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The Voice of Balquhidder, Lochearnhead, Strathyre & St Fillans • APRIL 2017

Vicky Jack - Everest Girl! On a Sunday afternoon in March over 80 people were transported to the snows on the top of the world as Balquhidder’s Vicky Jack chatted casually about her adventures on “the Hill”! Her stunning photos revealed the tiny wavering ladders she had to entrust herself to as she navigated the crevasses and the sheer drops of hundreds of feet of ice below the rungs. She told the story of being so close to the top on her first attempt until she and her guide

both realised they had run out of their essential oxygen supply at which point her guide abandoned her leaving her to try and make her own way down to safety despite being totally disorientated with no oxygen. She admitted she was very lucky to survive this ordeal but, unlike most people’s responses would be, she promptly decided to try again the next year. This time she did achieve her goal of standing on top of the world even if she had to push past a few people who were

A packed hall in Balquhidder as Vicky describes her Everest experiences

monopolising the very narrow summit. The audience was obviously entranced by the tale and the determination, bravery and commitment required to achieve the top of Everest. A collection was taken and £340.00 was raised to be split between hall funds and Killin Mountain Rescue Team. The hall committee thanks Vicky for giving such an inspiring presentation and all those who attended to make the event such a success.

Vicky’s story - the new edition


The Ed’s Bit (from The Villagers AGM . . . ) Thanks to Brad at the Achray Hotel for hosting our Villagers AGM on the 17th March a warm welcome and lovely refreshments! The following comes from the Editor’s Report: A very warm welcome to our 24th Villagers AGM, quite a significant milestone to be in our ‘silver’ year. We are a little later in the year than normal and that is entirely my fault for having a baby forty years ago, and having to go to the other side of the world so Dad could pay for her birthday weekend. Many thanks to Gill for agreeing to be acting editor in chief in March as well as production supremo - and Donald, Andrew and Andrea for picking up the distribution, particularly when there were hiccups at the printers. We might be a small team but hopefully a very supportive one! I hope Isobel, our newest addition, knows how much her reports and tales about life in St Fillans have been appreciated by a) the editor for always being on time (even on occasions apologising for being too long which is never a problem), and b) the readers. Obviously the main decision we have recently taken is to bite the bullet and go for full colour editions. We want The Villagers to continue for as long as possible; we are still getting very positive feedback from people about how it is appreciated each month, both locally and further afield. We did feel that a revamp was long overdue and we’ve debated how best to achieve this. We do want to continue our monthly schedule as we feel this is what makes The Villagers relevant to people. It does pose serious challenges - mainly in the increased cost for colour printing and also in the added print production time. We currently use Stirling University printers and we hope to be able to continue with this local arrangement subject to resolving the issues of timing etc. The new look can only succeed if we can sell all the copies we print. We have worked hard over the last few years to establish this viable number, so it’s crucial that people pay their £1 into our honesty boxes. As well as our local sales, we do have a wonderful band of subscribers, stretching from remote Balquhidder to New Zealand. The task of sending these out every month has been very faithfully managed by Hilda Astbury in Strathyre for more years than she cares to count but she has now handed on the baton (and several cardboard boxes full of treasures) to Andrea Poulter to continue the good work. Our thanks go to both these ladies - and an afternoon tea is being planned for when the weather improves to say thanks to Hilda (and for Andrea to seek any further advice she needs). We are very lucky in living in an area where so many reportable events happen every year and we have often thought black and white does not do justice to the photos of some of these occasions. Our first colour edition certainly got us off to a flying start by being very vibrant, (too bright, in fact, for at last one loyal reader!) but we do appreciate all comments, and we hope that the inclusion of good quality photos of this year’s events will add to the enjoyment of reading all the different accounts. As always, a plea for more contributors was inevitably going to feature at this AGM, as without news our rationale disappears overnight - and we certainly are not going down the ‘fake news’ path! So, thanks to all our current contributors - and for the rest of you out there, please do get in touch with any ideas for new features. Finally, a huge thank you to all our wonderful advertisers. Without your support we really would not exist at all. We hope that you, too, appreciate being in glorious technicolour. Any new advertisers will receive a big welcome from Andrew as he continues to try to balance the books. At this point I would also like to thank Rory Gilchrist for always agreeing so readily to my request: “could you possibly do our accounts again?” and hopefully we will still be in business to ask him again next year. JJ

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Strathyre News

2017

Calling all local musical talent! The

Strathyre Music Festival is hosting a new stage at the market Square this year and would like to showcase some local talent. Interested? Contact Janet or Emma at the village shop.

STRATHYRE MUSIC FESTIVAL

26/27/28 May 2017


At the suggestion of some helpful villagers, when asked about new ideas for content, I’m now featuring an Agony Column. Here is my first one: “I own a village shop (not the local one) and I dislike everyone. Should I be thinking of a new career?”

The

St Fillans Bit

Spring has arrived, and along with it, a fresh dollop of snow, right on cue, on 21st March. As my wise mum might say, “ne’er cast a clout til May is out” (that’s Yorkshire speak for “don’t put your coat away till the end of May”). Another weather proverb ends with the line “when the wind is in the west, it is of all the winds the best” – let’s hope that the winds blow favourably on 23rd April for all the competitors in the annual Great Loch Earn Boat Race (which just also happens to be St George’s Day). The boat launch, for this charity event, begins at Lochearnhead at 11:30 am. It will finish some several hours, and just over six miles later, at the jetty of The Achray House Hotel (who are co-sponsors of the race), where Brad and his team look forward to hosting participants and supporters and providing them with sustenance and refreshments. I recommend going along to the finishing line (between 2 and 4pm, approximately) to cheer along the teams – I think they deserve all the support they can get. If it is not too short notice, and you would like to enter a team, please contact Jamie Russell from Crieff Round Table who is responsible for putting the event together jamieboydrussell@gmail. com, mobile number 07964807721. Whilst you’re standing on the loch shore, or walking in the hills, keep your eyes peeled for our feathered visitors which include a pair of nesting golden eagles, which our local wildlife expert, Andrea Hudspeth, informs me are sitting on eggs - very appropriate for Easter. We are keeping our fingers crossed that the pair produce another pair of twins this year. There have also been several sightings of nuthatches in the area (we have a pair in our garden) and Andrea might be the proud parent of baby blackbirds soon, as a pair are nesting in her garage. Watch this space! Wildlife plays such an important role in our area, and we are fortunate to have a diverse range of flora and fauna right on our doorstep. In an effort to raise awareness of local wildlife and increase the opportunities of applications for related grants and funding, a new wildlife support group has joined forces with the existing village Gardening

by Isobel Howell Group. It is anticipated that with more local support and volunteers behind it, the group will be able to monitor and survey wildlife, including bats and other protected species, educate and inform the public, and apply for funding to help wildlife causes and projects. If anybody is interested in getting involved, please contact me and I will pass your details onto the group. Likewise, it would be interesting to know what wildlife visits our gardens – I would love to know, and if you have photos which you’d be happy to share, please get in touch. On which subject - I also need photographs and suggestions for a caption competition. The photo on page 4 was taken at the St Fillans Festive Weekend. The person who comes up with the best caption wins a free coffee and bacon roll at The Village Store. Suggestions, please … In future, I would like to feature a section called Who is this Villager? The idea is to print a photograph of a local (as a baby/child/teenager) who you wouldn’t normally recognise, and follow up the next month with a small piece about the (Continued overleaf) person.

Dear Shop Owner I hope you are generalising when you say that you dislike everyone. Surely there must be some customers/ suppliers who you like – for example, the Warburtons’ delivery man. I think a career change would be quite drastic at your time of life (you sound as though you’re quite old) and you might find it difficult to gain new employment, especially if you’re prone to grumpiness. Some customers, in a sadistic way, actually enjoy a grumpy shopkeeper – take, for example, Arkwright, the character from Open All Hours – he had many customers. Perhaps your disliking of people is a manifestation of another area in your life where things are not going right for you - for example, are you worried that your yum yums are no longer yummy (I’m just hypothesising and not suggesting for one minute that you sell yum yums, although if you do happen to sell them, stick a smile on your face and I’ll be round later). My advice to you, apart from upping sticks and moving to a desert island, is to carry on with shop life – I believe a leopard can’t change its spots and you start promoting yourself as Scotland’s grumpiest shopkeeper – it could be the making of you.

Light Lunch and ‘Specials’ Menu in the Bistro • Afternoon and Cream Tea • Evening A La Carte and Rosette Menu • Sunday Roasts from £15.95 • Lunches, Afternoon Tea, Suppers and Dinner served daily

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Continued from previous page

Again, I’m relying on the contribution of readers and locals, so I would really appreciate your help in making this work. Please send me your photos and a piece about yourself, including when the photo was taken and where you live. If anybody would like to write their own piece to be featured here, I would dearly love to hear from you – after all, it is the people who make this ‘bit’ interesting. Perhaps you have an unusual hobby, or maybe you have/had an interesting or unusual career or lived in an interesting place that you think people might like to hear about. Please get in touch. Now for the local hotels’ bit. The Four Seasons is fully open, and they have new staff. “Still” (aka The Mirror Man, who sits in the water just in front of the hotel) is back from his holidays – apparently, lots of people come to take photographs of him, and when he’s not there they can get quite annoyed. Bookings are recommended if you’d like a table for Easter Sunday Lunch (I’ve checked, and it’s the 16th). As mentioned previously, the Achray House Hotel is busy on 23rd April hosting the boat race. One of their new ideas could be a present for a boat race participant – they’re offering “Husband Day Care Facilities” at weekends, and, I’m excited to hear, a Pampering Day soon for the ladies. In case you haven’t already heard, there is a charity May Ball being planned for Saturday 20th May at the Four Seasons Hotel. The evening, which is a black-tie event (a good excuse, ladies, for a new frock) is limited to 70 guests, and will include a three-course meal, a live band, auction and raffle prizes for everyone. Tickets are £45 each and are available from Harry Burnet, Carol Graham, Mike McGregor or myself, with donations going toward the Scottish Charity Air Ambulance – a very worthwhile cause, so get your posh togs out and treat yourselves. Don’t forget to send me your photos of local wildlife sightings, photos for future caption competitions and photos of yourself to play guess the villager. Wishing you all a very happy Easter (mine’s a Lindor Easter egg, in case you’re asking) and good luck to all the teams rowing the loch.

