The Selangor Scotsman The Newsletter of the Selangor St. Andrewâ€™s Society June 2013
New SocietyWebsite Address www.ssas.com.my
Committee Chieftain Chuck Jefferey email@example.com Vice-Chieftain & Hon. Secretary Alan Bernard firstname.lastname@example.org Hon Treasurer Hector Ingram email@example.com Committee Members Bernie Williams Donna Millar Elaine Cameron Jeff Ross Kathleen Whyte Lee Smalley Lorna Mair Pauline Geddes Yvanka Jefferey Resident Past-Chieftains Ali King (2012) Johan Murison (2011) Richard Thompson (2010) Paul Henderson (2009) Alistair Paterson (2008) Hector Ingram (2007) John Thomson (2006) Patrick Russell (1997 & 2004) Tristan Russell (1989) Stewart Forbes (1987) Newsletter Editor firstname.lastname@example.org Membership Secretary email@example.com Charities Kathleen Whyte Dance Convenor Richard Thompson
Due to the delay in getting this newsletter out for a variety of reasons, I will attempt to cover a lot of ground with this short article. Let me say first that I am honored to have been elected to the role of Chieftain of this uniquely; venerable and vibrant society of Scots here in Kuala Lumpur. I look forward to continuing the great progress that has been made by the outgoing Chieftain, Ali King and her committee members, many of whom who are still active on this year’s committee. The committee has worked tirelessly these last few years maintaining our traditional events in addition to promoting new ones. While the committee retains most of the members who made last year’s social events so successful, I am very happy to welcome a number of new members who have joined the committee to help develop events and further increase the variety of our social events and levels of fun! Details of our committee are posted here. If you were present at the recent New Members night and Summer Concert then you’ve had a taste of what is to come. I would like to thank the Concert committee for their great effort; WELL DONE. I’m sure you will all agree that the concert was very entertaining and that Paul and Kirstie in their guises as Rod and Annie did a fantastic job of entertaining us to say nothing of the fantastically talented band and our hilarious MC, Craig Hill. The Pink Kilt appeal was a hoot in addition to raising some 33,000 ringgit for the charity fund for Prostate and Breast Cancer with MAKNA – National Cancer Council – a meaning to life. We plan to hold a number of social events, including a Welcome Back Nicht at KLGCC and a Whisky Tasting evening at my home, details of which will be circulated as soon as they have been confirmed. We would be delighted to hear from members with any suggestions for social events, large or small. My contact details are also here. The annual St. Andrew’s Ball will be held on the 23rdth of November at the Hilton Doubletree. The St. Andrew’s Ball is always a great do where we celebrate our national day with fine food and drink, traditional reels and some less traditional, but no less Scottish, dancing for the more energetic amongst us. We have booked Rusty Nail to entertain us again by popular demand. I look forward to seeing you at our events throughout the year. Aye Yours and Aye Ready ACW (Chuck) Jeffery
Alice Smith School Governor Yvanka Jefferey Web-Master John Thomson
The Selangor Scotsman is sponsored by Asian Tigers Transpo Movers (M) Sdn Bhd Lot 6, Jalan Ragum 15/17, Seksyen 15 4000 Shah Alam, Selangor Darul Eshan Tel: +603 5565 2200 Fax: +603 5513 3788 www.asiantigers-malaysia.com
The 2013-2014 Committee Chieftain
Chuck Jefferey Vice-Chieftain and Hon. Secretary
Alice Smith School Trustee Governor
New Society Website Address www.ssas.com.my The Committee has recently changed the hosting arrangements for the Society Website and has obtained a new domain name which alters the website address to: www.ssas.com.my The previous web-hosting service was provided by Webhost, a Hong Kong company, and this service was due for renewal in July 2013. Action was taken to terminate that web-hosting service and to utilise the services of Shinjiru, a Malaysian based web-hosting service. The reasons for the change were: The web-hosting service offered by Webhost did not included provisions for e-mails and alternative arrangements for Society e-mail addresses had already been established on a site hosted by Shinjiru where we now have e-mail address under the domain of @ssas.com.my. The web-hosting package provided by Webhost had certain limitations and could not utilise the full capabilities of Wordpress, which is the software being used to run the Society website. Wordpress is extremely powerful web-site design and management software but relies upon various plugins to enhance functionality. Some of these plugins would not function on the Webhost server. It was also thought to be easier to deal with a local web-hosting company if there are any difficulties associated with the operation of the website.
