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Issue 178

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A community magazine serving the residents of Peebles and Cardrona Delivered FREE to every home in the area

July 2020


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As the lockdown begins to ease we must all remember that COVID-19 has not gone away, it is still there, and if we don’t follow the advice given by the Scottish Government, it could come back with a vengeance. It was a very strange June without Beltane, but it was good to see the efforts people went to decorate the town. Steve was out and about with his camera, and you can see his pictures on page 26 and 27. Beltane was, however “in the news” as some of the costumes came in for criticism, in light of the global protests engendered by the BLM movement around institutional racism. Our Big Issue looks at the discussions surrounding the debate; however, I want to pay tribute to the way the Beltane Committee and the mature and sensible way they have reacted. Our festival must be welcoming to all people, and thanks to their reaction it will continue to be so.

We have decided to rerun the Peebles Portrait of Bill Goodburn. He appeared in our April issue which we were not able to deliver to everyone.


Issue 178


Peebles Pensioners Association


Peebles and District CAB


Peebles Silver Band


Peebles Portrait - Bill Goodburn


A very different Beltane


Peeblesshire Youth Trust News


Exploring the Past with Peeblesshire Archaeological Society


#eastgateathome video campaign


A community magazine serving the residents of Peebles and Cardrona Delivered FREE to every home in the area

We have updates from some of the local clubs and associations which form the backbone of the town. They are all monitoring Government advice and will be back operating as quickly as it is safe to do so. We will do our best to keep people updated through the magazine and website, so please if you are involved in any club or group keep us posted by email, and we will do our best to get the message out.

Finally, our column from Citizens Advice focuses on redundancy and workers rights. Unfortunately, one of the legacies of the pandemic will be the failure of businesses, and we should all pledge to do what we can to minimise the impact in Peebles by shopping locally and using local businesses. If we do, we can make a difference.



Welcome to the July edition of Peebles Life. Firstly I would like to say how delighted we are to be able to return to the traditional printed and delivered format of the magazine. As for many local businesses, the last few months have been very tough, and we are delighted that things are beginning to return to normal. We are keen to do our bit to help local groups spread their news, and promote the great local businesses in the town.

Tweeddale Youth Action

34 July 2020

Recipe from Val at Thyme to Dine


The Peebles Garden


Peebles Community Council


Light at the end of the tunnel


Fitness advice from Lesley Mitchell




Contact Linda about advertising or events. Phone 01896 831011 07595 847335 Email linda@peebleslife.com Post 14 Fawnburn Crescent

Cardrona, Peebles, EH45 9LG

Editor - Charles Cormack Advertising - Linda Cormack Editorial - Steve Dubé



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Big Issue By Steve Dubé

We’ve missed the festivities of Beltane this year. It’s the first time the festival was cancelled since 1896, and back then it simply didn’t exist. We enjoyed the bunting and the pipers playing outside their homes, and there were imaginative online events, but so much was missed. If Beltane itself shrank, there was plenty of background kerfuffle. As the world reacted to the brutal killing of George Floyd, an outburst on social media called out elements of the Beltane festival as racist. Someone declared that the Beltane organising committee should “take responsibility for addressing racism within the festival”, and a petition signed by 500 people proclaimed: “If there cannot be an antiracist Beltane, there cannot be a Beltane”. The petitioners argued that costumes worn by children in the Beltane Queen Festival processions “must not appropriate any culture.” It went on: “Therefore, costumes may have to be completely rethought and binned, and any face-painting which is racist or appropriates a culture most not be repeated.” Cultural appropriation is when members of one culture appropriate one or more elements of another. It’s considered improper when people from a dominant culture make use of features of a disadvantaged minority tradition. The petition calls on the Beltane organisers to rethink the costumes and ban any, including any face-painting, “which is racist or appropriates a culture”. It sounds simple, but it’s not that straightforward. Looking at the list of characters in the Beltane Queen Festival, the colourful “Indians” in the Wild West section might be regarded as a clear example of cultural appropriation. The First Nation North American culture was subjected to genocide, dispossession and cultural destruction by white European immigrants. Native North Americans counted as nothing and are still dismissed as irrelevant – unless, and sometimes even when, they vigorously assert their human rights over land or minerals coveted by corporations or government. Look closer and there may be other less obvious examples. Should there be a ban on costumes from countries once forcibly annexed to the British Empire? And what of gipsies, disadvantaged and suppressed? The reaction of the Peebles March Riding and Beltane Queen Festival Committee to the petition was exemplary. A statement condemned bigotry,

discrimination and xenophobia as having no place in the festival or society and confirmed that the festival is “open to all to enjoy, irrespective of race, creed or orientation”. The committee expressed disappointment that the matter was raised within the whirlwind of social media when there had been no complaint. They declared a commitment to work with “a specialist lawyer in equality matters” and invited those who expressed concerned to join them: the committee needs new members. Times change. Golliwog was a loveable character created by the 19th-century children’s writer Florence Kate Upton. Enid Blyton later used one in her books and a golliwog became a favourite children’s toy across Europe and Australia. As 20th-century awareness grew of the apartheid practised in South Africa and the US, they became symbols of something very different. Racists referenced drew on the character for the derogatory term “wog”. Golliwogs were removed from advertising graphics and in 2002 from Robertson’s jam jar labels, and banned by the Beltane organisers, although more than a dozen turned up in the 1999 centenary festival. The latest row followed a newspaper’s use in its “Nostalgia” pages of a photo of four women blacked up as Jamaica’s Olympic bobsleigh team in the Hawick Common Riding three years ago. There are few Black, Asian or ethnic minority (BAME) residents in Peebles – so few they may sometimes feel isolated. Most of us do not have to confront or even consider racism, let alone imagine being on the other side of discrimination based on colour or cultural difference. Some people have been uncomfortable with some Beltane costumes for a while, not knowing how to broach the matter without appearing negative or unsupportive. It’s no coincidence that the issue saw the light of day at the same time as racism so clearly and tragically surfaced once again in the USA. But we should understand that any changes may not happen overnight. Making costumes takes time. There are only so many volunteers giving up their spare time to create them. Peebles Life hopes that this exchange and the positive response of the Beltane organisers puts the issue to rest and encourages people to join the committee and help with the triumph of volunteering and organisation that enables this fantastic festival to brighten our summers.