Isobel

ps Here’s the photo (right) for the Caption Competition... Send your suggestions to: Jill Johnston, Editor Gardeners Cottage Balquhidder FK19 8PB 4


DOCTORS

Drs Strang & Scott and Drs Mathewson & Gibson Community Nurses The surgeries and community nurses take part in various training programmes throughout the year. This is to meet the educational and training needs of all members of the practice and nursing team. The next training afternoons will provisionally be on: Thursday 25th May 2017 and Tuesday 20th June 2017 On these afternoons, please do not contact the surgeries for repeat prescriptions or for appointments. Both practices and community nurse clinic will close at 12.30pm. We hope that emergency cover will be provided by NHS24 for nursing and GPs, however, this will not be confirmed to the practices until nearer the time. In the event of an emergency, please telephone 111.

Bracklinn Practice Bracklinn Practice recently completed a patient questionnaire on behalf of the clinicians. The results were very positive with lots of lovely comments for the individual clinicians. We would like to thank everyone for their co-operation. However, there were a few comments about the “Doctors running late”. This has been commented on previously, and we ask you to think of the following when making an appointment: • Each appointment is 10 minutes long which is the Government guideline. • A 10-minute appointment can create extra time for the clinician to complete the consultation e.g. referrals/blood tests/follow-ups etc. • There are “catch up” slots within the clinics in case a patient takes longer than 10 minutes. • Every clinic includes semi-urgent and urgent slots at the end. • Our clinics run for approximately 2.5 hours. • Sometimes the patient will take longer than their allocated 10 minutes. • The clinics always start on time unless the doctor has been called away to an emergency. • Think about how many problems you want to discuss. • Inform the receptionists you may need longer than 10 minutes. • Appointments always take longer than “a couple of minutes”. The receptionists may ask what your symptoms are to prioritise the urgent appointments. Please also note: Urgent appointments are for people who have become acutely unwell. Not turning up for an appointment creates a backlog for people needing to be seen. The clinicians will always try to accommodate anyone running late for an appointment if they inform the receptionist as soon as possible. You may however, be asked to wait until the end of the clinic to be seen.

Bracklinn Practice Bank holiday opening hours

open as usual The practice will be ng. We will orni on Good Friday m d re-open on an e im ht nc lu at close th April. 18 y Tuesda ay the practice M t 1s y On Monda in the morning will open as usual ternoon e and close in th af g. in in tra aff for st ical attention If you require med is closed, please when the practice on 111. contact NHS24

UNUSED MEDICINES Wasted medicines cost the NHS £1.2m each year

Amnesty Friday

Every Friday from March - May Please bring your unwanted medication to Callander Medical Centre or Pharmacy • Specify what medication you need when ordering • Tell us if you are not taking a medication on your repeat list • Each one of us has a responsibility to reduce wastage, improve safety and save money!

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Lochearnhead Latest

13th MAY 2017

The Lochearnhead Village Hall

AGM

will take place on Tuesday 18th April 2017 in the village hall at 7.30pm All are welcome to attend – please come along and get involved!

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SEEING STARS by Keith Wilson 

t Polaris

APRIL

Did you find Jupiter last month? It’s still there if you missed it. One of the most well-known of our constellations is The Plough. However, you might be surprised to learn that it isn’t a constellation at all! The Plough is actually a pattern of stars in the constellation Ursa Major (The Great Bear). The seven stars of The Plough are known by many different names including ‘The Big Dipper’, ‘The Saucepan’ and ‘The Wagon’ - you can see from its shape why it got those names. The two stars on the right side of The Plough are known as ‘The Pointers’ because they provide a good signpost to the north. If you draw an imaginary line straight up from the pointer stars (roughly five times the distance) you will arrive at the star Polaris (The North Star) in the constellation Ursa Minor (The Little Bear). Many people expect Polaris to be the brightest star in the sky but that’s not the case. It’s faint - but important! Polaris has been used for navigation since the earliest of times. Because of its position in the sky relative to Earth, it remains stationary as all the other stars swirl around the sky each night, so travellers know exactly which way is north when they see it. When looking at The Plough, take a close look at the star second from left on the handle. It might look like a single star but it is actually two stars. The brighter one is called Mizar and the fainter one just above it is called Alcor - ancient Arabs called them the ‘Horse and Rider’. If you have good eyesight and a very dark sky you should be able to see them both, otherwise they are easy to see with binoculars. So, your challenge this month: Find The Plough, the North Star Polaris and if you have binoculars take a look at Mizar and Alcor. Good luck!

CAOS ROCKS THE BOAT! GUYS AND DOLLS 15-18 March, Callander High School Callander Amateur Operatic Society has done it again with their 2017 production, Guys and Dolls - a vibrant and heartfelt performance. This popular musical had to be a winning choice for CAOS: every song is a cracker with lyrics to die for and catchy melodies. CAOS caught the spirit of the show beautifully, delivering the music with gusto and good, crisp diction - a fair challenge when New York accents were the order of the day. With characterful backing provided by Musical Director Marc Fallon and his musicians, it was a real treat to hear all these wonderful songs done well. Congratulations must go to the four solid leads: Brian McKay (a natural Nathan Detroit), Ronnie Honey (masterful Sky Masterson), Lauren Nimmo (sweet Sarah Brown) - and Angela Dickinson, at times almost heartbreaking as Adelaide. Dan McKirgan as Nicely-Nicely Johnson really packed a punch with ‘Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ The Boat (for me, the high spot of the show) and a touching rendition of “More I Cannot Wish You’ by (Director)

Iain Fraser’s ‘Arvide Abernethy’ came close to bringing a tear to the eye. Guys and Dolls does call for a good strong male contingent, and all the zootsuited, dice-throwing guys on view here were first rate. CAOS’ dedication and infectious enjoyment makes for an evening of great fun not to be missed. I’m really looking forward to finding out what they’ll be giving us in 2018. GW

‘Adelaide’ and ‘Nathan’ take a break backstage

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Church News Balquhidder • BLS Reg. Charity No. SC012316

A Note from

St Angus’s

The Bible has many puzzling sayings and one that I have been pondering over recently is what Jesus said about the Law. The Law to which he was referring is the Law contained in the first five books of the Old Testament - the law which states that adulterers must be put to death, that certain foods must be avoided, that the company of certain undesirable people must be avoided, that certain rules governing the Sabbath must be adhered to, that certain laws of cleanliness/ hand washing must be observed etc. Now Jesus’ words were “I come not to abolish the Law but to fulfil it” and “until heaven and earth pass away not the smallest letter or stroke of the Law shall pass away....” But then, as we read the New Testament we see just the opposite - Jesus constantly breaks the Law regarding all of the above. When he finds a woman caught in adultery he shames those who want to stone her and then simply says “Go and sin no more.” When taken to task for breaking the rules of the Sabbath he says “the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” And as for the company he kept - well, I’m not sure any Godfearing Christian would have approved at all! So, what am I to understand by the Law which Jesus came to fulfil? I can only think he was referring to the law of love - to love God with all my heart and soul and to love my neighbour as myself. If this is the case then presumably that is the Law with which the world wide Christian Church must wrestle when it deals with such difficult problems as divorce, abortion, the ordination of woman, same-sex marriage and all the other moral issues which surface in each generation. No wonder they take so long to decide these issues and not surprising that it causes so much disagreement. It’s not always easy to see what is the most “loving” solution to a problem. Before I finish I would remind everyone who reads this far that I am just a lone voice among the congregation of St Angus’s and the congregation must not be held responsible of my views. Please feel free to comment or disagree at any time. I’m sure the Editor would be pleased to hear from you. Grateful thanks to all who supported our Pancake Day! We made £500. This is not meant to be an exclusive event so if in future you would like to come please let anyone in the St Angus’s congregation know. Because it takes place in a house we do need to keep control of numbers. Which brings me to this year’s house - Very many thanks to Sandy and Ginny at Ardvorlich who worked incredibly hard to ensure the success of the day and many thanks too to those who worked on the Bring and Buy, tossed pancakes, sold raffle tickets and kept children amused. A real team effort. 8

MUSINGS FROM THE MANSE

Hi Folks

Easter will soon be upon us, later than normal this year. Compared to Christmas it sometimes seems to me to be a bit of a damp squib. Certainly the Churches mark it but society in general hardly notices it. Strange, really! Now I know that Christmas comes with family reunions, winter festivals and that magical feel-good factor that makes that time of year so special. It also has mulled wine (what more is there to say!). It has been claimed that the trouble with Christmas is the bills come in January and the Baby grows up. Some truth in that I think! In contrast, at Easter we remember the dramatic story of Jesus going to Jerusalem and all that ensued from that. I love the quote by a movie critic about the film Lord of the Rings: “It’s an epic with grimy hands and a core of mystery.” That’s how I feel about the Easter story! As I drive around this area, two terms describe my impressions of the scenery – majesty and mystery. On a clear day with the mountains snowcapped, the first term is very apt. However, those same mountains covered in swirling clouds and the glens hidden in the eerie mists that often hover over the landscape convey very powerfully the sense of mystery. In the Easter story I see both majesty and mystery and believe it is a story worth exploring and engaging with. The late T F Torrance, probably one of the finest theologians Scotland ever produced (he was a past recipient of the Templeton prize for outstanding contributions to science and religion) served as a padre in the Second World War. One day in Italy, he came across a young soldier who was mortally wounded. He asked Torrance “Is God really like Jesus?” The padre assured him he was and the young soldier died after a short prayer was given for him. That question was to have a dramatic impact on the rest of Torrance’s life and work and in part, drove his creative and scholarly engagement with the Christian Faith. It certainly is a multimillion-dollar question. Some folks have no belief in God or interest in religion and I understand that. However, I have to be honest and say that many people I meet have a latent curiosity and serious questions about these issues. Therefore, the Christian Story is not just a long-standing part of the culture of our area; it is a good place to start an exploration of spiritual matters. Whoever you are and wherever you are have a blessed Easter this year. RM