The website looks very much the same as before, since action was taken to migrate all the existing files across to the new web-hosting platform provided by Shinjiru. The only recent design changes were to change the NEWSLETTER page to NEWS & FEATURES as that now allows the Society to post individual reports and newsworthy information in addition to the Newsletter. We will continue to post information on all our forthcoming events as soon as the details are known and we will also continue to operate an on-line ticketing function for our major events. So please update respective bookmarks on your browsers for the new society website address, but don’t worry that you may have missed out on anything as we have arranged a re-direct pointer from the old domain of www.ssas-online.com to the new website address of www.ssas.com.my In effect if anyone visits the old website address, they will be seamlessly re-directed to the new Society website. Finally, the Society would like to pay tribute to Zoe Shuttleworth who recently stood down as the Society web-master. Zoe designed and created the website, then maintained it for more than two years. Her exceptional computer skills coupled with outstanding artistic flair resulted in the Society having a most professional looking website which is also aesthetically pleasing.
The previous NEWSLETTER page is now re-titled as NEWS & FEATURES
Inter-Societies Golf Champions 2013
Congratulations to the St. Andrew’s Society Golf Team for winning the Inter Societies Golf Championship which was held at Tasik Putri on Sunday 9th, June 2013. It is pleasing to note that the Inter-Society Golf Trophy is once again in its rightful place; just a tad north of Hadrian’s Wall.
Forthcoming Events Date
28th Sep 2013
Welcome Back Nicht
To be decided
19th Oct 2013
Great British Ball
Shangri-La Hotel, KL
23rd Nov 2013
St. Andrew’s Night
Doubletree Hilton, KL
25th Jan 2014
Burns’ Supper 2014
Inter-Continental Hotel, KL
Great British Ball 2013 Tickets are now on sale for the Great British Ball 2013 and details of the event are on the flyer overleaf. This event is always popular and has been sold out on a number of occasions well in advance of the event. To avoid disappointment please book your tickets/tables early. Further details of the event and an on-line ticket application form can be found at:
The May Concert - “What a Blast!”
The May Concert - “Awesome Night Out!”
Charity Report by Kathleen Whyte
Kathleen Whyte with Bawi and Emily from Harvest Centre –Dignity for Children Just a few lines to let you all know that this year we have shared out a massive RM70k in charity donations! We are not a charitable organisation but we were able to share out this fabulous amount due to the success of our events in recent times which gave us this surplus of funds. We thought you may like to know a bit more about the worthy causes which have received support from Selangor St. Andrew’s Society! We have always supported a number of charities over the years and regular recipients have been The Erskine Home for old soldiers in Scotland, Mobiliti Malaysia who support the disabled and the SPCA. We have also supported many other charitable organisations including the Aged European Fund and various orphanages. This year we are still supporting the above charities along with the following very worthy causes: Persatuan Rumah Kids Home - which is an orphanage in Klang; Openhands Home in Kajang – which is a small home for girls from abused backgrounds; Pusat Penjafaan Kanak Kanak Tenencat Akal Selangor – which is a home for disabled children and adults in Klang; Special Children of Ampang – home for disabled children; Pure Lotus Hospis – this is being established in Petaling Jaya in addition to the Hospis that they currently have in Penang. We are assisting them by buying medical equipment; House of Hope – Penang - they aim to break the cycle of poverty by meeting their critical needs and giving hope for a better future through feeding, clothing, educational programs, temporary financial
relief and medical assistance. http://www.houseofhope.org.my/ Stepping Stones - orphanage in Seputeh - I joined one of our members Monica Maclean and a wonderful team of ladies on a recent trip to The Science Centre Petrosans in KLCC on a day out we sponsored for the children and there is an article on this day out in the newsletter; Home of Peace - home for children - specifically girls from neglected, abused backgrounds to give shelter , hope for the future. ACR Chin Refugees in Pudu – the Society sponsored a trip to Zoo Negara in June. Further details and photos over-leaf Tamna Federation/Myanmar Women – they are a group of ladies who support their families by making crafts, homemade soaps and body lotions and we supported them by buying them materials. Harvest Centre – Dignity for Children – this is an initiative where we are supporting by sponsoring two teenagers to attend senior school. The two students we sponsored are pictured above and their names are Emily and Bawi. This project was established by another of our wonderful members, Carole Findlay who during her volunteering role at the Pudu school saw the need for further education for children who couldn’t afford it. This is a wonderful initiative giving children hope for a better education and future and we hope to support more children in years to come; and Relay for Life Charity run - this is a yearly charity run in aid of Breast Cancer research and we sponsored Elaine Cameron’s family in Aberdeen to take part in this very worthwhile event.
