising that the winter edition of the Newsletter carries rather less text than the Spring and Summer versions, which has given us space to include rather more photographic material than usual. Attention must be drawn to the Provost’s cry for fresh talent to strengthen the Community Council. It was encouraging to find some fresh and energetic faces to the fore to ensure a very successful Gala; perhaps this is a good omen for the future. Gatehouse’s hospitality industry has enjoyed a relatively good summer, thanks to progress with both interior and exterior at the Murray Arms, new services and menus at Galloway Lodge, the popular Riverside Café at the Mill, the enlarged Restaurant at the Bank of Fleet, and a steady flow of investment in the interior, exterior and staffing at the Masonic Arms (if you haven’t yet admired the completely restored Masonic Coat of Arms in Ann Street, you have missed something significant for Gatehouse). As part of my Newsletter commitment, I am the channel for new and updated entries to the Clubs and Societies list (distributed with the Spring edition), and “What’s On” (the online community diary), and I hope that the flow of material will continue to grow, that greater and greater use will be made of this valuable reference document and that even those without personal access to a computer can find ways through friends or other sources to make full use of these listings. Many thanks to all our regular contributors and the Compliments of the Season to one and all!
On Saturday 19th October the Country Market in Gatehouse of Fleet hosted a series of events that aimed to highlight and celebrate local produce. As part of this Autumn Harvest Festival people were invited to “Taste, Create, and Celebrate This Season’s Food”, both locally grown and foraged. One of the main events was a wild food walk led by Mark Williams, of Galloway Wild Foods. The group set off in heavy rain for a walk around the Cally Woods, learning about and collecting the edible autumn plants, fruit and fungi freely available. One of the many advantages of foraging Mark points out is that “it’s free food that’s in season and organic, that you’ve picked yourself. It benefits from having no packaging, no transport costs and is around us all the time, if we know what to look for. So it’s better for us and it’s better for the environment.” As one man on the walk points out: “there’s something really important about knowing what is out there, in nature, and foraging is one way that connects us”. The walk ended with a cooking demonstration and tasting by Mark. The Autumn Harvest Festival also included apple pressing. Apples from local fruit trees that had either been donated, collected by volunteers, or brought along on the day, were crushed and pressed. This demonstrated how local food that may have otherwise been wasted can be used to make a delicious and nutritious drink. Both adults and children enjoyed making the apple juice as well as tasting it. And there was a chance to taste delicious food made with locally grown produce
such as Pumpkin Soup and Marrow Jam, as well as Pumpkin Jam that had been cooked outdoors by children at Gatehouse Primary. A display of pictures showed a forage the previous week at Cardoness Beach and of Autumn Harvest photographs taken by primary school children as part of the “Fun Outdoors” after-school club. And there were recipes for using Autumn nuts, fruit, fungi and roots, all to get people thinking and talking about the origins of their food and drink, and asking important questions about what they buy and its relationship with our local natural resources. Thanks to funding from the Co-operative Community Fund, all these events were free, and attracted over 100 people, with both locals and visitors taking part. But many more were reached as a piece about the Wild Food Forage was featured on Border News. We are grateful to everyone who donated apples for the event and to those who volunteered their time - all the hard work paid off in the end and the morning was enjoyed by a wide range of people who all came together to celebrate our local food. For further information about wild food walks contact Mark Williams at Galloway Wild Foods firstname.lastname@example.org “Fun Outdoors”, an after-school group aimed at primary-age children, will continue to meet throughout the winter months on Tuesdays 3pm5pm. Contact Lusi (814810 or lusialderslowe@ gmail.com)
Have your Say Community Council and Gatehouse Development Initiative meetings are open to all.
COMMUNITY COUNCIL 2nd Tuesday of every month, 7pm, Community Centre.
GATEHOUSE DEVELOPMENT INITIATIVE Last Wednesday of every 2nd month, 7.30pm, Community Centre.