EASTER ARRANGEMENTS FOR ST ANGUS’S SCOTTISH EPISCOPAL CHURCH At this wonderful time of regrowth and new life we welcome you to join us in our celebrations of the new life that is promised to all of us in Jesus Christ. 10 April: MONDAY IN HOLY WEEK Voices in a Mystery - a unique performance with art and music of a cycle of Easter poems in the voices of people on the edges of the events of Easter. Held in St Serf’s in Comrie at 7pm. 14 April: GOOD FRIDAY 2.15pm  Reflection and worship as we remember Jesus’ death on the cross 16 April: EASTER SUNDAY  8am   Easter Communion at the Lochside (Loch Earn below Lochearnhead Hotel,) followed by bacon butties at the hotel. 11.30am Easter Communion in St Angus’s Church


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Pin-Feathers*

Voices in a Mystery

*Once in demand by Victorian miniaturists, the tiny pin-feather comes from the leading edge of a woodcock’s wing and only two such feathers occur on each bird (one on each wing). This month, Old Nyati has supplied some very interesting images - can you figure out what they are? Answers on page 21.

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By Paul Mein

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Ordinary lives touched by the events of The Crucifixion A Performance of an Easter Cycle of Poems Supplemented by illustrations and music Strathearn Episcopal Churches warmly invite you to attend. The poems will be read by different voices.

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Monday 10th April 2017 at 7 pm At St Serf’s Episcopal Church, Comrie

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Admission Free Retiring collection in aid of Calcutta Rescue. www.calcuttarescuefund.org.uk A visitor to a Performance of these poems at St John’s Church, Perth before Easter last year described it as “...a dramatic sequence of poems... I decided to go along and I’m very pleased I did... reflections on the events of Easter week from the viewpoint of ordinary people: the maid who prepared the room for the last supper, the carpenter who made the cross, the doctor who signed the death certificate. The thoughts of those closest to the events and to Jesus were often moving and thought provoking.”

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Memories of Mary Cameron... Evacuee Operation Pied Piper I was born in the Garngad in Glasgow on 2nd February 1934 to Allan and Robina ‘Beannie’ Cameron. I was five years old in 1939 when the war started. On 31st August 1939, fearing that the Germans would bomb Glasgow, the order came to ‘Evacuate Forthwith’ and so, over the next 3 days, 120,000 children evacuated Glasgow. On 2 September 1939 I was evacuated with my mum ‘Beannie’, my three sisters Nan aged 11, Ruby aged 9 and Jessie aged three and my brother Dougie aged 7. We were really lucky that my mum was able to come with us, many children had to travel alone or with siblings and must have been terrified, but for us it was a huge adventure. My Ma was able to come because my younger sister Jessie was under school age and only pregnant women and mothers with preschool children were allowed go with their children. My Ma and Da would never have split up the family, or allowed us to go alone. We left Glasgow on the train and arrived at St Fillans train station. I remember everyone at the train station having gas masks and marching down the road to the village school. We all gathered in the school hall. It was very well organised and the villagers already had names of the children, or families they were going to take in. We were so lucky that we were allocated to Mr Mudie and he allowed our family to have his cottage next to the village shop that he owned. He then lived above the shop with his wife and daughter. Braehead Cottage We were allocated to live in Braehead cottage, right next to the village shop. We lived in a really large ‘single end’ in ‘the Maddie’ in The Garngad in Glasgow, with 10

gas lights, a tin bath in front of the fire and outside toilet. ‘The Maddie’ was an old mental asylum that had been turned into flats – hence its local name. So for us having a cottage with a living room, kitchen, two bedrooms, electricity, indoor toilet and believe it or not, a bath was a real luxury. My Ma had a key and always kept the front room of the cottage locked as it had the Mudie’s piano and lovely furniture in there. We were not allowed in and we all wondered what delights were in there and and imagined that it was a huge room filled with wonders. We all loved the lovely large garden at the back of the cottage that we shared with the Mudies. Mr Mudie’s wee girl had a hut in the garden full of toys. Given that we had few toys or dolls and shared one roller skate between the five of us (yes one skate - not a pair!), we were overwhelmed by this. Mr Mudie and all the other people in the village where very kind to us. When we arrived at the cottage there was a big bag of food awaiting us on the table. That was the first time that I had had a whole chocolate biscuit to myself (in Glasgow we always bought broken biscuits), it was like a KitKat and to this day I still have a real real soft spot for KitKats. Trains, Boats and Automobiles We were used to trams and buses in Glasgow, but Mr Mudie had a car, which was rare in those days. I had never been in a car in my life before, so I couldn’t believe it when he ran us into Comrie. We all thought it was great. My friend Margaret McNair was also evacuated to St Fillans. She was housed in a big house opposite the loch (Craigdarroch I think). She said that the people who took

Mary Boath (Nee Cameron) at Braehead Cottage, 2016

her in were very good to her. They had a boathouse in the garden and we used to play games sitting rocking in the boats. To this day I have the scar on my finger where it got jammed between two of the boats. I didn’t tell my Ma though as I knew she wouldn’t let me play there again. Sheep, Swans and Hedgehogs My eldest sister Nan who was aged 11 helped look after some young children that lived in the house across the river, close to the golf course. We loved going there too as they had a pet sheep called Molly and we used to ride on Molly’s back. We used to collect acorns from the oak tree beside the bridge for Molly and take off the hard shell for her. She loved them and we loved her. One day one of our new neighbours gave my friend Margaret McNair and I a bag of brown sugar to feed some swans that had landed on the loch. We couldn’t believe it as during the war we didn’t get many sweet things, so most of the sugar went to us! We were lucky that we had a huge park in front of our house in Glasgow (the grounds of the old asylum), but we loved the large garden that we shared with the Mudie’s. There was a hedgehog that lived in the garden that we loved. It was the first time we had seen one and it was great to watch it rolling into a wee ball. A run in with the local Bobby Having never seen an orchard before, some of the Glasgow boys couldn’t believe their luck when they stumbled across a whole load of apple and pear trees. So, with no idea that they were stealing, they gathered as many as they could carry and brought back to my Ma delighted with their foraging finds. The villagers were all really kind and


often gave the evacuees gifts, such as eggs. So she quickly got busy turning them into crumble. Scrumping apples and pears was a pretty serious crime in St Fillans in those days (and I am delighted to say probably still is!) and the local constable was sent round the village to locate the culprits. He arrived at the cottage while the fruit was stewing in the kitchen and my Ma realizing their mistake, had to apologize profusely and appease him with promises of apple and pear crumble for the village and a skelp round the ear for the culprits. Fond Memories I remember the blackout blinds and the warden coming round to check if any light was showing and if it was he would shout ‘put that light off!’. Although I don’t remember my teacher’s name, I still remember her and I remember walking to and from school and I could still remember the route we took today. It was lovely to visit the school again, which is now being transformed into a beautiful house. As we settled into St Fillans Life, my Ma got a job working in the Drummond Arms Hotel, working in the kitchen. My Da, Allan Cameron was a carter, who worked for the cleansing department in Glasgow. He had a Clydesdale horse called Sunshine that we loved. He had lost half of his ‘trigger finger’ in an accident years ago, so couldn’t go to war, although many of his seven brothers did. My Da came to visit as every weekend in St Fillans, travelling from Glasgow to Comrie. Then on to St Fillans. If he missed the last transport he would have to walk the 6 miles from Comrie to St Fillans. He was a great walker so didn’t mind to much, but once the cold, dark, winter nights set in my Ma decided that it wasn’t fair on my Da to have to go home to an empty house every night and to walk all that distance after a long day’s work, plus he missed us all

terribly, so she started making plans for us to go home. The first of us to leave St Fillans was my brother Dougie. Once the excitement of evacuee country life had died down and winter set in, my brother Dougie decided that he wanted to go back to stay with my granny in Glasgow. Many of his pals had gone back home by this time as the feared German Blitzkrieg hadn’t happened and he missed the buzz of Glasgow life and his friends. Shortly after this my mum decided to take us all back home to Glasgow and to bring the family back together again. We were all very sad to leave St Fillans but in 1940, we returned to ‘Closes n Cors’. The evacuee returns St Fillans had a huge impact on all of our lives and we all had really fond memories of living there. I had visited on occasion, however it was a wonderful surprise to spend a week living in Braehead cottage once again, 77 years after we first moved in there. Although the inside of the cottage had changed beyond recognition it was amazing to discover that the ‘huge front room’ was in reality very small and also to lie in the bath on 2nd Sept 2016, thinking that I had spent my first ever night there, in my first ever bedroom, 77 years ago to the day. In 2016, the villagers were as helpful as ever and it will be wonderful to return next year for the celebrations of 200 years of St Fillans Life.

11


McLaren High School Robotics Challenge On 20 February, our McLaren High Robotics team consisting of Oliver Holden, Jake Duncan, Tully Montgomery-Windsor, Jack Mitchell, Fergus Mitchell and Jamie Warburton attended the Tomorrow’s Engineers Robotics challenge at West Lothian College. The group had beaten off others in school for the right to represent the school at the regional qualifier and therefore attended the competition full of confidence. On the day they had to deliver a presentation on power supplies in space, perform in a team challenge and also complete the robotics challenge they had been practising for. The confidence and belief that they had in themselves was well founded with each part of the day going even better than they could have hoped for. This culminated in our team winning the heat and progressing to the national finals in Birmingham where they will very proudly represent McLaren High School and hopefully return with a trophy to show for their fantastic efforts!

