Spotlight Magazine - Issue #2 - 2022

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Welcome to the second issue of Spotlight Magazine for 2022!


wonder if, like me, you feel like there are too many bad things happening in the world right now? The ongoing Covid-19 infections, the outbreak of war in Ukraine and the rapid increase in the cost of living and associated poverty all make bleak reading. Several members of the Spotlight team have been directly affected by the war and I know many members of this community will be in a similar position. Everyone on the Spotlight team sends our best wishes to anyone who is suffering hardship of any kind at this time.

their community. Spotlight works with an impressive list of community partners at Queensferry Parish Church, Queensferry Community Development Trust, the Queensferry & District Community Council, RNLI Queensferry, Rotary and others to bring you news of what is happening in the area. As always, if you run an organisation or charity that would benefit from being featured in Spotlight, just drop us a line at spotlight@wordsandpicturesUK. com and we’ll happily discuss your requirements. We’re still keen to hear from more groups in Kirkliston, Newton and Dalmeny to include our surrounding communities. I am also delighted to announce that Spotlight’s publisher, Words & Pictures, will again be producing the Ferry Fair Festival’s 2022 programme and I will share details of how to purchase a copy in the next issue.

I hope, therefore, the happy image on the front cover spreads a little and much needed joy in our community. If it puts a smile on your face, just for a moment, it will have done the intended job. The picture was taken because our local Scout Group, the 21st Craigalmond, has made history by investing the first ever Squirrel Scouts! A historic moment, Squirrel Scouts are the newest branch of the Scouting family in 35 years, specifically designed for 4-5 yearold boys and girls. Squirrel members will wear red uniforms and have their own sets of badges including Feel Good, Be Active, Explore Outdoors, Brilliant Builder and Exciting Experiments. The launch matters now, more than ever, due to the pandemic. These initiatives provide support to early years children, many of whom are anxious after lockdown and help them learn valuable skills for life.

As reported in the last issue, we have a new Spotlight publication schedule for 2022. Spotlight continues to evolve to adapt to an uncertain environment but also to meet the needs of the community and advertisers it serves. It may be useful to remind everyone that we are publishing the magazine in “pairs” of digital and printed versions. Our next issues will be #5 (digital) in May and #6 (printed) in June. Contributions for issue #5 and issue #6 are due by Friday 29th April at the latest. I look forward to hearing from you. Slava Ukraini!

My thanks to all our regular contributors who continue to use Spotlight as a communications channel for

Alistair Pryde Spotlight Editor

Special thanks: Special thanks to all our contributors, contact details are listed with features where appropriate.

Whilst every care is taken to ensure the accuracy of this publication, Spotlight Magazine is not responsible for 3rd party content submitted in good faith from contributors. Due to Covid-19 restrictions in place, readers should check with advertisers directly before making bookings or purchases. Spotlight Magazine is a Words & Pictures publication. Write to us at 48 High Street, South Queensferry, EH30 9HN.

Cover picture: Zoe and Ruaraidh, 21st Craigalmond Squirrel Scouts by Alistair Pryde. To find out more please visit: Editorial & pictorial enquiries:

Advertising sales & enquiries:

Keep your stories coming:

Back issues available online at:


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It’s all in the mind… N ot sure if you’ve come across ‘Wordle’ yet. An online word game that comes your way once a day. Just pop ‘wordle new york times’ into your search engine and it should hook you in.

vowels. Thing is you have to be careful not to read too much social media before you do it as some people give some clues away! I speak of course from experience and that friends is what this little insight has to do with the games our minds play with us.

The principle is simple enough – you just type in a five letter word across the top row and if the letter turns green it’s in the word you’re looking for. If it appears in a mustard colour then that letter is in the final word but in the wrong place and, you’ve guessed it, if it appears grey then it’s not in the final word.

A few weeks ago I foolishly read of someone who popped a bit of news out there that they had succeeded in getting the word in just 3 moves beginning with the word PEACE and to crown it all they also let slip that the final word was in such contrast to it.