Around the Community European Project comes to Gatehouse
Achieving an ever closer union of the peoples of Europe depends on citizens understanding each other and working together. European Life Long Learning projects, funded by the EU, seek to bring people from across Europe together to learn from their shared experience. The Gatehouse Development Initiative (GDI) is now into the second year of a Grundtvig Life Long Learning project called Memoria which brings together partners from Slovakia, Greece, France and Italy, and the GDI. This project is very relevant to Gatehouse, because it is about using our local heritage to make the visitor experience more interesting - important for a town whose economy is so dependent on the welcome it gives to visitors. One of the main benefits of the project is that it is already making us think of more ways in which the local heritage can be used to promote the wellbeing of Gatehouse. Five themes have emerged which are common to each of the partners: the natural heritage; a sacred or religious theme; crafts; local foods; and cultural heritage. The group met in Gatehouse in September, in itself a valuable boost to the local tourist trade. The group was welcomed to the town by Provost Pat Jacques, and Councillor Colin Wyper welcomed them on behalf of Dumfries and Galloway Council. The working language for the group is French, in itself a challenge, as group members had to interpret simultaneously for those who did not speak French. Just making this happen and not saying “We can’t do this!” was also an achievement. The group heard talks about the National Scenic Areas, the tradition of dry stone dyking, the local art heritage and the potential for renewing old pilgrim routes through Galloway. The group enjoyed an evening of Scottish music and song at the Bakehouse and the following day they saw kilts being made at the Kiosk. They visited the covenanters’ grave at Anwoth Kirkyard, the smokehouse at Carsluith, Cairnholy and Barholm Castle, and in the afternoon they went to a gallery in Kirkcudbright and Broughton House, all fine examples of our local heritage. By meeting in the different partner countries the members of the group learn more about each other and will be able to share ideas on how each community can make the most of its local heritage.
Care Cabs – promoting independence through transport and support
An enterprising business concept to promote independence through transport and a high standard of support to individuals with difficulties owes its existence in Gatehouse to the arrival from Aberdeenshire of Donna Mitchell. The service provided by Care Cabs combines transport (a licenced and insured taxi) with a wide range of private and confidential support for people of all ages and levels of difficulty, all at reasonable rates. Donna has a 25-year clean driving licence and 20 years experience in confidential support work, and is already a welcome addition to Gatehouse’s resident population. Her market base extends outside Gatehouse up to 10 miles. The people of Gatehouse should count themselves lucky and proud to have her and her business service among us, and through this Newsletter we wish her well in her new venture. She can be contacted on 07756 319840 or by e-mail on email@example.com.
Locals will be aware of a project to collect old school photographs and to annotate them with names. These have recently been added to a new history website: www.gatehouse-folk.org.uk which has been developed to make this sort of information publicly available. The website also has a major database of all soldiers, sailors and nurses from this area who took part in the First World War. There are links to a sister website which contains photographs and transcriptions of gravestones at Girthon & Anwoth graveyards. A start has been made on displaying a range of old Gatehouse and district postcards. This is an ongoing project and the website will be added to on a regular basis.
Centenary Of The Outbreak Of The First World War – August 2014
Backed by the local Branch of the Royal British Scotland, and with special thanks for the work of Margaret and Graham Wright, an exhibition to commemorate the people of Gatehouse and District who went to the war will be staged in the Faed Gallery of the Mill on the Fleet in August next year. Former ly known as Thirty four salon
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The exhibition will explain the nature of the conflict, the nations involved and key dates, with particular reference to the men and women from Gatehouse and the surrounding districts of Ringford, Twynholm and Borgue who served their country in any capacity. Graham and Margaret have already done very considerable research in this field (see previous article) Much of the information contained in the website was provided by local people who had relatives who went off to the war. This data is all recorded, but if any of our readers have any further information, stories, photographs or memorabilia they would like to share with the wider community please contact either the British Legion Chairman, Michael Ashmore, on 814884 or the Wrights on 815022. Among the recently discovered collection of glass plates taken by the Gatehouse photographer William McMurray is a photograph of a troop of horse in the field which is now the car park opposite the entrance to the Mill on the Fleet. We are publishing this in the hope that it will encourage and make possible a wider collection of military or related photographs for the exhibition next year.