Winners of the Robotics Challenge

Mock Interviews A great day was had on Monday 27 February with Mock Interviews taking place for all our senior pupils in S5 and S6. Thanks to all the interviewers who gave up their time to help out in this very worthwhile exercise. There was lots of positive feedback from both pupils and interviewers. Well done to all! Experience 14th-18th February 2017 This February, I (along with 24 other sixth year languages students from across Scotland) travelled to Strasbourg, France, to improve my language skills and meet people from all over Europe in the EU Parliament. As is so often the case, the aspects of the trip I had been the most nervous about became my highlights. On Wednesday, in groups of two we had to survey locals on the streets of Strasbourg – in French, of course – about Scotland and the EU. Beforehand, all of us were terrified that we wouldn’t be understood, or people would just say no, but the people of Strasbourg were incredibly welcoming and nearly everyone we asked answered our questions with a smile. The other side to the trip was politics based, with our Friday being spent alongside young people from 21 European nations in the EU Parliament in Strasbourg. The MEPs were not in session, but we’d been lucky enough to visit earlier in the week to speak to Labour MEP Catherine Stihler, so had got a feel for what a busy place the Parliament is. The whole trip has given me so much confidence in both my language skills and ability to push myself out of my comfort zone. I’ve made friends with people from not only Scotland but Greece, Ireland, Germany and France, and I cannot thank Callander Rotary enough for allowing me to have such a once in a lifetime opportunity. Finn Manders S6 Official Opening of the S T Connell Library Following months of hard work from studied at the University of Glasgow from both staff and pupils we were delighted where he graduated MA, B.Ed. He taught to welcome Douglas Connell to open the in Glasgow schools before and after war new S T Connell Library on Friday 3 March service and then settled in Callander 2017. which was his home for the next 38 years. The library is named after Douglas’s In 1949, he married Hazel, also a graduate father, Samuel Thomson Connell, who was of the University of Glasgow but in the appointed as Principal Teacher of English sciences rather than the arts, and who and History at McLaren High School in herself subsequently became a teacher 1948 and retired in 1976 after 28 years as of chemistry, biology and physics at Head of the English department. When McLaren High School. They had two sons asked what he taught, his invariable who were educated at McLaren High, answer was “pupils”. In his retirement sometimes being taught by both of their speech, he said that his greatest reward parents. One of his great interests in was to develop the intrinsic talents of his McLaren High was the development of students and to see the fruition of these the School Library which did not exist talents – all the time, as he put it, with the when he came to the school in 1948, and essential ingredient of humour. He was Mr Connell’s son, Douglas, believes it born in Ayrshire on 17 January 1913 and would have given him much pleasure to 12

Mock interviews

At the EU Parliament

see the revitalisation of the School Library. Following the cutting of the red ribbon to officially open the new library there was a vote of thanks from Head Boy, Callum Hall and Head Girl, Finn Manders, followed by a piece from Claire McHardy and a poem from Dillon McFarlane, both Pupil Librarians. Mr Connell was presented with a Quaich to commemorate the Official Opening. With the official part of the morning over Mr and Mrs Connell enjoyed chatting with some of the Pupil Librarians while a buffet lunch was served. Well done to everyone who was involved both on the day and in helping to get the new library up and running. Pictured right: Chatting with Douglas at the Library Opening


Senior Ski Course 2017 On Friday 10 February a group of 36 senior pupils and 4 members of staff set off on a 30 hour coach journey to Stumm in Austria. It was the beginning of the Senior Ski Course 2017. As you can see from the photos the weather was perfect and this made for a great weeks skiing which was enjoyed by everyone!

McLaren High School Pipe Band at the Scottish Championships On Sunday 12 March 2017 McLaren High School Pipe Band, pictured left, competed at the annual Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships, held at James Gillespie’s High School in Edinburgh. This year’s competition was the biggest Championships ever, with over 60 pipe bands competing in the different categories. Our band were competing in two categories – the Freestyle and the Debut B category. First up for the day was the Freestyle competition, where 4 pipers joined forces with pupils from the Trad band to play to a packed hall, adjudicated by, amongst others, Craig Munro from the Red Hot Chilli Pipers and Phil Cunningham! Performing pupils were Finn Manders, Max Menzies, Euan Lang and Callum Hall (all S6); Ailish Duthie, Hazel Imrie, Rebecca More and Drew Galloway (all S5); Greg McLachlan (S4); Catriona Norman and Eoin Brennan (S1). The band’s second event, the Debut B category, was performed by the whole band and was played to a busy hall and two distinguished judges. The pipers in the band were Callum Hall (S6); Rebecca More and Drew Galloway (S5); Cameron McLay (S4); James Douglas, Robin Turnbull and Cameron Dinwoodie (S2); Catriona Norman, Andrew McLay and Eoin Brennan (S1); and drum corps was made up of Jason Derrick and Jamie McAlpine (S6), and Jamie McNaught (S1). The band marched on looking very well disciplined and played their 2/4 March, Donald McLean’s Farewell to Oban, immaculately. We were all delighted with our performance, it was the best we had ever played it! After hearing the National Youth Pipe Band of Scotland playing the prizes were announced and were presented by Ruth Davidson. It was with huge excitement that McLaren High School was announced as taking 2nd place in the Debut B Category, collecting the prize of a shield and £300 from Ms Davidson. The final award of the day was the inaugural Endeavour Award, presented to a band that has developed in a vibrant and inclusive way, with enthusiasm and camaraderie, regardless of circumstances. McLaren High School were joint winners of this with Davidsons Mains School Pipe Band, a brilliant accolade. As our prize we won £500 and have the pleasure of keeping the biggest and heaviest shield ever for 6 months! Huge congratulations to the many people who have played their part in the continuing success of McLaren High School Pipe Band! Callum Hall S6 13


Ranger’s Review by Gareth Kett

The visitor season has started early this year for the Loch Lomond & the Trossachs National Park Ranger Service. You will have been hardpushed not to have noticed the “Camping Management Zone” signs that cropped up around the area in February heralding the imminent start of the new phase in camping management around the National Park. Excessive pressure on lochshore environments from the sheer volume of visitors and unacceptable levels of anti-social behavior has necessitated a tougher approach to camping management. It is hoped that new byelaws and camping restrictions will reduce antisocial behavior including littering, promote recovery of the lochshore wildlife and make our lochshores safer and more attractive to visitors. Less than 4% of the National Park (most of the busiest lochshores) falls into the new camping management ones. The National Park Ranger Service has been empowered to enforce byelaws associated with the camping management zones. For full details please visit the Loch Lomond & the Trossachs National Park website following this link http://www. lochlomond-trossachs.org/things-to-do/ camping/campingbyelaws/ . Byelaw training, and implementation has dominated the Ranger Service work programme over the latter part of the winter and early spring, but we have continued to deliver maintenance, conservation and education work. For the seventh year running we have ran the Salmon in the Classroom programme in association with the Tay Foundation. This year we’ve been working with Crianlarich Primary School. Through the project the pupils have carried out real conservation work while learning about the current plight of Atlantic salmon, their ecology and place in the economy. In bitter conditions, in mid-March the pupils made an artificial redd in Benmore Burn near Crianlarich and released the alevins that they had monitored hatching from eggs (supplied by the Tay Foundation) in a fridge in their classroom over the previous three weeks. All 100 eggs hatched and all the alevins survived to be released. Well done Crianlarich Primary! Sadly the number and size of Atlantic salmon returning to Scotland from feeding areas around the Faroe Isles and to the south of Greenland have decreased dramatically since the 1970s. Salmon face a number of pressures during their life-cycle including predation, poor water quality, disease and parasites (including sea lice linked to fish farms), poor habitat quality, breeding with escaped captive fish (which lack the genetic imprint to survive in the wild) and changes in food distribution at sea linked with warming sea temperatures (1). Because of this the Scottish Government has brought in regulations to ensure that salmon 14

fishing in domestic waters is sustainable. These regulations including mandatory catchand-release fishing in all areas before 1st April, and continuing throughout the season on watercourses where salmon stocks fall below defined conservation limits. Limited retention of salmon is permitted on watercourses meeting or exceeding their conservation limits. The retention of salmon caught in coastal waters is currently prohibited (2). Throughout the autumn, winter and summer months, the Ranger Service and Conservation Volunteer Steve Roberts (thanks again Steve) have monitored wetland bird populations on Lochs Earn and Lubnaig as part of the British Trust for Ornithology implemented Wetland Bird Survey. Data from across Britain is used by the Government and conservation organisations to inform conservation policy and management. Birds of prey are included in the survey. The species lists are as follows: Loch Earn: Mallard, Goldeneye, Tufted duck, Goosander, Mandarin duck, Little Grebe, Mute swan, Canada goose, Grey heron, Cormorant, Dipper, Kingfisher, Grey wagtail, Pied wagtail, Oystercatcher, Great Black-backed gull, Lesser black-backed gull, Black-headed gull, Common Gull, Common buzzard and Smew – a very rare record. Loch Lubnaig: Mallard, Goldeneye, Tufted duck, Teal, Goosander, Little Grebe, Mute swan, Whooper swan, Canada goose, Grey heron, Cormorant, Dipper, Pied wagtail, Common buzzard. With summer just around the corner we are looking for volunteers to monitor the Glen Ogle Butterfly Transect. Until recently the Ranger Service has monitored butterfly populations along a walking transect in Glen Ogle as part of Butterfly Conservation’s butterfly monitoring programme across the UK. Unfortunately due to visitor management commitments we are unable to continue this work. We are indebted to David Johnston who carried out the monitoring for us last season. Many thanks David. David is a busy man though and is unable to monitor the transect this year so we on the look-out for new surveyors. Weather permitting, monitoring takes the form of weekly walks along the 2km transect counting the butterflies seen. Please get in touch for more details if you are interested. You don’t have to be a butterfly expert as training and ID sheets will be provided. As usual if you have anything to discuss or any wildlife sightings to report you are welcome to drop into the Lochearnhead office, or contact me by email at gareth.kett@ lochlomond-trossachs.org, or call me on the Lochearnhead office number 01389 722040. If I’m not in the office, please leave a message and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Hopefully new byelaws will help to prevent littering and damage to trees.