Many people have their favourite starter word as it may contain a good number of

Why is it that when your mind absorbs an insight it won’t just go away? The

conversation then unfolds in my mind: “Just stick with your normal starter word David… hmm, but she got it in three moves – that’s pretty good…” So, inevitably, I decide to go for the word she recommended: PEACE. But! Only one letter turns mustard – nothing else! So much for the big tip – my next thought, “so the final word is in contrast to the first word…” and of course before you know it I’m playing around with words in contrast to and associated with peace. Eventually after four goes I get it – NASTY. The whole experience got me thinking about the way the mind works – an idea comes across it and before you know it it’s taken up residence within and despite your best efforts it just won’t go away. We are as you’ll all well know creatures of habits– good habits and not so good habits. Following the good ones is helpful; following the not so good ones is unhelpful. Question is, when the not so helpful ones begin to grow - how do we edit them? Within the Christian Church we’ve entered a season known as Lent and as is often the case it’s a season that begins by focussing in on a battle of the mind – this battle was going on in the mind of Jesus when he found himself for some 40 days in a desert place (check out Matthew 4 vs 1-11 in the New Testament). As you can imagine there were thoughts planted within him that would help him in his time there and other thoughts which would be unhelpful in the extreme.

Ideas such as: “if you’re so powerful – why not turn these stones into bread?” Tempting as this was Jesus recognised the source of such thoughts and quickly counteracted with words from the scriptures that he was brought up with: “you do not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from God.” After a couple of further temptations he responded in a similar vein revealing that he had found a way to overcome such thoughts, thoughts that were seeking to dominate his mind and undermine the goodness that he had come to do. We, like Jesus, will all have to face such battles of the mind – the focus of the battles we face within will doubtless be different for each of us – anger – gossip – stealing – violence - drugs - alcohol – sex… I could go on. The solution for Jesus was to draw strength from the words that God had given and these words along, with the support and perspective of trusted and understanding friends, can help us when we face our desert moments. Danger is if we give in to the unhelpful temptations that begin to develop in our minds we may find ourselves pursuing an agenda and direction that may not only be unhelpful to ourselves – all those under our sphere of influence might be impacted too. The greater our influence - the greater the consequences of our actions and we need not look too far east at this present time to see how such influence plays out. Oh how we pray for that which has become NASTY may turn to PEACE. Peace and blessings on you and yours, David

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local steering group has formed, self tasked with creating a community development trust for the area. A CDT could bring huge value to Queensferry and the surrounding area with access to funding and resources currently passing us by. There are no real practical limits to the projects a CDT could deliver, the imagination and will of the community is the only real limit. A Queensferry CDT would give the community far greater say and control over local investment and services. There are currently 329 CDT’s registered with Development Trusts Association Scotland (DTAS), including our neighbours in Winchburgh, Linlithgow and others unregistered.

The steering group is currently working on two fronts 1. To research and recommend the legal structure of the CDT, register it with authorities and DTAS. 2. To compile the various local studies and consultations conducted in the last decade to establish potential initial projects and further study requirements. Further information on CDT’s and what they can achieve can be found on the DTAS website and updates on the steering group’s progress can be found on the Queensferry Community Development Trust Facebook page https://www.facebook. com/QueensferryCDT If you think you may be able to help, please drop us an email at

To do this the group needs people willing and able to get involved on many levels, from directors with legal and financial skills and knowledge, to project managers, fundraisers, effective communicators and anyone with a passion for the area willing and able to get stuck in and help out in whatever way they can, whenever they can. Everyone has a value and is welcome.

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Respect The Water N ow that Spring has arrived, with lighter evenings and hopefully warmer temperatures, many will be thinking about heading out on or near the water. Whether it’s kayaking, paddle boarding, open water swimming, sailing or one of the many other activities you can do on the water, we want you to be safe and we want you to be prepared. From wearing and checking the correct equipment to what to do if you or someone else gets in to trouble, the RNLI have a massive amount of information available for everyone. You don’t need to be a user of the water yourself to benefit from the knowledge of water safety. Visit for more information, including advice tailored to particular water based activities.