The public seating in and round the town was surveyed late last year with a view to being refurbished as they were in a poor condition. It became apparent that two of them were of a different design and material from the other seats. It turned out that they were specially made by the local blacksmith, Mr Willie Mackay, for the Town Council to commemorate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth in 1953. In the condition they were in they needed more than just a coat of paint if they were to last another sixty years. These seats are of heritage value to the town and as such, it was decided that they should be conserved so
as to remain in good condition well into the future. As the Dumfries & Galloway Council’s budget only allowed for a coat of paint, the Gatehouse Development Initiative were approached and agreed to provide funds for these seats to be treated in such a manner as to provide a permanent coating which would last many years without regular treatment. The D&G Council agreed to have the work carried out to the specification set down by the GDI. The Queen succeeded to the throne on 6th February 1952 and was crowned on 2nd June 1953. At the June 1953 Town Council meeting it was announced that from the funds raised for the coronation celebrations there was a balance of £20. After a lengthy discussion it was agreed that “it be utilised in improving the amenities of the burgh by the provision of two seats.” At the July meeting the members decided to have one placed on the Kirkcudbright road opposite the entrance to the Cally Hotel and the other on the Dromore road above the top entrance to the Riverbank scheme. A plaque would be attached to each seat and experience of other authorities was that iron seats were ideal as wooden seats were liable to be abused by children and others carving their names on them. The seats were removed from site and taken to Cumbernauld to be shotblasted, galvanised and powder coated. A plaque was obtained for each seat, with the wording as follows. This seat was installed by the Gatehouse of Fleet Town Council in 1953 to commemorate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth. It was refurbished in 2013 by the Dumfries & Galloway Council with the support of the Gatehouse Development Initiative. The photograph is of Mrs Annie Mackay, widow of Willie who made the seats, sitting on the newly refurbished seat.
Old photographs shed new light on Gatehouse
In the first decades of the twentieth century Gatehouse postman William McMurray was also a keen photographer, who captured images of people and places around Gatehouse on his glass plate camera. Amazingly these glass plates illustrating daily life in our community a hundred years ago survived in his home in Catherine Street. When his daughter died in 2012, the glass plates were deposited for safe-keeping in the Stewartry Museum. Permission was kindly given to the Gatehouse Development Initiative to process the plates with a view to them being used for the benefit of the local community. Several hundred images have now been processed and the next task is to put a name to the places and people captured on glass all these years ago. This will be no easy matter for there are no names on any of the plates. Some of the images are of well-known buildings, both large and small around the town and in the countryside but some are of buildings which no longer exist. Others are of individuals and groups who came to William’s house to be photographed or were photographed by their own home. There are photographs of members of the armed forces, which will be used in the exhibition about Gatehouse and the First World War scheduled for next summer. There are photographs of prize horses and of various types of horse transport but
there are also photographs of cyclists and the early days of motor transport. Over the next few months there will be an opportunity for people to see the first of these photographs and we hope a group can get together to look more closely at the images. It would be great to be able to produce a book of Gatehouse images 100 years ago.
A view which has changed. Looking across the Mill Pond from Back Neilson.
A group of boys with dumb bells. Does anyone recognise anyone in this photo?
Masonic Arms to set new Standards
The new Master of the Masonic Arms, Richard Gidney, aims to restore one of Gatehouse’s premier historic buildings and to accompany it with a high standard of service in its bar and restaurant. He has already commissioned leading artist and conservation expert Joseph Sherrer who has recently completed a full scale restoration of the original Coat of Arms above the main door, shown here. Plans are in hand for further improvements and for some exciting new developments in the range of cuisine. Watch this space - Spanish Nights are on their way soon! And look out for a major feature on the Masonic in our Spring Newsletter!