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Peebles Pensioners Association

We have now been in lockdown for over three months and I hope that all members are doing well. I know how difficult it must be for you all, but it is so important to look after yourself so that when lockdown is finally lifted, we will all be able to get back to what is being called “the new normal”. As we go into July, whilst lockdown is easing, we are unable to plan to restart the monthly meetings in the autumn session until we are absolutely sure that it is safe for us to do so. As a member group, I have been in touch with Age Scotland and they are putting together a toolkit to help groups like the Pensioners, to plan our return and to decide what will be the new normal. This will necessitate a completely new Risk Assessment, to make sure that we can function safely. All announcements will be made in Peebles Life. Just to remind you that Age Scotland has a helpline where older people can phone for advice or even just for a chat and their helpline phone number is 0800 12 44 222 open Monday to Friday 9am - 5pm.

Peebles Pensioners Association now has a website at www.peeblespensioners.org. This is for members only and requires our members to log in with the username and password, which they were sent at the end of March 2020. If members did not receive their username and password (this email may be in your junk folder), then please email (details below) as soon as possible and I will resend. With the username and password, this gives members access to the members area, where the chatroom and group discussions can be found. If any member is not on the email contact list, please send me a message and I will add you. I know that I am very much missing seeing the members of the Pensioners whether that be at the monthly meetings or just down the street for a chat and I look forward to seeing you as soon as is practical. Laura Scott (Secretary) 07484 663518 / peeblespensioners@btinternet.com

Tweed Valley Cooks Right at the start of lockdown a local chef, Stu Waterston, came up with the idea of connecting communities through a Facebook page called Tweed Valley Cooks. This Facebook page was fantastic at connecting different generations and communities, provided support and advice when supplies were short and supporting the health and wellbeing of its 600+ members. As often with grass roots groups an idea developed organically to produce a cook book, raising money for charity, harnessing community spirit and providing a lasting record of these fantastic resilient recipes. The book is almost ready, containing

information about the recipes, the people and where possible suppliers. This book will be available online and in spiral bound printed copy. A suggested donation of either £3 or £5 accordingly. All monies raised will go directly to Borders Women's Aid. If you or your organisation would like to help in some way, please get in touch. If you have a supplier you'd like acknowledged, an outlet you'd like to sell the book from or a financial contribution you'd like to make we'd love to hear from you via our Facebook page. www.facebook.com/groups/252830495735458/

Calling all musicians...... If you’ve been up into the attic, found your old musical instrument and dusted it off to help while away the hours during lockdown, don’t stop!! Why not come along and join in with Peebles concert band? We meet on a Wednesday night for practice and good fun ably led and directed by our musical director

Vaughan Fleischfresser. The band is a friendly community wind band with players of all abilities and ages.....in fact, our mantra is ‘any age, any stage’ For more information or an informal contact, have a look at Peebles Concert Band Facebook page!

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REDUNDANCY – KNOW YOUR RIGHTS As we come to the end of Government fully funding the Coronavirus Job Protection Scheme it is sadly likely that some employers will feel that they cannot afford to pay towards furloughing their staff and may choose to make them redundant if they cannot re-open their businesses profitably. This will be difficult for staff and employers, but it is always important that the right processes are followed, people are treated with respect and their rights are maintained. The first question to address is whether you are an employee, a worker or self-employed; only employees are entitled to redundancy pay so it is particularly important to have clarity on this point.

Consultation If there is a real redundancy situation the employer needs to consult with the employee or employees; the period of consultation is dependant upon the number of redundancies which will be made.  Fewer than 20 redundancies  There are no set rules around when to begin consultation before giving redundancy notices.  20 to 99 redundancies within 90 days in 1 workplace  Consultation must begin at least 30 days before giving the first redundancy notice.  100 or more redundancies within 90 days in 1 workplace

Secondly, if you are an employee, how long have you been employed? To receive redundancy payment you must have been employed for at least 2 years and the amount of your payment, under the Statutory Redundancy Scheme, will be calculated using a combination of your age and the number of years of service with your employer.

Consultation must begin at least 45 days before giving the first redundancy notice.

You should also review any employment documentation to determine whether you have a contractual redundancy scheme which will provide an enhanced payment above what the government has mandated.

Selection for Redundancy

Redundancy Process Before making employees redundant the employer should try to:        

offer voluntary redundancy or early retirement agree to flexible working temporarily reduce working hours ask employees to stop working for a short time retrain employees to do other jobs in the business let go of temporary or contract workers limit or stop overtime not hire any new employees

None of these alternatives may be possible and the size of the business will have a real impact on what mitigating actions can be taken However, the employer must demonstrate that there is genuine need for redundancies to be made. This would have to be because:  the employer's business, or part of the business, has ceased to operate; or  the employer's business has moved to a different place; or  the business's need for work of a particular type to be done has ceased or diminished

Where there is collective bargaining in place there will be a mechanism for consulting but in a non-unionised workplace it may be sensible to elect employee representatives for the purpose of consultation. Employers must select employees for redundancy in a fair way and not discriminate against any individuals or groups. Employers should use selection criteria to help choose which employees to make redundant and the criteria should be objective and measurable. Employees must not be selected because of their: ¡ ¡ ¡ ¡ ¡

age pregnancy or maternity leave race religion or belief sex; or any of the other protected characteristics.