References 1. Sime, I. 2003. River Runners, Freshwater pearl mussel, Atlantic salmon and Lampreys, SNH Design and Publications, Battleby, Perthhttp://www.gov.scot/Topics/ marine/Salmon-Trout-Coarse/fishreform/licence/status 2. Conservation Regulations – The Scottish Government http://www.gov.scot/Topics/marine/Salmon-TroutCoarse/fishreform/licence


Callander Rambling Club Sponsored by Caledonian Country Wear

The Club consists of a group of enthusiasts who meet regularly throughout the year to participate in a programme of strolls, rambles, hill walks and a Long Distance Path. Details are published on incallander.co.uk/ ramblers.htm in the Ben Ledi View and on posters around Callander. New members and guests are always welcome. Here are some dates for your diary: APRIL • Sat 1 April 08:30 Hill: Beinn Dearg (Glen Artney) (706m) Contact 01786 825877 • Wed 5 April 09:30 Stroll: Glen Finglas (5miles) Contact 01877 331834 • Sat 15 April 08:30 Hill: Creag MaccRanaich (809m) Contact 01877 331067 • Sat 22 April 08:30 Ramble: Circuit of Menteith Hills (7.5miles) Contact 01877 382682 • Sat 29 April 08:30 LDP: RB1 – Crieff to Comrie (10miles) Contact 01877 330032 MAY • Sat 6 May 08:30 Hill: the Pillars of Ben Ledi (879m) Contact 01877 330059 • Sat 13 May 08:30 Ramble: Glen Dochart to the Kingshouse (7miles) Contact 01877 330169 • Wed 17 May 09:30 Stroll: Fairy Knowe circuit (4.5miles) Contact 01877 382682 • Sat 27 May 08:30 LDP: RB2 – Comrie to St Fillans (10miles) Contact 01877 330032 We meet in Ancaster Square, unless otherwise indicated. Please bring wet weather clothing, appropriate footwear and a packed lunch. And please let the walk leader know if you plan to join the walk via the contact number given! Visitors and non-members welcome.

The aim of the U3A movement is to promote life-long learning and for the members the motto is: Learn, Laugh, Live; we hope that all our groups offer the opportunity to fulfil this. Getting together with our neighbouring U3A, Forth Valley, can give us more scope and in March several members of C&WP joined Forth Valley on a special outing to Caerlaverock Wildfowl and Wetland Centre on the Solway Firth. The day was spent learning about the work at the centre and watching the over-wintering birds, which included large numbers of Whooper swans and Barnacle geese, together with many species of duck. The social side of meeting with another U3A is not to be neglected and plans are afoot for a relaxed, informal summer event. Please look at our website ‘Callander and West Perthshire U3A’ for details of all our courses and information about forthcoming events.

Swans at Caerlaverock

Do you need an affordable home? Rural Stirling Housing Association aims to support local communities by providing quality homes at affordable rents for families, couples and single people in housing need. We currently have over 550 rented houses and flats. Around 50 of these become available for rent each year. We hope to have new properties in Strathblane and Balmaha soon and currently have properties in the following communities

Aberfoyle Deanston Gartmore Lochearnhead Balfron Doune Killin Strathyre Buchlyvie Drymen Kinlochard Stronachlachar Callander Gargunnock Kippen Tyndrum

We may be able to build in other communities in the future – please let us know to if you want to live in a village that is not listed above. Information on local housing need and demand helps us plan for the future. If you are interested one of our properties become available please

in renting when they contact us:

Rural Stirling Housing Association Stirling Road, Doune FK16 6AA Telephone: 01786 841101 Email: enquiries@rsha.org.uk www.rsha.org.uk

Registered as a Scottish Charity No. SC037849

15


BLS

Where Business Does the Talking

Mark and Susan Venables set up Highland Marketing, now regarded as the UK’s leading dedicated healthcare technology PR and marketing company, fifteen years ago. Today they now divide their time between the agency’s two offices in Balquhidder and Central London, which provide services for UK and global companies, government departments, including the NHS and other public sector organisations. Having lived at Tulloch Farm, Balquhidder for seventeen years, they talk here about the intricacies of the business, as well as the pros and cons of running a successful company from their base in the Highlands. What is the history of your business? In what year did you start Highland Marketing? Susan: It was in 2002, but prior to that I ran a similar business which was based in London. At this stage I was commuting to London every week, when it occurred to me I could actually run the agency from Scotland. However, because of the nature of what we do, and where the majority of our clients and network of contacts are based (including the media), we still need to commute to London regularly. What was your background before you started Highland Marketing? Susan: PR and Marketing has always been the focus of my career after graduating from Durham University with a degree in history & Politics. I first started working for a London agency which specialised in technology. The majority of clients were really big IT companies like IBM, Hewlett Packard and Microsoft, It was at that point that I developed an interest in healthcare and how technology could be used more effectively to help improve the delivery of healthcare services. That’s what made me make the decision to set up a business focused purely on healthcare technology. Mark’s background is also rooted in healthcare having previously set up and run a specialist IT infrastructure outsourcing business that delivered infrastructure solutions to over 40% of NHS trusts in England. 16

What are the type of PR and Marketing services you provide? Mark: We describe ourselves as a full service agency. We can provide anything from helping companies, healthcare providers and public sector organisations with their marketing strategies; we can write and review their messaging; develop and support their branding; as well as run their PR and communications programmes – these days that includes social media; advice on events and conferences to attend; creation and development of websites – building new ones as well as enhancing existing ones. We can, and do, help clients with every aspect of the broad spectrum of marketing and communications services, including the generation of leads and sales opportunities. How do you divide your work between your offices in London and the Highlands? Mark: We used to split our time on a fortnightly basis between here and London. Since the New Year however, we’ve been in London every week, partly because we’ve been settling in new staff and attending numerous new business meetings. Ideally we’d like to split it 50/50, that’s our goal. What are your key business values? Mark: In terms of what our clients look to us for, it’s our focused and dedicated understanding of their marketplace. We have been working in healthcare and technology for about thirty years. This has provided us with a detailed knowledge and understanding of what happens in the marketplace, as it is very complex, as well as the people and organisations

that are involved in it from governmentlevel down through to the Department of Health, NHS England, NHS Scotland, and the various care providers such as acute health board trusts, primary care practices and social care. We know a lot of that history, and this is what really makes us different to, let’s say, a big agency in London, Edinburgh or Manchester. They will work in several different vertical markets, for example retail, banking and finance and manufacturing. But what they won’t have is the same depth, knowledge and historical understanding of healthcare that we have. And that, fundamentally, is what makes us different. That’s why companies and organisations come to us to support their marketing and communication strategies within the UK marketplace as well as other international markets. Often this approach is made after they’ve realised that other agencies don’t understand enough about their market to be able to do the job properly for them. In healthcare and the public sector there’s a lot of jargon and acronyms. If you don’t understand the market, the acronyms and all the different idiosyncrasies, how can you possibly go and interview, say, a senior manager or clinician within an NHS organisation, and understand how to draw out the benefits of what it is they’re using in terms of IT to help them deliver better and safer services for patients? Due to our extensive experience, we are able to write something that’s credible, meaningful and useful. Susan: A lot of what we do is about content. That’s absolutely key. Our clients ask us to develop content for them,


Kasia’s Cookin’

Title Kasia Sujanova

which can then be used across various communications channels. That’s one of the things we hold very dear. A number of our team are ex-journalists, and we like to demonstrate that we can both understand the subject and write clearly about it. We really believe in what we do. Because we work in healthcare, we do think it is something that affects everyone’s lives. And the technology solutions provided by the companies we work with can make such a huge difference to the way healthcare services are delivered and the subsequent care provided for patients. Can you give an example of how your work has made a difference? Mark: One case study for a client that we produced, involved interviewing a number of clinicians that had been using its solution at NHS Fife. After six months of using the software, called Patientrack, to monitor the vital observations of patients across several wards, they were able to prove that by using this technology they could reduce the incidence of cardiac arrests by sixty percent. That had a tremendous impact on the patients’ welfare! It meant that fewer patients were having cardiac arrests, thus alleviating the pressure on hospital beds. This case study enabled us to take that story on behalf of Patientrack and the NHS Fife health board, and promote it to the national press, the Scottish Government and the Scottish health directorate. Exposure across the media was extensive with over fifty features in national, broadcast and local media detailing the benefits. As a result, the

project lead clinician was invited to present at one of the monthly eHealth board meetings consisting of the IT clinical leads from each of the fourteen health boards across Scotland. This provided an opportunity to present what benefits had been delivered from using the Patientrack technology and utilise content that we had created which clearly demonstrated the clinical and operational impact on patient safety and improved outcomes. In addition, we obtained further exposure through the use of media channels to ensure that more people could read about the great work that was going on at NHS Fife. That was last March. The BBC then picked it up and included it as a positive story in their recent week-long coverage on the state of the NHS. That is just one example of how, because of our detailed and in-depth understanding of the healthcare environment, we can develop a story and make it available to various stakeholders, the public, patients, the government and other healthcare organisations that perhaps wouldn’t otherwise have been aware of it. What are the difficulties and the advantages of being based in Balquhidder? Mark: I think the main disadvantage is the slow and unreliable broadband. We need to get this service improved, not just for us, but for everyone else that lives and works in the glen. Conversely, it’s a beautiful place to work from. When you have flown back from London and you then start your drive up the A84, you pass Callander and see the forested mountains and Loch