It’s easier than you think to get into trouble in the water. Things to consider in order to keep you and others safe are tide times, weather forecast, rip currents and waves, off shore winds, other water users, slippery rocks or big drops from cliffs and cold water shock. Whatever you are doing we advise you to;

Around 140 people lose their lives at the UK and Irish coasts each year, and over half never even planned to enter the water. It’s important you know what to do in an emergency so you can help without putting yourself in danger. There are two simple skills you should know that could save a life: • If you find yourself in difficulty in the water, float to increase your chances of survival. • If you see someone else in trouble in the water, call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard.

Float To Live If you find yourself in the water unexpectedly, the RNLI urge you to remember this key piece of advice: 1. Fight your instinct to thrash around. 2. Lean back, extend your arms and legs. 3. If you need to, gently move them around to help you float.

• Know your limits and don’t take risks.

4. Float until you can control your breathing.

• Go with others and look out for each other.

5. Only then, call for help, swim to safety or continue floating until help arrives.

• Be aware of the dangers.

• Make sure your phone is charged so you can call for help if you or someone else needs it.

Heading to the beach? In Scotland, there are 8 RNLI lifeguarded beaches and all of them are on the East Coast. Closest to Queensferry are Aberdour Silver Sands Beach and Burntisland Beach. The lifeguard service is seasonal and typically runs between May and September. Lifeguards are not only there to rescue people who get into difficulty, they also provide safety advice and first aid to beach users. RNLI Lifeguards also run Swim Safe, a community-focused programme that gives children aged 7–14 an opportunity to learn how to be safe in and around open water. The practical sessions are designed to help young people who can already swim 25m unaided to improve their swimming ability and feel more confident in the water. For more information on Swim Safe visit safety/swim-safe

Water Safety Teams Our Water Safety Team are available to provide advice ashore or onboard. Occasionally you will find our volunteer teams at busy slipways, marinas and harbours, handing out leaflets and offering sea safety advice. If you see them, always feel free to ask any questions regarding your safety on the water, they will only be too happy to help. Water Safety Teams also hold lifejacket clinics at a variety of locations where you can bring your lifejacket along and find out how to check for faults, how to

correctly wear the jacket and what you should do both monthly and annually to inspect your lifejacket. Over one third of lifejackets the RNLI see are faulty in our opinion with over 5% having faults serious enough to prevent their operation. Remember, lifejackets are useless unless worn. There will be an event at Port Edgar Marina at some point but details are yet to be confirmed and we will make you aware of these on the RNLI Queensferry Lifeboat Facebook page. The RNLI also provide water safety education visits to community groups and schools. We’re here to help you with everything you need to teach the young people in your classroom or group how to stay safe in, on and around the water. For more information about water safety advice, training or visits you can contact our local Water Safety Officer by email at Remember, in a coastal emergency, immediately dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard. #RespectTheWater #FloatToLive

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Rotary Ukraine Appeal Finds Great Public Support Over the weekends of 12th - 13th and 19th - 20th March, the Rotary Club of South Queensferry collected for the Rotary Foundation Disaster Response Fund Ukraine Appeal. Collections at Tesco, Scotmid and Hopetoun Farm Shop received donations of £5006.79 from our community. This will be boosted by Gift Aid to £6,258.48 In Britain, Rotary is focusing its efforts on the Rotary Foundation Disaster Response Fund. To date, $2.6 million has been donated worldwide to The Rotary Foundation. This figure is rising daily. Money is provided through Disaster Relief Grants. Applications are processed in one or two days and money is received five or six days later. A fast response. Administration costs are minimal. This money is already being distributed to Rotary Districts in Ukraine and neighbouring countries dealing with the vast influx of refugees. Funds are used to meet local needs, whether that be food, shelter, medicines, accommodation, communication with loved ones or onward travel. Disaster Response Fund contributions received by the Rotary Foundation before 30th April 2022 will be prioritised for Ukrainian relief efforts. Applications will be accepted until 30th June, funds permitting. These dates will be reviewed as the situation develops. President Derek Clark said: “The Rotary Club of South Queensferry could not have raised this much money without the amazing support of the people in the Queensferry and Kirkliston area. It makes us proud to be part of this community. Thank you all”.