It is also important that employers do not discriminate. For example, if they use flexible working as a criterion, they could be discriminating against women. They would need to show that flexible working is no longer possible after their business has changed. During the coronavirus pandemic, Employers must not select employees for redundancy just because they are shielding. This could be disability discrimination. If you are at risk of redundancy and want to know more about your rights or if you are an employer who wants to check that you are managing the situation correctly, please phone or email. Adrian Dunn

Emma Grigor Session Supervisor and Administrator Peebles and District Citizens Advice Bureau, Chambers Institution, High Street, Peebles, EH45 8AG 01721 721722 adminuser@peeblescab.casonline.org.uk

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Peebles Silver Band New Beginners Welcome The Silver Band continues to be “closed down” to all group activity for the foreseeable future. Whilst we can still play our instrument at home or in an occasional group as during Beltane Week it is not the same as playing together as a Band. There is just something different in being part of a team and producing something greater than the sum of its parts. Most of us joined the Silver Band at an early age (generally 10 and upwards) and when we learnt to play an instrument, we picked up a number of important life skills and observations along the way, including the following:

Learning to play an instrument doesn’t happen overnight. Many musicians dedicate years to mastering or trying to master their instrument. Every day is a school day. Finding satisfaction in the process of continual learning is enjoyable.

Music takes a lot of time to settle into our brains and our hands but once it “clicks” it is something we can enjoy for the rest of your life. We also learn to count – not least how many beats there are in the bar.

Learning to play an instrument can be frustrating, both physically and mentally. It can be easy to want to give up. However the perseverance we learn through playing music, especially with others, can be incredibly rewarding.

Music isn’t always easy. We may have difficulty interpreting the music, executing a difficult technical passage, or reaching a high note but help is readily at hand from fellow musicians in the Band. The age range and experience within the Band is incredible.

Playing music is a wonderful way to express ourselves creatively. The way we approach and interpret music is unique to us. It helps mould us into individual and creative thinkers.

Music requires us to make many split-second decisions over and over. It forces us to think quickly on your toes. We can, over time, become very quick at reacting to small mistakes, surprises in the music, and the unexpected.

Playing music over and over again to perfect the smallest details is a wonderful way to cultivate patience. It’s tempting to want to gloss over all of the little mistakes, but when we spend time mastering the details, we see the best results.

Music is a fantastic way to communicate with others. Not only do we have to learn to communicate about our music, but we also learn to communicate through music.

Playing within a Band or ensemble is more challenging but infinitely more satisfying and enjoyable than playing on our own.

Being a musician teaches us how to take on many responsibilities, wear several hats, and perform under pressure. We don’t want to let the team down.

Many musicians discover that practicing music can be very therapeutic.

Perhaps you, your children or your grandchildren would like to acquire some of these skills too. If so, please be in touch – email: secretary.pbsb@gmail.com. Use of an instrument and music tuition continue to be provided free of any charge. We look forward to welcoming any and all beginners to the Band Hall whenever it is deemed safe to do so.

17 Personalise your own hamper, buy one already made up or just choose products to buy from our ever expanding range of gifts: • A variety of chocolate products and hampers • Chilli chocolate and sauces • Locally produced soaps and oils • Food foundation products • Dog and cat hampers Gifts and hampers made for any occasion. We’re looking to source locally made products to add to our range. Free delivery in Peebles and nearby areas.

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David Mundell MP Member of Parliament for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale & Tweeddale


Friday 17th July 11am - 4pm

Due to covid-19 restrictions I regret I am unable to hold my usual surgery in Peebles this month. However, I am very pleased to offer telephone and video chat appointments for my virtual surgery. If there are any issues I can help with, please get in touch.

To book a time, please call 01683 222746 or e-mail david@davidmundell.com.



Peebles Portrait Bill Goodburn

Article Steve Dubé, Portait Natalie Martin ________________________________________________________________________________________________ Peebles curlers now have to make do without Bill “Ann was green before me, and that made me green Goodburn and his brush. After 57 years on the ice, Bill too. She and her friends Myrtle Ashmole and Fi officially retired last year and his teammates marked Martinoga were always trying to talk people into being the occasion by appointing him the club’s Life President environmentally conscious. They had a little green group, following on from a much missed Jim Forsyth. “My Peeblesshire Environment Concern, the forerunner of balance went a bit,” says Bill wistfully. Tweed Green, and arranged lectures in the High School.” Loss of balance can be one of the effects of Parkinson’s disease. Bill was diagnosed with the condition three years ago, and after giving up skiing at the age of 78, curling was his last active sport. “It’s a bit passé isn’t it,” said Bill when we suggested that he could feature in a Peebles Portrait. Out of date this sketch might be in relation to Bill’s extremely active past, but there’s no time like the present to tell the story of this Gutterbluid, who traces his ancestry to the early 18th century Manor Valley, and a family of millers and Peebles master bakers.

Environment issues of another kind engaged Bill during seven years as chairman of Scottish Borders Tourist Board in the 1990s, trying to overcome the tendency for the region to be overshadowed by the Highlands and Islands and the cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow. Bill helped the Director, Riddle Graham, to create a network of long distance walks like the Borders Abbeys Way, John Buchan Way, the St Cuthbert’s Way and the Berwickshire Coastal Path. “We were trying to work out an identity for the Borders,” says Bill. “We have a much higher profile now.”

Bill Goodburn doesn’t do things by half. He was born on his mother’s birthday in 1939 in the nursing home on Tweed Green: an unforgettable present. Years later it was love at first sight when he saw a fellow university student from Duns called Ann on an enchanted evening across a crowded room. And later still, smitten by a love of flying, he built a plane in his garage.

Closer to home he helped to establish Peebles Civic Society after the local authority decided to demolish “Buchan’s Corner” as part of a scheme to widen the town’s Cuddy Bridge. There was fierce opposition locally to the loss of a much-loved building closely associated with the Buchan family – the historian and former town clerk Walter, and his sibling novelists John and Anna (O. Douglas). The campaigners persuaded the council to retain part of the building – although it lost its iconic tower – and then set up the new society to protect the town architectural and cultural heritage. Bill was its first secretary – a task he undertook for 20 years. The society has been campaigning vigorously – but not always successfully – ever since, resisting eyesores and inappropriate planning developments.