Lubnaig, you realise you’re entering your own little piece of heaven! That sense of peace, tranquillity and beauty helps to bring you back down to earth fairly quickly after the hustle and bustle of being in the city. You do then appreciate and enjoy the surroundings of your home. Susan: Another point about living here which you can see on our website, is that we’re proud to be based in Scotland. We’ve got our highland cattle as part of our branding, and the very name of our business reaffirms our Scottish connection. Clients really appreciate that aspect. How many people work for you in total? Mark: We have a team of twenty, which includes our industry advisers. The majority of our team are scattered throughout the UK. We specifically recruit people who’ve got experience of this market. Our industry advisers are all experts in their respective (healthcare and technology) fields. They range from a GP and Colonel in the Territorial Army, to an ex-IT director of a very large British healthcare software company. Susan: In terms of recruitment, the way we’re set up is we have people working here as well as in the London office, and a team who work virtually. We like to think that we’ve given an opportunity to our team, because the fact they don’t work in London doesn’t matter, what matters is that they’ve got the skills and experience we need. They can work remotely from home, but still contribute towards helping the business and servicing our clients. We also wanted to give local people an opportunity to get involved in this Continued overleaf 17


Continued from previous page

business. I feel that we’re able to give something back by offering employment opportunities locally, thereby contributing to the local economy. Over the last few years, we’ve had a number of local people, either employed full-time or working on projects or on a part-time basis. How do you get your clients? Is it through contacts you have already made? Mark: It’s basically word of mouth. Because we’ve been in this sector so long we’ve got an extensive network of contacts. Just to give an indication, I would say that in the last seven years we’ve probably only had to do two or three ‘competitive pitches’ to win new business. Can you tell me a bit about the digital side of your work? How have PR and marketing services changed with all the developments in the digital world? Susan: Thinking back to when I first started, nobody had ever heard of social different requests. The one thing they media. They hadn’t invented it! You still all want, so the one service we provide used to send your press releases out by every single one of our clients (and fax. We’ve had to make a huge shift in our they’ll pick and choose from the rest of business model in terms of the services them as and when they need them), is we deliver to accommodate digital public relations (PR). It’s the one thing marketing. It’s about bringing on board a they all need. It’s the most difficult thing team that specialises in new areas. There to do in-house, and to do well. That is are so many different communication why they need to work with people channels now, so our clients need to that really understand the market and know that we know how to use them how to build and maintain relationships to help get their information out to the with various journalists, whether it’s at the BBC, senior executive healthcare market in an optimal form. strategy publications, national media or technology publications. That’s what we Do you use social media platforms like specialise and focus on, having those Twitter and Facebook as well? Mark: For most of our clients, Facebook relationships. and the more consumer-based channels are not really appropriate. The only times Does government policy towards the we’ve ever used those would be when NHS affect your work? we were working with a clinical trials Susan: Absolutely. That’s one of the company or a private clinic that need things that affects any service we provide to engage with nurses and patients, for our clients, because NHS policies and for example. For most of our clients, initiatives are constantly changing, we whether technology companies or NHS have to monitor what’s coming out of organisations themselves, Twitter and the Department of Health, the Scottish LinkedIn tend to be the main social Government, the Welsh Assembly, NHS England, and the reviews and reports media digital platforms. Susan: Another key aspect is that we do published by the various committees. build, design and develop websites for We monitor those because that helps clients with social media incorporated us to inform our clients on the changes as a central element. We plan how they that are taking place in the market. The can use their websites effectively to drive NHS is very much driven by targets, and traffic to the site, so they can increase one of the key things about what our awareness and obtain prospect contact clients can deliver is to help NHS trusts details. Most of the team specialise in and boards and primary care providers achieve those targets. So, it’s very that area. important that they’re informed and up-to-date, because when they’re going What sort of clients do you have? Mark: Everything from global multi- out and talking to their clients, who are billion dollar technology organisations, NHS managers, consultants, clinicians, all the way through the spectrum they have to be knowledgeable of what to the SMEs (small to medium sized the challenges and issues are, and to enterprises). We’ve also launched demonstrate how they believe they can companies. We really do work with such address them. a variety of organisations. They all have Mark: For example, if you look at the 18

changes that the Scottish Government made last spring; they combined health and social care. A number of our clients have solutions that will help the Scottish Government to deliver that integration, that ability to share data. So, for example, when you go into a hospital, or present yourself in a social care environment, you don’t have to keep telling them who you are and what your address is. This is something that will resonate with most people who have experienced going from department to department in a hospital and having to keep stating who you are. People might think it’s all joined up, but it isn’t. There are silos of information all over the place which are simply not shared. So, government policy does very much affect the opportunity for us to help support our clients. Down in England for example, there’s the vision that the NHS must be paperless at the point of care and interactions with patients by 2020. The target is to have data and information about patients all held electronically, available for the clinician when he or she sits down with a patient. Most of it is still paper-based. The quicker all of that can be digitised and made available electronically, the better. If Britain does leave the EU single market, how might that affect your business? Mark: I don’t think it will affect or change our business at all. The reason we think that is because the challenge that the NHS faces is no different to the challenge the American healthcare environment faces, no different to France, Germany, Singapore, South Africa or Australia. Budgets are being overstretched, people are living longer, they’ve got more chronic diseases to deal with, and it’s a global challenge that everyone faces.


Susan: Also, we haven’t seen a decline in the enquiries that we’re getting from European countries. We’re currently talking to companies in Italy, Portugal and Denmark and we are also being asked to help UK and North American businesses take their solutions in to European markets such as Germany and France, as well as the Nordics. There are a number of businesses with technologies they’ve developed in other countries that still want to come to the UK because they believe their solutions can help the NHS, which ultimately means helping us, the patients. What are your company’s plans for the future? Mark: We’d like to get to about three times the size that we are today. We’ve had good steady growth over the last five-six years. And we want to carry on being known and respected for delivering good, knowledgeable services and results for our clients, whether they’re technology companies, government departments, NHS health providers or clinical research organisations. We believe we are the leading, most focused and prominent agency that does what we do in our market in the whole of the UK. Finally, what do you appreciate most about life in Balquhidder? Mark: Outdoor pursuits and nature. The binoculars are on the desk all the time, you don’t know when you’re going to see a golden eagle, osprey or goldfinch! Susan used to be a rower at a very competitive level, so our goal was always to live near water in Scotland (Susan’s mother is Scottish). We’ve achieved all of that. But the challenge for us is having the time to go and put a sculling boat on Loch Voil. It is the ability to be able to enjoy the beautiful countryside, follow our pursuits, and have a smallholding. So yes, who wouldn’t want to live here?

Scottish Wildlife Trust: Short-eared Owls Short-eared owl on nest

Short-eared owl chick

In February our Scottish Wildlife Trust Group was treated to the findings of twenty years of studying short-eared owls in Perthshire. Speaker Neil Morrison, typically of members of the Scottish Raptor Study Group (SRSG), spends an incredible amount of time in this field. It is believed that the UK population of thei little-studied bird may be as low as 600 - 1500 pairs. Although mainly hunting at night, dawn & dusk, short-eared owls are one of the most active British owls during daylight, especially in the breeding season. A few may over-winter in marshes and coastal grasslands but most will migrate to Scandinavia, even Russia, the Mediterranean and N Africa. Returning in mid-February they take about a month to hold a territory, usually in heather moorlands. When bonding they may display at any time of day; swooping, diving, chasing and wing-clapping and, especially when sunny, they can circle up to thousands of feet. The nest is usually a shallow depression in rank heather, lined with short grass, but site selection has rarely been seen. The first egg is laid around mid-March with the full single clutch over three to four weeks. They feed on small mammals, especially voles - and in good years may fledge 12-17 young that develop at different rates. To avoid predators (including foxes, corvids and buzzards), they rely on sitting very still on the nest and often land twenty yards away and walk through the vegetation. Short-eared owls have proved relatively easy to catch with mist nets as they hunt looking downwards. Radio tagging has increased data coverage and shown that they hunt over bigger territories and for longer periods than observed visually, often over higher ground at night. If food is plentiful they may share lower ground with longeared owls. Satellite tags have recently been fitted to five owls and should give more information on where they go in winter. However, these are very expensive and use of colour leg-rings will continue to give cheaper information from photographs. For lots more information see http://www.scottishraptorstudygroup.org/index.html Lesley Hawkins

Scottish Wildlife Trust Talks

(SWT) Callander Group

(final meeting until next season, starting in September)

Tuesday 11 April

Several short talks + brief AGM Meet 7:30pm in Callander Kirk Hall. Suggested donations: £2 members, £2.50 non-members, free to full-time students, includes tea/coffee & biscuits.