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Entertainment, Leisure & Culture Gatehouse Christmas Lights Group
A glance back at a successful Horticultural Society Show…
This year’s Christmas Market and Lights Switch On will take place in the Mill on the Fleet grounds on Sunday 1st December between 4pm and 6.30pm. Miss Gatehouse will officially switch on this year’s lights once again. There will be entertainment from Creetown Silver Band as well as others, a visit from Santa Claus and a brand new Children’s Fancy Dress Competition. We will also be holding our Grand Prize Draw; tickets are available to buy now, throughout the town. Once again there are some amazing prizes to be won. There will be many wonderful stalls selling all sorts of delightful wares including handmade jewellery, woodcrafts, leather crafts, tasty cakes, homemade preserves, delicious hot food and so much more. Please see posters for further details. Get your festive season off to a great start by coming along and soaking up the atmosphere of this wonderful community event. The DECORATED WINDOW competition will take place again this year. To be eligible to enter you must have a Gatehouse postcode, complete an entry form which can be collected from local shops and decorate a window in your home and have it ready and on display from Friday 13th December until Friday 3rd January. The winning window entry will receive a truly amazing family hamper. The committee would like to thank the local community and businesses for their continued support and ask if anyone is able to spare an hour of their time to help with the putting up of the trees and helping erect the market to please contact gatehouselights@btinternet. com or contact us through our Facebook page. Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
Gatehouse Monday Club
August 31st may seem a while back, but the Show was a successful climax to some excellent summer weather when Mr Frank Maycock opened the proceedings and presented prizes. Entries at 761 were well up on the previous year, with numerous blooms on display; Cut Flower Judge Mr Roy Bell had some hard decisions to make. A new Salver for most points in Cut Flowers was donated by Mrs Nancy Armstrong in memory of her dear parents Beatrice and Tom Clark: this was won by Mrs May Lockhart with wonderful displays. Mr Joe Proudlock took the Mrs Blenkin prize for the Most Meritorious Vegetable: no surprise as Joe knows his onions! In the Baking section Mrs Margaret Torrance took the Carr’s Flour Prize for the best loaf made in a breadmaker. Well done to the numerous entries in the children’s section, especially to Matthew Hind who was presented with three trophies, a super result. Kind weather and a high number of entries made for a good show which should inspire future enthusiastic support for a wonderful community effort. Gatehouse remains justly proud of its Horticultural Society. Many thanks to supporters and spectators alike!
Royal Scottish Country Dance Society
Meetings are held on alternate Mondays in the Praish Church Hall throughout the winter season. Enjoy sociable afternoons of talks, games, refreshments and chat among people of all ages. Contact Kate Benney for further information on 01557 814134.
On Monday evenings the sound of Scottish dancing is heard in the Roman Catholic Church hall. The weekly dance group meets at 7.30pm under the guidance of Moira Stacey who shows us the way and we do our best to follow her lead. The group welcomes eve-
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ryone looking for gentle exercise and good company – phone Keith Stacey (339308) for more information. On Jan 26th there will be a joint Burns Supper Dance with friends in Kirkcudbright with music by Marian Anderson. Tickets available from Fiona Carpenter (814432) at £12.50 including supper or £10 for the dance only.
Gatehouse Scottish Country Dancers
We look forward to our Annual Dance on Saturday December 7th in the School Hall. Tickets remain at £8 for dancers and £4 for spectators, with a lively band and supper included. This year we celebrate 60 years of Scottish Country dancing in Gatehouse, so a special anniversary cake will be part of the supper. Monday classes will resume on Monday January 8th 2014, from 7.30pm to 9.30pm in the Community Centre. Contact Carol Clark 814259 or Ute Weber 814476.
The Gatehouse Singers
Following the resumption of regular weekly rehearsals in September, the choir has got off to an excellent start this season, under the guidance of Helen Keating who took up the position of Music Director during the Summer. So far, we have been concentrating mainly on preparing for our Carol Concert, on Thursday 12th December, at 7.30pm in Gatehouse Parish Church. (Please note this is one day earlier than previously intimated, to avoid clashes with other events.) Although many of the carols have been performed by the choir in the past, there are some that are less familiar and present an exciting challenge. As well as the choir items, there will also be some readings, and a number of well-known traditional carols for the audience to join in, lustily we hope! If you would like to gain a sneak preview, the choir will be performing some of the Christmas music in Threave House, on Sunday 8th December, at 3.15pm, during the annual Threave Garden Christmas Open Weekend. In addition to the Christmas repertoire, we have also started to rehearse material for the Spring Concert, scheduled for Friday 11th April 2014. This is likely to have a Victorian theme, and will include part songs and opera choruses by Sullivan and others. At present, Helen Keating is acting as both conductor and accompanist, and this has been working very satisfactorily for the rehearsals. However, for the concerts themselves and for the final rehearsals, she will be joined by her husband Geoff to accompany us on the piano and, for some items, on the fine new digital organ installed in the Church earlier this year. Tickets for both concerts will be £7.50 and available in advance from choir members, or at the door on the night. Rehearsals are held on Wednesday evenings, from 7.30pm to 9.30pm, in Gatehouse Parish Church Hall. We are always
pleased to welcome new members. If you are interested, please contact either Janet Byrom (01557 330365) or Andy McKean (01557 814887).