“The best thing in my life was meeting up with Ann,” he says. “She was doing geography at Edinburgh University where I was studying law and we kept seeing each other at dances but she was always with someone else. Eventually I worked up the courage to ask her out.” They settled in Peebles and raised a family – Joanna, who was Beltane Queen in 1976, Nicola, 2nd Maid at Beltane in 1979 and Robert. Bill was Neidpath Warden in 1985, but believes he courted unpopularity by focussing on Green issues in his speech on the castle steps. Decades after the first warnings of global climate change, he and Ann remain passionate environmentalists. They were active volunteers in the creation of the landmark restoration project Carrifran Wildwood, bought by public subscription on Millennium Day, 2000. Ann contributed text to the tenth anniversary book, and Bill, who is pictured leaning on a spade, provided black and white landscape drawings.

“The worst thing that has happened is the overdevelopment of Peebles,” says Bill. “I firmly believed that the development of Cardrona with its golf course and leisure spa would create a new tourist attraction and take the pressure off Peebles, but it hasn’t happened.” What has happened is the transformation of Peebles from a mill town. “When I was born, Peebles was still a somewhat parochial border town with a population of 6,000 people mostly employed in the tweed industry with a society that was about to be torn apart and changed forever by the Second World War.”

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22Continued from page 22 The war changed Bill’s life too. His father joined the RAF and towards the end of hostilities, Bill and his mother stayed in the servicemen’s quarters in what became Prestwick Airport. By the time he returned to Peebles he had lost his Borders accent and felt out of place without the “large tackety boots” of his contemporaries. He had to scuffle his way past the bullies but soon got his accent back. After primary school Bill commuted by train to the Edinburgh Academy for a while, but the journeys became too much and he enrolled in the High School. “I left as a Gutterbluid and came back as an Englishman with a typical public school accent,” he says.

would tackle most fields of law with clients from every social stratum, including the poacher who always had the foresight to leave a salmon on the door of the old folks’ home – providing a great plea in mitigation!” He didn’t stop flying though. “Once you get the flying bug it stays with you for life and in the end we decided to build our own aeroplane,” he says. “It was something I always wanted to do. We towed it behind the car and flew it out of Carlisle. It was an extraordinary aircraft, but after two broken propellers, 45 modifications and 60 hours flying, it was time to sell. Later Ann and I had a superb holiday flying a very old Cessna around New Zealand.”

He much preferred the High School and went on to university, where he remembers that lectures in civil law were still delivered in Latin.

Back on land, Bill was secretary of Peebles Abbeyfield Charitable Trust for 20 years, and captain of Peebles Golf Club – “but I didn’t play very much; I didn’t have the time.”

University was also fun; he learned to fly with the University Air Squadron, and thought about joining the RAF. “But I had qualified as a lawyer and was running a court department in a City office with some high profile cases,” he says. “So I had sufficient interest to opt for a career in law, which eventually took me back to my hometown of Peebles. I was to be the last of a generation of general practitioner solicitors who

He has more time on his hands now, and he knows how to spend it. “I enjoy a huge degree of happiness as a family,” he says. He and Ann have eight grandchildren and are lovingly proud of them all. Two swim for Britain and two are members of the French national sailing team. “We are very lucky and we spend a lot of time with them,” he says. The family’s gain is the community’s loss.

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A Very Different Beltane Steve DubÊ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ It was a Beltane festival like none other. There were no discos, sports or parades; no riding the bounds and splashing through rivers, no concerts or horse races. There was no Cornet, no Queen and no other Beltane principals. But the town reacted to the disappointment with a spirited defiance. The High Street was decorated and people put up the traditional red and white bunting on their house fronts, individuals posted their photos of past festivals on social media, there was a virtual pub quiz, a drawing competition for children, and other online events. Pipers piped at their front doors, continuing their contributions to the Thursday evening applause for the NHS. The High Street was almost deserted on the morning of what should have been Beltane Saturday, although outside the Tontine Hotel, Catriona Innes and Glenn Edington were ready to take orders for the traditional Beltane Day Tontine bacon rolls, and three members of the Beltane committee were spotted pondering the might-have-been on the church steps where a group of children in fancy dress, including a Beltane king, entered into the spirit of things and sang the Beltane song. Later, a few decorated lorries loaded with (socially distanced) characters in fancy dress (including a Father Christmas) were spotted doing a tour of the town streets and there was a Beltane-size sociallydistanced queue for ice cream outside a one-way three-stage safety system in Caldwells –Safe Oot as well as Safe In.


Tontine Hotel defies the times with its traditional Beltane bacon rolls


Beltane committee men dreaming on


Lockdown Red Letter Day in the High Street


March Street front gate


Elmbank Print’s shop window


Father Christmas and friends raising a hooray


A surprise appearance from a Beltane king


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Janice Steven Designs for you We have now moved from 60 High Street, Innerleithen and have settled into our new premises. We look forward to seeing you there.

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Peeblesshire Youth Trust News In the recent months of lockdown, Peeblesshire Youth Trust have risen to the challenges posed by Covid19 restrictions. With face to face mentoring and group work off the table we have become more creative in how we engage our young people! It is comforting to appreciate that the whole youth work sector has had to adapt to the same challenges, and we have been able to share ideas through our member networks such as Youth Borders, Youth Scotland and the Scottish Mentoring Network. Our core work consists of volunteers providing one to one mentoring with children aged between 10 and 14. Our mentors have become adept at using a variety of technology and through emails, videocalls and letters have managed to stay in touch with their mentees. Our focus has been firmly on what we can do, instead of what we can’t do, and when you consider things in those terms it is still possible for mentors and mentees to play games, visit museums and share tea and cake, albeit virtually! Our group work has inevitably shifted to online meetings and it has been great to see many of our young people’s smiling faces enjoying a scavenger hunt, some ‘would you

rather?’ and a bit of bingo! Whilst we recognise that this does not replace all the benefits of spending time together in the real world, we are hoping that our young people continue to feel valued and engaged by their mentors and PYT in general. The children we work with are at the heart of everything we do at PYT, so we recognise that supporting our amazing mentors is crucial. With the help of Ken at Untangled Web, we have developed a mentor’s section on our website, where our mentors can connect with each other and share ideas, as well as access our documents and policies. This is a great new resource that will help our volunteers navigate the role, and combined with our online training will ensure that they are equipped to mentor well. Each year we work closely with the schools, often alongside Tweeddale Youth Action, to help support the transition of primary 7 pupils to Peebles High School. This year the transition process has looked very different for the primary 7s, who have not been able to enjoy the usual two day visit to PHS in the summer term. PHS and their Parent Council have