Getting up-close to some of the species on display under the watchful eye of the tour guide. So thank you again to everyone for supporting the Selangor St. Andrewâ€™s Society here in KL by attending our events. We hope that as well as having lots of enjoyable evenings of Scottish entertainment at our events and meeting up with old friends and new, that you can now see some of the worthwhile causes that we have supported this year and in previous years for so many needy causes both here and in Scotland. Charity Zoo Trip On 4th June 2013, Lorna Mair and Kathleen Whyte went along on a trip to Zoo Negara with the children and staff of the ACR Chin Refugee School in Pudu. The children had been doing a school project on animals, so the trip was very exciting for them. They loved the Special Tour Guides who explained every detail of each species that they saw and the children were especially impressed at seeing an elephant and a giraffe up close. They were also able to handle certain species under the watchful eye of the Tour Guides. It was also a wonderful experience for Lorna and Kathleen who were delighted to see such happy wee faces, clearly enjoying it all. This trip was funded by a charity donation that the Society made to the ACR Chin Refugee School and another trip is planned for later this year. Some of the children wrote thank-you notes. These are not only delightful but also show how much the children enjoyed the trip. The letters are shown over-leaf.
Lorna, Kathleen and the kids meet an Elephant up close! Awesome!
Special Tour Guides in action briefing all the children
The children meet with a Giraffe
Burns’ Supper 2013
The skirl of the pipes resonated throughout the InterContinental Hotel in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday evening of 2nd February 2013. The sound welcomed all the guests to the Annual Burns’ Supper. The event was informal with kilt casual and smart casual being the order of the day. The foyer and the ballroom were decorated with tartans, saltires and lion rampants, while clan banners adorned the walls around the ballroom. In keeping with the best of traditions, it should be noted that earlier in the day, most of the work to decorate the room was done by the ladies of the committee, while the men stood around and offered suitable advice and guidance!! The event was staged in the Grand Ballroom which offers an ideal venue for a larger Burns’ Supper. This event is increasing in popularity, and the venue not only offers excellent dining facilities but also has a large dance floor for Scottish Country Dancing. The response to the event was excellent with 400+ participants which is the highest number ever to attend this perennial event. The evening opened with the MC, Bernie Williams, welcoming members and guests and then the Selkirk Grace was delivered by Resident Past-Chieftain, John Thomson. The night was well and truly underway.