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Friends of South Queensferry Cemetery and the Vennel Kirk's Burial Ground


riends of South Queensferry Cemetery and the Vennel Kirk’s Church Burial Ground

The group started in August 2021 with a small committee of 6 people which supports the Edinburgh Cemeteries Team in looking after our local cemeteries. This group is one of many in the Edinburgh area to ensure that the local cemeteries are kept well and tidied. The Committee set out with a wish list for South Queensferry Cemetery, and this has been welcomed by the Edinburgh Cemeteries Team which has been able to support us with tools, bulbs and trees. The volunteers have used these around the cemetery to make it more welcoming for visitors and families. We have been able to receive support, through two grants for the group via the Cemeteries Team. One was used to ensure we had public insurance for the volunteers working in the area and the committee are looking to see what other items would be useful. If you have visited the cemetery recently you will see that there are two new raised planters at the entrance to the cemetery at the gates. A new bench has also been installed by the Cemeteries Team with support from the group.

The volunteers have met a number of times to plant bulbs, trees, leaves pick up and a general tidy up and meet around once a month. Bird and bat boxes have also been installed to support the local wildlife in the area. Please look out for them! In collaboration with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in Scotland, the group has had a successful Doors Open Day where visitors came to hear about the War Graves and the Cemetery. We hope to do more of these. The Cemeteries Management Team has supported the Green Flag Initiative at 2 cemeteries in Edinburgh, of which South Queensferry is one. The group did not know that their efforts would be able to achieve to this and we will work to maintain this standard. If you have some spare time and would like to join the Volunteer Group, we would love to hear from you, then please contact: Neill Walker, Secretary, fsqcvk@hotmail. com or Jane Harkin, Chairperson, 07554 007765.

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Queensferry & District Community Council the gym equipment and removed the need to pre-book the gym at the QHS Leisure facilities in line with CEC COVID guidance. Membership and bookings through venues/queensferry-high-sports-complex. Open All Hours youth facility on Friday evenings has proven highly popular, presently accommodating 45 places for young people. Book online via


DCC has continued operating remotely throughout the pandemic, using various online tools. Monthly meetings are held on the evening of the fourth Monday of every month except December, open to the public and are currently conducted using MS Teams video conferencing. Anyone wishing to join the meeting or to raise any points should email us through our website: http://www.

A review of public swimming access times is under way with a view to increase.


Subject to change, there are presently 22 cruise liners scheduled for Queensferry this year, starting with the Emerald Princess on May 18th. Funding for delivery of the long-awaited signage strategy is in process for both north and south. The revised Forth Bridge Experience planning application has been submitted. General parking in the town remains a concern with poor public transport options from the west, northwest and south.


Major housing development construction continues at South Scotstoun and Ferrymuir, an archaeological survey nearing completion in preparation of the Springfield site and planning in principle has been passed for the Builyeon Rd (mixed use), subject to conditions; Scotstoun House (Arup site) has been submitted for housing. Details of those and other developments are available in our monthly newsletters on our website.

Scotland’s Census 2022 has been sent out to households; this will provide invaluable local data as current census data is from 2011.


Following completion of the High St prep work at the Hawes area with a new fit for all turning circle; work at the west end for pedestrian crossings and a pavement at the Plewlands House corner is nearing completion. Additional funding for the full High St refurbishment is still to be found. Discussions are under way to gain back some parking in the promenade area currently restricted with double yellow lines where we believe it is no longer necessary.

The Rotary Club of South Queensferry are presently making plans for a local groups event on May 1st in Hawthorn Bank Garden. This will give the community the opportunity to find out more about the many and varied voluntary groups operating locally. Please check out our monthly newsletters on our website for much more local information.

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