worked hard to provide as much useful information as possible to the P7 pupils and their families, to ease their worries in moving up to the high school. As part of our work to support this, we have created a short film to share amongst families of primary 7 pupils in Tweeddale, sharing top tips and advice about starting high school from some current PHS pupils. Last month we appealed to current students to help us create this movie, by submitting their short clips. We had an amazing response, with some very creative and super helpful tips to share. Thank you very much to all those involved in creating such a great resource to help with transition. You can view our short film at: https://youtu.be/3QNTibU6MI8 We recognise that for children in need of support, our services are more vital than ever and we are determined to continue to adapt to do the best that we can in the coming months, as we see further easing of lockdown restrictions and a gradual move to resume “normality”. We will continue to work closely with the schools upon their return in August, in particular to provide emotional support for local pupils who may find the adjustment back to normal school life quite a challenge in itself. To find out more about the work that we do at Peeblesshire Youth Trust, or if you would be interested in finding out more about volunteering with us, please contact Sarah Keen, Programme Manager, tel 07975 383663, or email ‘info@ peeblesshireyouthtrust.org’.


A look back in time: adopting Harehope Cairn Exploring the Past with Peeblesshire Archaeological Society One of the aims of Peeblesshire Archaeological Society is to promote awareness of the extremely rich archaeological and historic heritage of the region. To this end, the Society has undertaken two main projects on local sites under the auspices what is known as the Adopta-Monument scheme. Run by Archaeology Scotland, this is a nation-wide Community Archaeology scheme that provides volunteer groups with the practical advice and training they need to care and conserve their local heritage. The aim of this national project is to encourage local groups to get involved in hands-on activities to improve the condition, accessibility and interpretation of selected local sites. Following the successful completion of our first conservation and interpretation project at Lyne Kirk (described in Peebles Life, July 2019), our attention turned to the remains of an Early Bronze Age burial cairn at Harehope situated in the Meldon valley between Lyne and Eddleston. The cairn was excavated in the 1970s, but over the years the site had become badly obscured by extensive heather growth and by the spread of selfseeded trees from the surrounding conifer plantation. As the site is located by one of the local Tweed Trails popular with walkers, we felt that it would be an ideal candidate for ‘adoption’. Having obtained Scheduled Monument Consent from Historic Scotland, members of the Archaeology Scotland team, society members and

other interested local volunteers carefully cleared vegetation from the site. These efforts have made a significant difference to the appearance of the cairn, allowing surviving features such as the remains of burial cists and the kerbstones which lined the original edged of the cairn to become visible again. As a result of careful brashing of the surrounding spruce trees, the site is now also less hemmed in by the surrounding plantation. Working with Russell Eggleton of local design company Abound, an attractive interpretation panel was also created to explain the significance of the site and installed in early 2017. The panel explains what was found in the course of the excavations while reconstruction paintings by illustrator David Simon give a flavour of the original appearance and landscape setting of the cairn during the Bronze Age. Occasional work parties are still required to check on the condition of the site and cut back the new growth – maintenance that has

been put on hold so far this year by the Covid-19 lockdown measures, so once these ease fully members of the Society will be meeting to “spruce up” the site again (groan!). Looking further ahead to when the plantation is harvested in a few years’ time, a new planting scheme will be put in place. As part of that process, we hope that it will be possible to open up the view over the valley of the Meldon Burn and across to the White Meldon – at least partly restoring the wider prospect of the valley that our Bronze Age farmers would have had from their ancestral burial place around 4000 years ago. Acknowledgements The Adopt-a-Monument Project at Harehope Cairn was undertaken in collaboration with Archaeology Scotland. It was funded by Historic Scotland (now Historic Environment Scotland). Illustration The interpretive panel at Harehope Cairn, seen here at the time of its installation in 2017 (© PAS).

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Eastgate Friends deliver digital goodies all summer With weekly postings of an array of online entertainment, the Friends of the Eastgate are eager for even more people to subscribe to its YouTube channel to ensure that they never miss a clip. Part of the Eastgate Theatre Open Doors Campaign, the Friends’ #eastgateathome videos are designed to keep the theatre fresh in people’s minds during its temporary closure. Already, the channel has more than 20 films ranging from comedy and satire to original music, short documentary films and longer performances – all created by the array of creative talent found locally. The most recent clips to go live include episode one of a new topical satire written specially for #eastgateathome by Borders duo The Two Moronnies, plus a special screening of a performance by bagpipe maker and tunesmith Julian Goodacre (plus friends), filmed live at the Eastgate in November 2019.

the online fundraising platform JustGiving. “We have already seen a wonderful response to the videos, with viewers from around the world in many cases,” explained Catriona Lyon, Chair of the Friends. Each week’s clips are available to watch individually or in weekly playlists on the Eastgate Friends YouTube channel. Viewers are also invited to check out the Eastgate events page which lists all #eastgateathome clips to date, plus a range of other digital content. See www.eastgatearts.com for more.

The clips are all free to view, although viewers are encouraged, if able, to show their appreciation by donating to the Eastgate Open Doors Campaign via

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Have you heard? We’re turning water into gin (and tonic) Scotland’s newest and largest residential gin school is now open at Peebles Hydro! Come along and have a taste, take a tour or make your own bespoke gin.

Book now at www.1881distillery.com

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Tweeddale Youth Action These cooking sessions will shortly stop for the holidays but we plan to resume at the beginning of September and have lots of ideas up our sleeves, including collaborations with Rural Youth Project and youth organisations across the Scottish Borders. It looks like it will be a while before we open our youth club doors again but we are hoping for some summer happiness and cheer through socially distanced outdoor sessions, walks, outdoor cooking and hopefully a trip or 2 away. It’s hard to predict what guidelines will allow us to do, so please see our website www.tweeddaleyouth.co.uk and Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/TweeddaleYouth/ to keep up to date with opportunities and activities.