Interview by Iona Mchedliani

Interested parties can refer to the company’s website: http://www.highland-marketing.com/ For enquiries, Mark Venables can be contacted at: markv@highland-marketing.com 19


Balquhidder, Lochearnhead & Strathyre Community Council Minutes of a meeting held at The Broch, Strathyre on 22 February 2017 Please note that these minutes have not yet received formal approval and should be considered as a draft version only. Present: Malcolm McNaughton (MM), Paul Hicks (PH), Alice Duncan (AD), Ruth McLusky (RM), Adrian Squires (AS), Karen Methven (KM), Angus Cameron (AC), Richard Eastland (RE), Loraine Telfer (LT) (had to leave early). Apologies: David Johnston. Cathy McGregor, Strathyre. In attendance: Cllr Alycia Hayes (AH), Theresa Elliot (TE), Stirling Council; PC Will Diamond (WD), Police Scotland; Rory Gilchrist (RG), Lochearnhead; Alan McGregor (AM) and Bill Lindsay (BL), Strathyre. 1) Approval of Minutes It was proposed by AD, and seconded by KM, that the minutes of the meeting on 11th January 2017 should be accepted, and this was approved unanimously. 2) Declarations of Interest No declarations were made. 3) Police Report Between 10th January and 19th February 2017, there were no thefts or burglaries in our area, or offences involving anti-social behaviour. On the night of 16-17th January, outside the Munro Inn in Strathyre, a vehicle collided with a parked car, causing some damage. The driver failed to stop. On 8th February, a second such incident took place in Main Street, Strathyre, when a heavy goods vehicle overtook a van within the 30 mph limit, and collided with the van. The driver of the HGV failed to stop, but was later traced and reported for a number of road traffic offences. On 26th January in Lochearnhead, a motorist was detected travelling through the 30mph restricted area at over 50mph. The driver has been reported to the Procurator Fiscal. High visibility patrols and static road checks continued in order to deter and detect travelling criminals, but PC Diamond was away on leave for two and half weeks during this period. 4) Matters Arising Pavement in Lochearnhead. PH reported having met on 9th February in Lochearnhead with George Fiddes (Transport Scotland) and John Wrigley (BEAR) for a site visit in relation to the CC’s request for a pavement beside the A85 along a stretch from the old water sports centre as far as the junction with Auchraw Brae. Mr Wrigley explained that, because the road in question is a trunk road, there are regulations that apply to the construction and size of a ‘pavement’. However, he said that in areas where insufficient room existed for a regular pavement, BEAR had developed an alternative solution that they referred to as a ‘hardened edge’. This involved digging a trench at the side of the road, approximately half a metre in depth and one metre wide. The trench was filled with ‘Type 1’ gravel to a point almost level with the road, then topped with ’Type 1 Dust’ - a fine combination of dust and gravel that was compacted to form a reasonably solid surface on which people can walk, use pedestrian vehicles, and even cycle. The construction also provided better drainage. PH believed that this proposal would be acceptable to the local landowners, and it had been agreed that BEAR would put together a formal proposal to submit to Transport Scotland. It would be dependant on agreement from the landowners, and might involve getting planning permission to remove one or two trees. Any fencing would be replaced by BEAR at no cost to the owner. This development was warmly welcomed by members. 5) Planning Matters (split item - see below for points {b} and {c}) a) Craggan House, Lochearnhead. (Ref: 2016/0384/DET). AS reported that the community council had provided feedback, especially about the additional traffic likely to be generated by this development. We had also commented on the growing imbalance between residential housing and holiday homes, and concluded with a request that the application be rejected. RG believed that it was likely that the current application would be rejected, but that the applicant would probably submit a further application. However, he added that the National Park planners had referred the current application to Transport Scotland with regard to the likely increase in traffic at the junction of Craggan Lane with the A84 trunk road, and they had expressed concern regarding the restricted sight-lines at this junction. It could be that any further development would require the mouth of this junction to be expanded, with a consequent loss of land for properties on the North side of the junction, and the expansion of the village boundary on the South side, in order to adjust the start of the 30mph speed restrictions so that a longer sight-line could be cleared. These requirements could raise further objections to any alternative planning proposal submitted. 6) Boulodrome in Strathyre Alan McGregor, a resident of Keip Road, Strathyre, wished to propose to the community council that a ‘boulodrome’ be constructed in Strathyre: a small space where people could play the game of ‘boules’ (or Pétanque). The Scottish Pétanque Association was formed in 1985 with a local branch in Perth, and the game is becoming more popular all the time. This was confirmed by AC who said that a ìboulodromeî had been constructed recently at Briar Cottage in Lochearnhead. AD suggested that some space in the Forestry Commission grounds might be an ideal location if permission could be sought, but BL then said that he had spoken previously about this with Cathy McGregor and was willing to construct a suitable court beside The Broch Café. AM said that this would be an excellent solution and it was agreed that Cathy and BL would talk further about it. Action: BL to provide a court for public use at The Broch. 7) Community Council Connect Fund PH explained that, earlier in the year, the community council had been awarded a grant of £362 by Stirling Council towards the cost of developing a local website in conjunction with The Villagers magazine. Unfortunately, it had not been possible to complete this project within the time-scale required by Stirling Council, and the money would now need to be returned. PH said that the magazine editor and her team were still hoping to produce a website, but the change to producing a magazine in colour (instead of black and white) had taken up more time than anticipated over the past six months or so. PH suggested that, a second application might be made in the coming financial year if plans for a joint website could be completed in time. TE suggested asking for an extension before returning the money. This might save the time and trouble of making a further application. This was agreed. Action: PH to request an extension. 8) Economic Development (Stirling Council) PH advised members that he had been notified that Stirling Council had set up a new team devoted to Economic Development locally. He suggested that it might be helpful to ask the team leader, Steven MacDonald, to attend a future CC meeting, in order to give a presentation on this project. AH added that this was related to the ‘Smart Cities’ development scheme under which Stirling would be getting some additional money. The team is tasked with exploring ways of spending money more efficiently in rural areas, looking for ìkey attractorsî. She confirmed that it would be good to invite Steven to attend and this was agreed by everyone. Action: PH to invite SM to next CC meeting. 9) Road sign, Lochearnhead PH reported that he had received a complaint from a resident of Cameron Court in Lochearnhead, regarding vehicles stopping at the site of the former garage in order for occupants to relieve themselves nearby. The resident had suggested that it might help to divert people if a sign could be put up, indicating that there are public toilets a short distance away on the A85. AC said that he thought there was already a sign at the junction with the A84 by the war memorial. It was agreed that, if a sign already existed, a request should be made to move it further back from the junction, but that if the sign was no longer there, a new sign should be requested. Action: PC to contact BEAR regarding sign to toilets. (Note from Secretary: A large sign already exists at the junction.) 10) Bus shelter, Lochearnhead PH had also received a complaint about the state of the bus shelter on the southbound side of the A85, opposite Cameron Court. This was in need of urgent repair and improvement. It was agreed that the shelter should be repaired, but it was not clear who might own it. It was eventually decided that initial contact should be made with Stirling Council. Action: PH to contact Stirling Council regarding repairs. 11) Bye-laws and clear-ways PH reported having met on 10th February with Lauren Grant (LG), Stirling Council Solicitor, and Claire Travis (CT), National Park, regarding the proposed extension to the Alcohol bye-law. This was a very useful meeting at which changes to the original local boundaries drawn up by the community council were agreed in order to conform more closely with the National Park Camping Management Areas. CT had also agreed to make available suitable maps for Stirling Council. LG said that Ward Councillors had expressed concerned about the full implications of the bye-law being explained properly to local people, so that everyone understood that the legislation would apply to them as well as visitors. This was accepted. MM then asked how things were progressing with the adjoining areas at St Fillans and Callander. PH replied that LG had been unable to contact anyone at Callander community council, and progress had been slow with her colleague at Perth & Kinross Council. PH suggested that Stirling could still proceed with its own legislation, and this was confirmed by AH. Several comments were made about the camping bye-law: notices had started appearing but some were rather vague, and some are clearly in the wrong place! Local residents have already contacted the National Park about the latter. TE mentioned that there would be a drop-in session at Strathyre Village Hall on Monday 27th February, probably between 4-8 p.m. to enable people to see what the camping management areas were all about. 12) Correspondence a) Sale of National Forest Estate near Balquhidder. MM reported that the Forestry Commission was proposing to sell around 700 acres (286 hectares) of former woodland at Gartnafuaran and Stronvar. The proceeds would be used to plant new areas of woodland elsewhere. Under the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act of 2015, eligible community bodies (such as community councils or trusts) may acquire land or buildings at below market rate in order to use them for some local benefit, socially, economically or environmentally. Assets may be purchased freehold, or on various leases or short-term licence arrangements. MM added that a purchase of this nature would be something better handled by the BLS Trust, but suggested that this particular property would not be an attractive purchase for the community. AC confirmed this and it was generally agreed that it was not something worth pursuing, but that the correspondence should be passed to the BLS Trust for consideration. Action: PH to forward letter to BLS Trust. b) Alcohol Licence Variation - Mhor 84. PH advised members that the owner of Mhor 84 had applied for permission to increase its capacity for ‘on sales from 80 to 130. This appears to be a technical provision that relates to the amount of physical space available. AH confirmed that this was likely, and that it was probably intended that Mhor 84 would use the adjacent premises that previously belonged to Sula as an extension to the existing business. There were no objections raised to this application. 5) Planning Matters (resumed from item 5 above) b) Recent planning applications. AS mentioned three fresh applications that had been made: Lochearnhead - Earnbank Cottage. Balquhidder - Tomnavoulin; renewal of a previously granted permit. Balquhidder - Kirkton Cottage; refurbishment and extension. None of these applications was thought likely to be contentious and no objections were raised. c) Consultation on Scottish Planning System. AS explained that the Scottish Government is running a consultation on the planning system in Scotland. They have asked four key questions and invited all community councils to submit responses. This was discussed at some length and, given the time-scale (4th April), it was decided that four members should each take one question and prepare a response. All four responses would then be circulated to all members for comment. The questions were allocated as follows: KM - Will the proposed package improve development planning? PH - Will the proposals improve community involvement in planning? AS - Will the proposals deliver more homes? RE - Will the proposals improve the way that planning is resourced? Action: Responses to be prepared and circulated for comment, then submitted together. 13) Matters From Councillors a) AH said that it would be her last meeting. She will not be standing for re-election. Martin Earl will be standing again, but it’s not yet known who the other candidates will be. b) Stirling Council’s annual budget is looking better than previously expected. The original 1.5% cut (£120M to £118M) will be off-set by a rise (of 3%) in some categories of council tax. A further £2.3M will be provided under the ‘Smart Cities’ project, plus £1.5M from central government for ‘educational attainment’. The roads budget is still going to be under-resourced, however, but the social care budget which was overspent by £2M last year has now been increased by £1.8M. 14) Any Other Competent Business a) Glen Kendrum Hydro Scheme. PH reported that RE had enquired about this project that had been passed to the BLS Trust in December 2013. PH had been advised that the project was never completed, but other members refuted this and said that it was both constructed and now operating. PH said that he would make further enquiries regarding this. Action: PH to make further enquiries with BLS Trust. (Note from Secretary: This project was duly completed by Gilkes Energy and started generating in December 2016.) b) Viewpoint, Strathyre. AD reported that a local resident had complained about the presence of a tree sited at a viewpoint just North of Keip Farm. AD displayed some photographs of the site, but members were of the opinion that the tree hardly interfered with the view and did not consider that felling the tree would be justified. The same resident had asked whether some undergrowth beside the bridge and path leading up to the school could be cleared. AD said that this work will form part of the construction work to take place at the school and suggested that it would be better to leave it until that work begins. This was agreed.