Stewartry Flower Club
Details of future demonstration events can be found in the Gatehouse “What’s On” or community diary. They are all at 1.30pm in the Parish Church Hall, and further information can be obtained by e-mailing Stewatryflowerclub@gatehouse of fleet.
Nurture in Nature is open to anybody and is totally free. So if you would like to meet up for a walk in the woods and give your children more chance to explore the great outdoors just turn up on the day with wellies, waterproofs, warm clothes and a packed lunch. Meet at the river entrance to Cally Woods at 10am every Thursday, even through those beautiful cold crisp winter months. For more information contact Karen on 01557 815380 or 07530911578.
Nurture in Nature – an outdoor playgroup for the under 5’s
Nurture in Nature is an outdoor playgroup that meets up every Thursday in the Woods surrounding Gatehouse of Fleet. It was started up to give more opportunities for families, with children up to the age of 5, to meet up outside and to spend time learning, exploring and discovering through play in a natural environment. The importance of spending more time outdoors is well documented and Nurture in Nature offers a chance to do this with a mix of struc-tured activities, free play and child-led exploration. Since its first session on 11th July 2013 the playgroup has met up every week, in rain and shine, during term time and school holidays. After the initial few sessions that were attended by over 30 people, the playgroup now usually sees a few family groups meeting up each week. The group runs from 10am until 2pm but families can come or go during this time to fit into their plans or the routine of their children. We stop to eat lunch together at 12, usually near the Old School House. Each week focuses on a different theme such as a plant, bird, colour or animal and will often include songs, stories, observations and activities around these themes. This offers children a great opportunity to learn through the natural world, from real hands-on experiences. We also have plenty of time for making dens, splashing in puddles, collecting natural toys and, of course, being with friends. Thanks to funding from the Big Lottery’s Communities and Families Fund the group has been able to buy some equipment, books and art materials as well as paying for local storytellers, nature practitioners and musicians to lead many of the sessions from July through to November. Although these led sessions will soon be ending they have been really inspirational to the families. So a very big thank you to Susi ‘Sweetpea’ Woodmass, Denise Brownlee and Lusi Alderslowe, who have all added a flair of magic to the sessions.
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Sport Cricket played in Galloway – The finest Cricket ground in Scotland!
There is no more picturesque setting for what is now one of Scotland’s fastest growing sports than the cricket played in the Cally grounds. Gatehouse is fortunate in providing a home for the development of cricket in the South West and the Galloway Cricket Club is now on the brink of major developments which could drastically lift the game and its supporters to new heights. The Club has two teams: a first XI (Galloway) which competes in the Western District Cricket Club league Division 2, and the Gatehouse XI in Division 4. During the 2013 season Galloway finished third and Gatehouse fifth in their respective leagues. There is also a fast-growing Ladies team who have competed successfully in the Scottish National Leagues and Cup competitions, and there are Junior and Sunday teams. The first part of this appeal is about numbers and is directed at the need for new players, male or female, young or old, between the ages of 12 and 70 (the Club already has some 70-year-olds playing good cricket!) The appeal needs to be heard across the whole of Galloway, so if you are a Gatehouse resident reader of this Newsletter, make sure the message is spread across the wider spectrum of your friends throughout the South West. Would-be players should contact the Chairman Richard Langley or President Dennis Coombs – phone numbers at the end of this article. While cricket is played with bat and ball in the open, good Club facilities at the principal ground are an essential element in the health of the game. The present club house at the Cally ground belongs to a by-gone age, but thanks to some dedicated efforts by a team of volunteers and donors the Club is now in a position to move forward with plans to build a new pavilion with modern facilities. Planning permission has been obtained and the first significant contributions towards a funding target are in place. To get this project off the ground, however, major voluntary effort is needed, in particular: • Volunteers with project management skills.