One of the highlights of a Burns Supper is the Haggis Ceremony and this year was no exception, but with a departure from the usual format. The haggis was piped in by the pipers from the St. John’s Alumni Pipe Band with an entourage of ladies as haggis and whisky bearers. The bearers were Lorna Mair (haggis), Pauline Geddes (whisky) and Lisa Ingram (whisky) which made the Haggis Ceremony an all ladies affair. However, all resident past-chieftains lined up behind the ceremonial table giving an imposing, and somewhat daunting, presence to the proceedings. Chieftain, Ali King, gave an impassioned address and duly “stabbed” the haggis with more than a little flourish and gusto, while reciting the lines: “Trenching your gushing entrails bright like ony ditch”. She did however, hesitate over a couple of the words during the Address to the Haggis and at one point looked directly at John Thomson for inspiration, then immediately remembered the next line; “Poor devil! see him ower his trash, As feckless as a wither'd rash!” We can perhaps forgive this small lapse on the part of the Chieftain, who was able to continue and finish the
address. Ali has something of a dread when it comes to public speaking and despite much practise to be word perfect, our Chieftain found added meaning to the words of Robert Burns:
delivered these two elements in a most appealing and delightful way where they all inter-acted with each other, albeit that such a delivery was a complete departure from the standard format. True to tradition though, the Lassies got the last word!
“The best-laid schemes of mice and men Gang aft a-gley, An lea’e us nought but grief and pain For promised joy” The haggis was obtained locally and prepared by Johan Kern, the chef at the Berjaya Catering Centre. Many people commented that the haggis was delicious and by all accounts most people had second helpings. We have it on good authority that on the Chieftain’s table there wasn’t so much as a single morsel of haggis left as the haggis platter was well and truly wiped clean! While the main course was being served, the company was entertained to a performance of Pipes and Drums by the St. John’s Alumni Pipe Band. This local band gave an excellent performance and the sound filled the banquet room. They continue to improve and expand upon their repertoire with some excellent drumming routines. They were sporting some of the pipe-banners which had been supplied by the Society.
Comedienne Janey Godley After a short break, the main act of the evening was introduced and comedienne Janey Godley took the stage. She is a regular 5-star performer at the Edinburgh Fringe and one of the most prolific and extraordinary stand-up comediennes working in the UK. She entertained the company with her repartee of anecdotes and somewhat risqué jokes which had the company rocking in their seats with laughter. Again in the words of Robert Burns: “The night drave on wi' sangs And ay the ale was growing better.” A St. John’s Piper sporting one of the Society Pipe-Banners In recent years the Society has engaged the services of a professional comedian to entertain at the Burns’ Supper, where the comedian would incorporate the elements of the key-note address to the Immortal Memory of Robert Burns. As it is an unenviable task to follow a professional comedian, the Society switched the order of the speeches and consequently the Toast to the Lassies and the subsequent reply were delivered before the performance of the comedienne. Chuck Jefferey, Yvanka Jeffery, Elaine Cameron and Garry Dick
The evening continued with Scottish Country dancing. The Dance Caller did a fantastic job of calling the dances and keeping everyone right. Not an easy task as the night progressed and everyone became a little mellow. However, the dance floor was full right up to the end when the whole company came together to sing Auld Lang Syne. Indeed the dancing continued to contemporary music even during the take-down period! Bernie Williams, the MC for the evening did an excellent job of holding everything together with apparent calmness and flashes of sparkling humour. Allin-all a most successful evening and many people left feeling that they wanted more.
Self-Publishing a Book in KL Language The language of the text on the bond certificates relating to external loans is at least partially in a western language. From an international perspective this allows collectors, who cannot read Chinese characters, a small insight into events that took place in China and provides a documentary record of those events. It also allows collectors access to detailed information about the financial arrangements surrounding the external loan and subsequent bond issue. By contrast, the bond certificates from internal loans were usually written in Chinese characters and it is difficult for a foreigner to translate and understand the text. Historical Appeal
My son-in-law is an avid collector of old China Bonds and two years ago he gave me a present of three such bonds, which sparked my interest in also becoming a collector. The name for the hobby is Scripophily which entails the study and collection of stock or bond certificates. Both myself and my son-in-law specialise in collecting bearer bond certificates from external loans that were negotiated between the Chinese Government and foreign financial institutions or international trading companies. These loans all fall within a specific period in Chinese history from 1860 to 1949 and some of the loans and subsequent bond issues were inextricably linked to certain momentous events in Chinaâ€™s recent history. The various China bond certificates from external loans are of particular interest to collectors for several reasons as follows:
China bonds have an inherent historical appeal as some of the loans were related to specific historical incidents or political situations which occurred in China. A prime example would be the Hukuang Railway Loan of 1911 whereby the Imperial Chinese Government authorised a loan of ÂŁ10,000,000 from a consortium of foreign financial institutions. The contentious feature of that loan was, not only that it deprived local business interests of participating in a lucrative development project, but also there were provisions in the loan for extra-territorial rights. In essence that meant the substitution of the court procedures of a creditor country for the business practices of the debtor country. As such it allowed foreigners to enjoy sovereign jurisdiction over parts of Chinese territory. To add insult to injury the Chinese Imperial Government increased taxes on the local people to be able to meet the repayment schedules of the loan. Some historians believe that it was the various issues relating to the Hukuang Railway Loan that provided the spark to ignite the revolutionary movement in 1911 and which subsequently led to the end of 3,000 years of dynastic rule.