During the past few weeks, we have had lots of conversations with our young people and our telephone and online support will continue until we’re able to open our youth club doors again. Days, times and contact numbers are as follows:

Our online quiz by TYA’s own Jeremy Paxman (Aaron) is on Wednesday evenings from 6.30 onwards and there are some amazing prizes up for grabs. As with everything we do, it’s totally free, so drop us a line to get the zoom code and get involved.

Scott Wednesday 11-2pm 07928 811054

Friday afternoon’s cookery and baking session is now distributing bakery and cooking ingredients to over 40 y/p from Peebles to Galashiels and we are now joined every week by more than 20 young people on Zoom.

Kristin Monday and Tuesday 11-2pm 07928 810477 Aaron Monday to Friday 6-9pm 07517 518101 We are interested in hearing from potential volunteers who share our passion for supporting young people through universal youth work. We are currently recruiting for new Trustees and would particularly like to hear from people with financial and legal backgrounds. For more information on who we are and what we do, please visit our website www.tweeddaleyouth.co.uk or e-mail info@tweeddaleyouth.co.uk.

Donations can be made to www.totalgiving.co.uk/donate/tweeddale-youth-action-scio

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Warm Chicken and Nectarine Salad Recipe from Val @thymetodinevb Ingredients serves 4 3tbsp rapeseeds oil 3 chicken breasts 2tsp Cajun spice 1tsp smoked paprika 2 sweet potato, wash and peel 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed 100g cherry tomatoes washed and halved 2 nectarines cut into wedges 4 handfuls mixed salad leaves 4 handfuls rocket 15g parmesan shavings


Dressing 3 tbsp olive oil 1tbsp chopped mint 1tbsp chopped coriander 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar 2tbsp runny honey 1tbsp Juice of a lemon

Add all the dressing ingredients to a large bowl and mix well, make sure the bowl is big enough to hold the whole salad.

Preheat the oven Gas 6 220C Fan 200C Line a 2-casserole dish with parchment paper, cut the fillet from the chicken then cut the rest of the breast into strips the same size, pour 1tbsp of the oil with the smoked paprika and Cajun spice and mix, then coat the chicken and set aside. Take another bowl and place 1tbsp of the oil with the remaining tsp of Cajun spice, salt and pepper and coat the sweet potatoes and pour into your casserole dish. Place the potatoes and the chicken into the oven and roast for 30minutes. Heat a griddle pan, (if you don’t have a griddle pan just grill them, or roast them in the oven with the chicken) Place the asparagus, into a bowl pour the remaining oil and coat well. If your using a griddle pan cook in small batches, the asparagus will only take about 5 minutes.

When everything is cooked place everything into the bowl with the salad leaves at the last minute and coat the salad. Divide into bowls, grate some parmesan shaving over at the last minute.

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T: 01721 723293 M:07547 378598 E: dshjoinery@gmail.com

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Tweeddale Councillors Tatler and Chapman

Councillor Robin Tatler T: 07811 977295

E: robin.tatler@scotborders.gov.uk

Councillor Kris Chapman T: 07811 977279

E: kris.chapman@scotborders.gov.uk

Constituents wishing to contact Councillors Tatler or Chapman can do so by contacting them on the above details. Visit us online at www.peebleslife.com


The Peebles Garden


At last! High summer – the proving point of the whole garden year: an endless supply of fresh vegetables, soft fruits and herbs from the plot with the promise of plenty of apples, pears and plums in another few weeks, and the joy of borders, crowded with flowers and more on the way! Look along the beds and borders now: spot the gaps, disappointing combinations, mad invaders and two-week wonders. All of these can be fixed quite easily. To maintain interest for longer with less effort, plant the spine of the border with long-flowering species, interspersed with shortterm things like oriental poppies, lilies and alliums. Plants that last a short time are best positioned to provide fresh interest some place when early-flowering perennials have finished. For example, some mid-season, butter yellow lilies emerging through a planting of blue geraniums. The middle ranks are the place to establish the rhythm and repetition of your planting; this will increase impact and create cohesion. Remember to use fewer kinds of plants and more of them. Flower shape establishes the repetition too: spires and spikes always attract attention. Try veronica or veronicastrum, persicaria, cimicifuga, digitalis or an upright grass like calamagrostis Karl Foerster. Some good long-season flowers are achilleas, hemerocallis, alstroemeria, aster, lychnis, nepeta, oenethera, osteospermum, penstemon and scabious. Nepeta and osteospermum can also be used for the same reason at the front of the border combined with other good front edge plants like heuchera, potentilla, violas and stachys byzantina. Achilleas have flat-headed flowers in a wide range of hues and delicate, ferny foliage. They increase on dry soil in sunshine but languish in the shade and damp. Hemerocallis accepts varying amounts of light and damp and also has a wide range of flower colours. They have strappy foliage which makes a strong contrast with any other shape of leaf. Clumps should be divided every two or three years to maintain good flowering. Split up bad combinations and re-locate them to better effect. For example, pink and yellow combinations – so much depends on tone: cerise and lime okay, gold and flannel pink, not so much. Peach is another colour that is hard to place; augment it with bronze and copper foliage and deeper shades of plum and burgundy. Avoid planting mauve-blue and turquoise-blue flowers together; they just diminish each other. Only tolerate mad invaders if you really like the plant and you have the time and energy to stay on top of it. For example, persicaria campanulata and lysimachia are excellent plants, but they increase dramatically. Many campanulas spread by underground runners and seed so choose them carefully. Euphorbias can make massive clumps so they may need to be reduced every spring. Plants that gently self-seed can be useful but getting rid of alchemilla between paving stones is hard work! Sheila Drummond