• Sponsorship and fund-raising effort and experience. • Ideas for making use of a new Pavilion during times when cricket is not being played. • Basic financial management and accounting capability. • All-round willingness to contribute effort of any kind! As in our appeal for new players, this range of skills cannot be found in Gatehouse alone, but must draw on the whole of the South West’s pool of cricket enthusiasts and supporters and we would urge them to come forward by contacting Chairman Richard Langley (01644 450633) or President Dennis Coombs (01557 814404). P.S. You may have missed it, but if not there is a funfilled evening of Jazz raising funds for the Cricket Club in Gatehouse School Hall on the evening of November 29th and tickets are still available!
Fleet Star Football Club
Under the management team of Andrew Davis, Mark Adams and Kenny Shanks the team is progressing nicely. Although second bottom of the league, recent performances have been most encouraging, and if close one-goal defeats can be turned into draws or narrow wins, we will be well up and running. Since the beginning of October twice-weekly training has been held at the new 3G facility at St Cuthberts in Kirkcudbright, where it will continue through the winter months. There is an excellent crop of young players in the squad and mixed with a bit more experience, things are looking good on the player front – fitness levels are good and improvement seen in every game. Saturday October 26th saw the Club playing on Newton Stewart’s new 3G pitch in pouring rain, and come away with an important victory in the Regional Cup (4-3 on penalties after the game ended 4-4 after extra time).Thanks to new playing surfaces being laid at other clubs, we have played the majority of games at home. We are well up to date with only two home league matches and one scheduled home cup tie to play. Fixtures for November are listed
in the Gatehouse “What’s On”. The Club Committee is still running at the minimum numbers level, and is always on the lookout for new Committee Members. Anyone interested should contact Irvine Hannah on 07745 903610. The Club’s Weekly Draws are running along well – the “3 from 20” drawn on a Sunday, and the “Super 7’s” which is based on Saturday fixtures. Anyone wishing to join either or both draws please contact Irvine Hannah or purchase tickets at outlets around the town. The Club wishes everyone a Merry Christmas and prosperous New Year.
Anwoth & Girthon Curling Club
Anwoth & Girthon Curling Club held its AGM during the spring when last season’s winners were presented with their trophies by the Chairman Bobby Carson. The Most notable winner from the season was Keith Maughan, who skipped rinks to victory no fewer than in five club competitions. The new season got under way early in October. Like many clubs and societies around Gatehouse we are actively looking for new members and would like to invite all who may have an interest in curling to join us. You will be able to watch world-class curling during the forthcoming winter Olympics and if these displays of skill and strategy inspire you to give curling a try (or return to) then please contact us. If you would like to attain the skill levels that will be seen by the Olympians there will be no need to worry that this is our level – we play for FUN. If you would like to try curling please contact Bobby on 814284 or Keith Kemp on 814152.
Gatehouse of Fleet Snooker Club
It has been a sunny summer and Snooker has had a quiet spell since April, with expert attention given to rebalancing the table and – thanks to Jack Donald – removal of the redundant sink unit. A new development, however, has enlivened our activities with what can best be described as a “Social Snooker” evening at 7.30 every other FRESH FRUIT & VEG : LOCAL BUTCHER MEAT : IRVINES BAKERY : LOCAL HONEY, JAM & EGGS : FILLED ROLLS TO ORDER : WHEAT & GLUTEN FREE FOODS : ORGANIC RANGE
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Wednesday evening enjoyed by some half dozen of our more senior members. The rules are gently bent to allow for a good deal of frivolity and conversation, but all without occasional flashes of – sometimes surprising – potting brilliance. Long may it continue! On a more serious note, the winter snooker season is now in full swing with the Handicap Competition event attracting 8 entries, matches to be completed before Christmas, followed in January with the annual Open Competition. New members will, as always, be very welcome. How about a Ladies’ Snooker Group?