Hukuang Railway Bond issued in 1911 by Banque de L’Indo Chine and for Denomination £20
Aesthetic Appeal Many China bonds are attractive documents which are aesthetically pleasing and indeed there is a substantial market in selling these bonds as display items. Compared to bond issues of other countries, China bonds are often larger and more ornate, which, when coupled with quality printing, makes them almost “works of art”.
discovered that world-wide there was only one book of note on the subject. That book, entitled China’s Foreign Debt was written by Wilhelm Kuhlmann and self-published in 1983.
Collection Range There were a limited number of Chinese external loans and bond issues. It is therefore attractive to collectors in the sense that they can perceive the possibility of obtaining a meaningfully complete collection. Although some loans had bonds of a single denomination, most external loans issued bonds of different denominations so that collectors have the possibility to form sets of bonds relating to specific external loans. Redemption Hope Some investors hope that China bonds relating to loans which are in default by the Chinese Government, might at some time in the future be redeemed with re-payment of principal and with substantial compensation for lost interest. In the unlikely event that the current Chinese Government did decide to honour the outstanding debts from the previous Chinese administrations during the early part of the last century, then the unredeemed bearer bonds may have substantial value. Trading Value As trading items, China bonds have an inherent value to collectors worldwide. Recent auction prices show an increased interest from buyers and this has generated an upward swing in the relative value of the bonds as collectors’ items. This trend may be attributable to one or more of the following reasons. Firstly an increased general interest in all things related to China; secondly, greater domestic Chinese wealth and interest in Chinese history and thirdly interest from speculators. Reference Material As my interest in collecting these bonds grew, I needed some reference material and
Although it contained a wealth of information about China Bonds, most of the information was poorly presented and nearly all the images were in grey-scale which did not do justice to wonderful colours and artwork of the bond certificates. I also found that some of the information was inaccurate, particularly some of the data tables on the number of bonds issued and their respective serial numbers. As a consequence, I started to compile my own set of notes for each China Bond that I acquired and as the volume of these notes grew, I realised I had sufficient written material to compile a reference book whereby I could also include high resolution images in full colour. From that embryo idea it took me the best part of a year to complete the manuscript and I actually did all the page-layouts myself using desktop publishing software called PagePlus 6 from Serif.com.