c) Complaints about roads. KM reported that a resident in Balquhidder had complained about three separate locations where there were problems on roads that needed attention. - A84, just North of ‘Annie’s Straight’. At the southern end of Loch Lubnaig, the bank has eroded almost to the road and there is no crash barrier. PH replied that this had been identified previously and reported to BEAR, but it actually lay outwith our own community council area. PH offered to contact BEAR again about this. Action: PH to report the danger to BEAR. - Coshanachie Brae, Balquhidder Road. This was a steep section of road, not far from Mhor 84, which was difficult to negotiate in icy weather, and there was no salt available to help with this. It was decided that a request should be made to Stirling Council for a pile of salt to be delivered here. Action: PH to request salt from Stirling Council. - Balvaig Bridge. A section of the bridge had been damaged earlier this year, and the resident was concerned that the damage was becoming ever worse due to the poor weather conditions. PH responded that an engineer from Stirling Council had already inspected the site but concluded that no work could be done on it until weather conditions improved around early May. This was because of the bridge’s

construction with lime mortar. Any temporary work with concrete would not attach properly to the lime and could make the damage worse, but a lime mortar could not be properly prepared until the weather improved. Fixing a temporary covering was also difficult because of the narrow width of road available. It was agreed that the best course of action would be to respect the advice of the qualified road engineer. d) Lechine Cottage, Lochearnhead. At the meeting on 11th January, it had been decided (item 4e refers) to contact BEAR, asking for a warning sign to be erected on the A85, just West of Lechine Cottage on the eastern side of Lochearnhead. BEAR had agreed to do this but AH reported that an incident had taken place at this location earlier that evening. It was not clear whether or not it involved vehicles entering or leaving this particular property, but the sign had not yet been constructed and this reinforced the need for it. It was agreed that the previous request should be reiterated. Action: PH to contact BEAR regarding warning sign. e) Overhanging trees in Balquhidder Glen. MM reported that he had received a complaint from a local resident about trees overhanging the road at various point along Balquhidder Glen. This is the responsibility of local landowners, but it was suggested that perhaps Stirling Council could be prevailed upon to write to all local landowners, reminding them of their responsibilities to trim foliage and undergrowth on their property. This was agreed. Action: PH to contact Stirling Council asking for letters to be sent. f) Graveyard at Balquhidder. A complaint had been received regarding rubbish bins being left outside the front of the graveyard from properties along a track that goes up beside the cemetery. The bins have to be left here for collection, but they make the place very unattractive for relatives and other visitors. It was suggested that perhaps a small compound or shelter could be built to house the bins. AH offered to try and resolve this problem. Action: AH to liaise with Stirling Council. g) Bins not collected in Strathyre. BL picked up on this problem and added that rubbish bins are still not being collected on Saturdays (as advertised) in parts of Strathyre, including his own premises at The Broch. Again, this presents a very poor image of the area for tourists and visitors, who represent the main income for our area. Can this be addressed? AH said that the new system of collecting bins was still experiencing problems due to a shortage of staff and vehicles, but she would pass on this complaint to Waste Services. Action: AH to liaise with Waste Services at Stirling Council.

h) Gift for Cllr Hayes. AD suggested that it would be good to mark the service given by Cllr Hayes with a small gift. This was agreed, and AD will purchase flowers or something suitable. Action: AD to purchase a gift. There was no other business and, at 9:25 p.m., MM declared the meeting closed. The next meeting is due to take place at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday 5th April 2017 at the Village Hall, Strathyre.

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The Villagers’ Contacts Jill Johnston Editor Gardeners Cottage Balquhidder FK19 8PB 01877 384227

Gill Waugh Production Manager Stronvar Farm Balquhidder FK19 8PB 01877 384203

David Johnston Production Gardeners Cottage Balquhidder FK19 8PB 01877 384227

Andrew Poulter Advertising Coire A Chroine Balquhidder FK19 8PB 01877 384784 / 07816 042332

Copy Deadline Day is the 21st of the month. Send your contributions to: contact@the-villagers.org.uk

Please help us to get The Villagers to you as soon as possible! •

DIARY DATES •

We e k l y A c t i v i t i e s Monday

Lunch Club - The Scout Station, Lochearnhead - 12.30pm - 2.30pm

Tuesday

Keep Fit - Lochearnhead Hall - 10.30 to11.30am Gaelic Playgroup - Balquhidder Hall - 10.30am to 12.30pm St Fillans Music Circle - Sandison Hall - 12.45pm to 4.00pm. Light lunch included. Contact: David Anderson (01764 670829) / Bill Thow (01764 670836). Country Dancing - St Fillans

Other Contacts...

Lochearnhead Contact: Ali Ferguson 01567 830 405 St Fillans Contact: Isobel Howell 07876 031768 Strathyre Contact: Wullie Dalziel 01877 384 384 Mobile 07768 221661 Mail Order Distribution: Andrea Poulter 01877 384784 The Villagers’ Photographer

Jason Allardyce

www.allardycephotography.co.uk facebook.com/allardycephotography 01877 384295 / 07508 595211 Wedding, Portrait, Social, Pet Photography

Wednesday Yoga - Balquhidder Hall - 11.00am to 12noon (contact Ann Cobbett 01877 376291) Youth Club - Lochearnhead Hall - 7.00 to 9.00pm Thursday

Darts League - The Inn & Bistro - 7.00pm Choir Occasional - Balquhidder Village Hall - 7.30 to 9pm (contact Gill 01877 384203)

Friday

Playgroup - Lochearnhead Hall - 10.00am-12 noon (Contact Mel Brydie 01877 384668)

APRIL 2017 10

Voices in a Mystery - St Serfs, Comrie - 7pm - see page 9

11

SWT Talk and AGM - Callander Kirk - 7.30pm - see page 19

18

Lochearnhead Village Hall AGM - 7.30pm - see page 6

MAY 2017

13

Race Night, Lochearnhead - see page 6

26-28

MHOR Festival - see page 4

26-28

Strathyre Music Festival - see back page

Councillor Martin Earl Stirling Council, Old Viewforth, Stirling FK8 2ET 01786 443497 Mobile 07881 310 922 earlm@stirling.gov.uk Councillor Alycia Hayes Stirling Council, Old Viewforth, Stirling FK8 2ET 01786 443497 Mobile 07881 310 924 hayesa@stirling.gov.uk Councillor Fergus Wood Stirling Council, Old Viewforth, Stirling FK8 2ET 01786 443497 Mobile 07824 496 019 woodf@stirling.gov.uk

CHURCH SERVICES Balquhidder, Lochearnhead, Strathyre and St. Fillans CHURCH OF SCOTLAND

Balquhidder Parish Church Registered Charity No. SCO12316

Sunday 11.30am Minister: Russel Moffat Dundurn Church, St Fillans Sunday11.30am Minister: Rev Graham McWilliams Tel: 01764 671 045

ROMAN CATHOLIC

Callander, St Joseph the Worker Sunday 11.30am Saturday Vigil Mass 5.30pm from May through to September Killin, in the Episcopal Church Sunday 2.30pm Father Jim McCruden 2 Ancaster Square, Callander Tel: 01877 330 702

SCOTTISH EPISCOPAL CHURCH

Pin Feathers photos, page 9: Answers are 1) We all know what this is - a Giraffe! 2) The bark pattern on an Ash Tree . 3) For the gardening Buffs: only the size of a pea... it’s a pod on a Magnolia Stellata. 4) Frost pattern on car window. 5) Frost Spectrum on grass. 6) Two spots of Coal Tar Creosote on wet concrete.

St Angus’s Church, Lochearnhead 1st Sunday each month - 11.30am Communion 2nd Sunday - 5.30pm Evensong 3rd Sunday -11.30am Communion 4th Sunday - 5.30pm Evensong 5th Sunday (if applicable) 5.30pm - FOOD FOR THOUGHT A reflective time to discuss contemporary issues in a spiritual context (Check with Rector for venue: 01764 655389)

Vestry Secretary - Maureen Lipscomb Tel: 01567 830234

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T H E V I L L AGERS ’ TRADE DIRECTORY

We’ll send you or your friends The

Villagers

Cost for 11 issues: Inland £20.00, Europe £40.00, Rest of world £50.00 Please send completed form with cheque made payable to:

BLS Newspaper Association

BLS Newspaper Association, The Villagers Subscriptions Coire a Chroine, Balquhidder, LOCHEARNHEAD FK19 8PB Remittance enclosed: £....................... (Please do not send cash) Please send copies of The Villagers for one year (11 issues) to: Name: ................................................................................................................................. Address: ............................................................................................................................. .................................................................................Postcode: .......................................... Tel. No: ........................................ Email: ............................................................................ Subscriber’s name and address if different from above: Name: ................................................................................................................................. Address: ............................................................................................................................. .................................................................................Postcode: .......................................... Tel. No: ........................................ Email: ............................................................................

Cheques for advertising and mail order subscriptions should be made out to: The BLS Newspaper Association

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S U P P O RT Y OUR LOCAL S UP P LIERS !

Printed by Graphics and Print Services, University of Stirling Tel: 01786 467209 email: graphicsandprint@stir.ac.uk Published by The BLS Newspaper Association

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The villagers april 2017  

Highland Marketing, Pin Feathers, McLaren High School, Church News, Scottish Wildlife Trust and more from the Villagers of Lochearnhead, St...

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