Gatehouse Golf Club
The summer season has now finished but the Golf Club is offering a winter membership for £50 until 31st March 2014. If anyone is interested in this there are application forms in the clubhouse or alternatively contact Robert Hope, the Captain, on 0774 9080871, for any further information. It has been another difficult year for the Golf Club due to a variety of reasons but thanks
to the efforts of the Greenkeepers and all of the committee, the Club is already planning ahead for next year. The website has now been overhauled and if you visit gatehousegolfclub.com you will find more details about the Golf Club etc. Despite the hot summer many of the Club competitions have been cancelled with the Cally Cup being twice postponed. This was eventually played in September, nearly four months late, and was won by Malcolm Kirkwood from Kirkcudbright. After a gap of four years the Junior Cally Cup was also played, with Callum McMillan winning the 18 hole competition and Edward Hannay winning the 9 hole trophy. Congratulations go to Graham McMillan who successfully defended the Club Championship yet again. This is the fourth year running he has won this competition. The Club held its annual presentation evening in October at the Bank of Fleet and was well supported by members and guests. On January 13th 2014 the Club will hold its Annual General Meeting at 7pm in the Murray Arms Hotel. All are welcome to attend.
Gatehouse Community Council
Your Community Council meet on the 2nd Tuesday of every month at 7pm in the Community Centre. Members of the public are invited to attend any meeting. At the moment the Community Council is sadly depleted of members with only 8 councillors when the total should be 14 and in particular the chair, secretary, minute secretary and treasurer roles are all carried out by one person which means we do not adhere to the Scheme for Community Councils. If this situation continues it may be the case that Community Council cannot continue. We are the link between the community and Dumfries and Galloway Council and act on your behalf when local issues arise, to rectify, speed up or action situations that affect the town. Our role is to maximise the benefits for local people and their community. Also the Common Good Fund is administered by the Community Council and provides grant assistance to any local organisation for events or activities which would benefit the local community. So if you feel you could help us to help the community of Gatehouse either come along to one of our meetings or contact Pat Jacques - 814425.
We’re branching out! Cream o’ Galloway now runs the café at the new Kirroughtree Forest Visitor Centre. Explore this beautiful forest then head to the Visitor Centre and treat yourself to a delicious menu of tasty local foods, home baking and, of course, Cream o’ Galloway ice cream. Winter opening times: Fri, Sat & Sun, 10am-4pm.
t: 01671 402 165
... and now we make the scones to go with our jam
coffee shop gifts cards
Galloway Lodge Preserves
Business in Focus
Each issue we feature an in-depth interview with a local business to highlight individual contributions by the business sector to the local economy. This issue our choice is The Bank of Fleet Hotel. In mid-High Street the Bank of Fleet Hotel is a well-positioned feature of Gatehouse of Fleet’s hospitality scene, known and patronised by visitors and residents alike. The origins of the building as a 19th-century bank remind us of a very different local economy, but the evidence of its origins are still present in the former bank’s strong-room, accessed through the present residents’ lounge. For the last five years the present owner of the Hotel, Derrick Jobb, has been at pains to invest in and extend the interior of the building, and to use these improvements as a basis for enhancing the volume and quality of the services offered. With Manageress Kirsty Wilson, and a total of eight full-time (including Ian Hogg as Chef and Ann Coltart as Accountant) and five part-time staff, this is a busy operation and a significant employer. It is one of only two hotels with accompanying bar and restaurant in Gatehouse open seven days a week all the year round. The doubling of the size of the restaurant resulting from the rear extension to the building, together with improvements to the bar and adjacent seating areas has been popular and yielded a marked increase in turnover, particularly attractive for keenly priced good quality food and service and much in demand for functions, whether for evening events or concerts, or for weddings or other celebrations. Upstairs the Hotel offers five bedrooms (three doubles, one twin and one family room) all en-suite, at keenly competitive rates. The kitchen facilities which include adjacent deep-freeze capacity, have been adequate to cope with increased demand and to support an extensive menu, with produce bought in from local suppliers. Features which are popular with regulars and visitors alike are “Specials” on Wednesdays (Pie and pint), Thursdays (Pensioners’ lunch and steak night), Fridays (Fish) and Sunday ( 3- course lunch). The bar with its high ceiling is spacious and offers the usual facilities with a good range of beers on draught, Bellhaven, John Smiths, Budweiser, Ember, Guinness and Strongbow
Cider together with wide-screen TV including the popular SKY Sports channels. Plans for future improvements include modernisation and redecoration of the bedrooms and expansion of the attractive garden area across the adjacent mill lade to create a children’s play area.
Bank of Fleet Hotel
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D E S I G N
Open Daily 10am-5.30pm
7-9 Fleet Street, Gatehouse of Fleet DG7 2JT (over the bridge, next to The Ship)