Hukuang Railway Bond issued in 1911 by Duetsch Asiatiche Bank and for Denomination ÂŁ100
Many of the documents are quite large and bigger than A3 size and initially I tried photographing them, but eventually, I bought a large scanner and produced all my own images. I obtained an ISBN number from the National Library in Jalan Tun Razak, then self published the book which is entitled Historic Foreign Bonds of China. I got the printer, DHO Enterprises, who usually does the Societyâ€™s programmes and newsletters to print and bind the book at very reasonable cost. Then came the hard part - how to market the book and sell the book to collectors? Creating and On-Line Shop The idea of selling the book and perhaps trading in China Bonds sparked another idea which was to create a website and on-line shop. Again I did all that myself using software called Visual Site Designer and
Shopping Cart Creator Pro from the software company CoffeeCup.com. If you are interested to visit the website you can find it at: www.chinahistoricbonds.com It was quite a thrill to post the book to the website and receive the first order and most rewarding to create something from a blank page and to be able to sell that product internationally. I also posted some copies for auction on eBay which did two things. Firstly, it acted like promotional advertising as the book was listed for substantial periods on eBay until the auction closed and secondly, it also generated sales. I wonâ€™t win a Booker Prize for this effort, but the sales have been better than anticipated and there was a very positive book review published in magazine of the International Bond and Shares Society during December 2012. All-in-all it was a fun thing to do. John M. Thomson
Locomotive vignette from the Hukuang Railway Bonds issued in 1911
Canton-Kowloon Railway Bond issued in 1907 by HSBC in denomination of ÂŁ100
Review of the Battlefield Band’s latest Album Room Enough for All Of particular interest to the expatriate community is Track No. 3 entitled “Farewell to Indiana”. The write-up on the sleeve of the album comments: “This song was written by Andy Mitchell who was inspired by the journey of his friends who had left Ullapool in the north west Highlands to settle in Indiana. They set up home and happily brought up a family in that far off land. Life was good but in the end the call of home was too great and they returned to Scotland, not as disappointed emigrants but having had a great experience. Not a song of failure but of fulfilment.”
Many of us in the Society will remember the outstanding performances of the Battlefield Band when they played at our first May Concert in 2006. To many members of the Society they were an unknown quantity, but they lifted the roof off the Hilton Ballroom and gave everyone who attended the event a night to remember. Indeed the initial response was so positive that the Society invited them for a repeat performance in 2007. They once again did not disappoint and Phillipa Morrison was moved to pen one of her delightful poems: The Battlefield Band----what a marvelous crew. We tapped whilst we’ve clapped and listened to you. Your roots may be dubious from Ireland to L.A! But Scottish music is what you can play. Billy Elliot said “Electricity thrives” Within his body when he dances and jives. But the hairs stand on end when I listen to you You take me back to my roots through and through. From the fiddle, the pipes, the bodhran and more. Give us just one last dance to remember you for! The latest Battlefield Band Album, entitled ‘room enough for all’ was released in 8th April 2013. It once again features the talents of Mike Katz on bagpipes and whistles, Alisdair White on the fiddle, Ewen Henderson on fiddle, pipes and vocalist, and Sean O’Donnell on guitar and vocalist. There are, however, some guest artistes featured on the album with Mike Whellans playing guitar and harmonica. There are also bonus tracks featuring the talents of Alison Kinnaird, the renowned Scottish harpist, and also Christine Primrose, one of the great Gaelic singers.
Track No. 11 is also significant and worthy of note as it is a new composition by Mike Kats and Ewen Henderson. It is entitled “Tynes in Overtime” and is actually named for Lawrence Tynes, a Scots-born place kicker, who played with the New York Giants. He is famous in the annals of American Football as the only player ever to kick the winning overtime field goal in two separate playoffs. His mother’s family came from Greenock and moved to the US when Lawrence was 10 years old. He is apparently an ardent supporter of Glasgow Celtic football team. But then nobody is perfect! Another interesting track is a set of three reels which includes “The Eight Men of Moidart”. This piece of music first appeared in a collection of tunes compiled by Edinburgh music seller Robert Bremner in 1757. The most popular explanation of the title refers to the seven companions of Prince Charles Edward Stuart who arrived with him in the northwest of Scotland at Moidart in 1745. Thus began the 2nd Jacobite rebellion, which ended in failure at the Battle of Culloden in 1746. There is also a more fanciful story which states that seven fishermen who were collecting bait on the beach at Moidart, were so delighted at the Prince’s arrival that they composed a set dance on the spot; as they were a man short they used a shovel as the eighth man. Overall this album is stunning with a rich blend of traditional and contemporary Celtic music. It keeps the Battlefield Band up there with the very best musicians of this genre. For anyone interested to buy the album, it is available at the Temple Records Secure Online Shopping Site: www.templerecords.co.uk John M. Thomson