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Community Council A message from Peebles Community Council by Chairman Les Turnbull I hope that everyone has been able to cope during this corona virus crisis and that you will be looking forward to getting back to some form of normality as the lockdown eases. Most, if not all, of you may be thinking that your Community Council has been inactive and suspended since the lockdown began; but that is not, and has not, been the case. Of course our monthly meetings have had to be suspended and our face to face contact with residents of the town has been greatly reduced but we have still been able to get on with things behind the scenes to try and represent the views and concerns of residents. The Community Council has provided support for Covid 19 Mutual Support Group, including the Peebles Resilience Group by channelling money from SBC to these groups to help them with their support functions. We are very fortunate in this town to have a tremendous community spirit which has seen volunteers flock to the cause to help others and they have been organised to ensure that assistance is provided to those who need it. Other aspects of Community Council activity have also continued; our Planning Convener has been keeping a weather

eye on planning applications and making comment where necessary. He has also continued to provide his monthly planning reports to Council members; these summarise planning activity and actions taken or recommended. It is hoped that these reports will shortly be available for viewing on our revamped website. The Community Council has also been engaged with the Police regarding anti-social behaviour around the town, particularly in our parks and open spaces. It is unfortunate that we are again experiencing fairly high levels of such behaviour, with damage being caused and litter being left. Again I would like to remind people that it is really important to report such incidents to the police. I know that many residents take the view that it is not worth trying to report incidents to the police and whilst I understand why they might think that way, unless the police are told about issues, we are not likely to get the response we think we deserve in Peebles. We are contributing to the two police Community Action Teams; they need to be tasked to address problems, unless incidents are reported to police, these teams will be sent to other areas that do report issues. So please report all incidents to the police; and, if

you receive a poor response or no response please let us in the Community Council know. Another area of concern has also been magnified with increased levels of dog dirt being left on pavements and footpaths around the town. The reason for this is unclear. More people are out and about dog walking and the majority do clean up, but why others are not clearing up after their dogs, we do not know. It is unpleasant if you walk in it as well as being a health hazard. So please clean up after your dogs. The Community Council is in the process of obtaining signs which shortly be put up around the town in problem areas. Finally, as our local shops start to reopen, please do what you can to support them and help them to survive. Apart from the devastation of individuals losing their livelihoods, we all need a vibrant town centre full of shops for our own benefit and so that we can continue to attract visitors. Special thanks should go to the army of volunteers who have planted all the flower beds in the town (abiding by Government Regulations); they are lovely.


Enhance Support & Care We are a Peebles company which delivers personalised support services to enhance the lives of adults living in the local area. We are professionally registered to support adults with learning disabilities; physical disabilities; & older people, and provide high quality support within their own home and their community.

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Light at the end of the tunnel Peebles and District Men’s Shed had to close its doors in late March in response to the Covid-19 lockdown requirements just as we were getting going really, but how did we get here, what has been happening since and what plans do we have for reopening? Members may have had to stay at home for the past three months or so, which can’t have been easy for many. This is exactly the opposite of what we set up to do. We recognised that social isolation, particularly amongst older men, was an issue long before this became a household term. Our answer was simple. Find some premises and equip them so that adult men and women who simply wanted a bit of company, or to learn a new skill or practice an old one could do so but in the company of others. Men don’t talk face to face, they work shoulder to shoulder. 130 local men and women have since joined our ranks, and before lockdown we would regularly have around 30 attending sessions on Mondays and Wednesdays. Saturday morning openings were becoming more popular as well. Friendships were being formed. Plans for the future were being made. So, around three years ago and initially armed with some ideas from other Sheds in the Borders and from our National Association, we set about the search for a suitable home. Unfortunately, the sort of premises we needed were as rare as hen’s teeth in Peebles. Blind alleys were explored like a redundant temporary classroom unit for which planning permission was eventually refused after a year long search for a suitable site in Peebles, because identified sites were within the local Conservation Area. Then, the School Brae Bub came along. From the outset, when it seemed like a possibility that the building could be saved as a Community Hub, we worked with Peebles Community Trust and our home was found. However, converting the rooms we now rent from a bar and games room to a social space and wood and metal working spaces does not come cheap. Many applications were completed for funding.

Some successful, some not but as time wore on, we started to find backers. Local firm Holland Sherry understood our vision early on and gave us a donation which allowed us ‘camp out’ in the Drill Hall whilst we started the search for a new home. Scottish Borders Council approved some Community Grant funds. We were successful in the second round of the Localities Bid process. Tesco Bags of Help backed us, individual donations were made and more recently The Robertson Trust have agreed a funding package for the next two years which secures our rental payments going forward. We are aware of some raised eyebrows within the Community about the fact that we agreed to pay rent for our School Brae premises, but this concern is misplaced. We can now afford these payments from a combination of members own donations towards our costs and grants secured, and every penny of the rent we pay goes straight in to improving and running School Brae Hub which benefits everyone. We now have other funds in place to equip our new workshops with new, modern machinery and tools which should have been delivered the week we went into lockdown. We have already improved the power supply and lighting to this area and installed safety improvements and built our own workbenches, one bench using what was previously the carpet bowling frames. We also have funding in place to improve power and lighting in the old downstairs bar which will now be the social heart of our Shed. All fittings have already been removed and we are now busy shifting plumbing around and levelling the floor. Once that is done, we will be putting down floor coverings, redecorating, installing a small kitchen area and purchasing suitable furniture. Last on our list is a refurbishment of the toilet areas, and we are seeking funding for that right now.

Visit us online at www.peebleslife.com

43 Once we are done, we will have raised and spent around £40,000 on this great new facility in Peebles, serving the town and the surrounding community. Re opening is now on our mind. Once larger groups of people can gather indoors, we will look to reintroduce our Monday, Wednesday and Saturday openings. There is lots to be done to finish equipping our workshops and getting the machines working to produce craft items for sale. We will allocate space within our social area for artists and modellers, tidy

up our already refurbished storage area and generally make our Shed fit for the future. A micro grant was recently awarded from National Lottery funding to let us purchase suitable cleaning products and PPE for our reopening. We owe thanks to the efforts of Lorna McCulloch at The Bridge in securing this useful grant. Finally, we were due to have a short play based on our Shed and it’s members performed at The Eastgate Theatre in May. Local playwright Clare Prenton is the author, working with assistance from The Eastgate and from Inspiring Life: Evie Douglas Memorial Fund. Sadly, this became a victim of the current situation as well but the really good news is that work has gone on, the play is written and at the first opportunity the show will go on at The Eastgate. Book early to avoid disappointment. You will find out how a Men’s Shed really ticks, and the importance of Jaffa Cakes! Why not like us on our Facebook page, or visit our new website at peeblesmensshed.co.uk, created for us very kindly by Ken at local firm Untangled Web during lockdown. Or better still, use the Contact Us facility on the website to register an interest in joining, or just pop in when we do reopen. We look forward to welcoming new members and are looking forward to a bright future together.

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Here at Interior Solutions we design, manufacture and fit kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms.

We are very passionate about making your dreams come true so get in touch to book your free consultation survey, cad drawing and quote with no obligations. All our jobs are fully project managed by us and we have all the required trades people available to complete your project. References and photos available from previous clients. Showroom: Open by appointment. REGISTER

Interior Solutions (Peebles) Limited t: 01721 724371 m: 07845 252793 UnitInterior 16, Southpark Workshops Solutions (Peebles ) Limited w: www.ispeebles.co.uk t: 01721 724371 DeanEH45 Park, 9ED Peebles 07845 252793 Peebles e: m: interiorsolutionspeebles@outlook.com EH45 8DD w: www.interiorsolutionspeebles.co.uk

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Fitness advice from Lesley Mitchell THE NEW NORMAL

How many times have you heard this phrase being used over the past few months? This is something we are all going to have to adapt to as we move through the different stages of this pandemic. I know some people seem to have taken it in their stride and others who have become completely overwhelmed. Personally I think one answer to preparing ourselves is to keep up to date with information from reliable sources and not get bogged down with all the scaremongering that is going on. We are all in this together and can help each other to prepare for the months ahead too, not just physically but mentally. I have just finished a Zoom chat with a few other instructors about how we plan to welcome back class participants to our studio sessions when we are allowed to safely do so. If we plan the steps, reviewing as we go the easier it is to deal with. I thought if I shared some of our first steps you could perhaps relate them to your own life and also see what I am up to as well.

1) How are we going to keep studios clean, come up with a cleaning programme 2) Everything as contact-less i.e. bring own mats etc. not handling cash where possible 3) Perhaps teach on-line classes more especially when dealing with vulnerable clients 4) Toilets, how to clean in between clients 5) Health questionnaires for clients, on line more hygienic 6) Wearing of masks, some people find they feel safer with one on, others don’t want to wear 7) Spacing, at the moment the recommended distance between people is 2m but this may change 8) Ventilation of studio These are only a few of the aspects we were looking at but we were preparing ourselves and giving it time to sink in. I know the above points are relevant to a studio but it may be useful to you start to think about the different situations you may encounter as well. Stay safe Lesley :)

Lesley Mitchell -Pilates,Personal Training, Fitness, Yoga T-07952 156458

Tweeddale Councillors Bell and Anderson

Councillor Stuart Bell Tel. 07767 003598 stuart.bell@scotborders.gov.uk

Councillor Heather Anderson Tel. 07811 977280 heather.anderson@scotborders.gov.uk

Constituents wishing to contact Councillors Bell or Anderson can do so by contacting them on the above details.


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For information contact Linda

on 01896 831011 or linda@peebleslife.com


A fantastic way to learn how to grow your own food!

On sale at: Harbro Whitie’s Book Shop Peebles Library Changeworks and The Fat Batard

YOU CAN GROW is an offshoot of YOU CAN COOK youcangrow.org.uk

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Accommodate Rural


D & M Williams Scrap Metal Uplifts


Mr Maintenance




D C Landscapes


mth tax limited



David Mundell MP


Ozkan's Grill


AT Blinds


DDL Care Services


P Grandison Funeral Director

Atticus Interior Design


Decorative Solutions Ltd


Peebles Carpets

Armac Vet Group

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Barony Castle


Designs for You


Peebles Dry Cleaning & Laundry Services


Blackwood & Smith


DSH Joinery


Peebles Handyman




Dustbusters of Penicuik


Peebles Hydro Gin


Border Canopy Company


Enhance Support & Care


Peebles Joiner


Gifts and Hampers by Design


Peeblesshire Windows




Borders Chiropractic


Glengo Outdoor Clothing


RA Walter Plumbing & Heating Engineer


Buglass Gas


Harrisons Ford Centre


Red Circle Locksmith


Impact Landscapes


Sheila Whitie Hypnotherapy


Interior Solutions


Shire Chimney Services


Cameron Carpet Company


Castle Warehouse Northgate


CCM Laboratories


James Fleming Plastering & Roughcasting


Story of Love


Central Gas Heating Engineer


John Montgomery Upholstery


Tweed Financial Services


Colin Wilson IT ServicesÂ


K & R Painting and Decorating


Tweed-line Taxis

Councillor Tatler & Chapman


Lothian & Borders Environmental


Tweeddale Kitchens


Councillors Bell & Anderson


Luxury Lawns


Whities Books and Crafts


Cullen Kilshaw


Maglin Domestic Appliance Repair


You Can Cook



Useful Numbers - all in one place Police to report a crime


BT Faultline

0800 800151

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“Thank you BMAS for your care,

efficiency and skill in creating such a wonderful new bathroom!” Rated ‘Excellent’ on

We offer finance options to spread the cost of your bathroom.



Transform your bathroom and your life in as little as 4 days Trust the Edinburgh bathing mobility specialist to meticulously design a safe bathroom tailored to your individual needs. BMAS only fit the highest quality of products and always use their own tradespeople for your peace of mind.

0131 668 2227 7a Grange Road, Edinburgh EH9 1UH www.bathingmobility.co.uk Visit Our Showroom Dobbies Garden Centre Open 10am-5pm 7 days a week Please mention Peebles Life when responding to adverts

Now at

Profile for Linda Cormack

Peebles Life July 2020  

Community magazine for Peebles.

Peebles Life July 2020  

Community magazine for Peebles.


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