Published: 07/09/2013 13:00 - Updated: 03/09/2013 16:46

Reflections from Ross-shire

88 Years Ago

Friday, 5th September, 1925

TAIN TOWN COUNCIL has agreed that the town should be included in the proposed electricity scheme for Ross-shire.

• Mr John Weir Campbell, student, is occupying the pulpit at Maryburgh Free Church.

• A detachment of the Royal Air Force has arrived at Newton Camp, Evanton, in preparation for the arrival of the main body of men.

• In the final of the Pairs competition on Cromarty Bowling Green, P W Maclean and P Hay defeated D M Junor and J Bain by three shots.

• Conon and Maryburgh Lawn Tennis Club hope next year to construct hard courts, it having been discovered that grass courts are not much use in the climatic conditions experienced in the Highlands.

• Messrs Reith and Anderson, auctioneers, Dingwall, conducted a sale of growing corn at Tomich, Beauly, belonging to Mr William Mackenzie. There was a fair attendance of buyers present. About eight acres of potatoes and oats sold at up to £8 5/- per acre.

• A fete held in the Recreation Ground, Evanton, in aid of the funds of the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides realised over £100. General Sir Walter Ross of Cromarty, who was introduced by Major Hector Munro Ferguson of Assynt, declared the sale open.

• Master Torquil Nicolson, The Manse, Plockton, has been awarded, by written examination, a Bursary by the Highlands and Islands Education Trust. This is a result, which is highly creditable to the skill and zeal of Mr Davidson, headmaster, Plockton HG School, and his excellent staff.

• The War Memorial at Plockton was unveiled by Colonel Mackenzie of Ord, CMG, MVO. Taking part in the service was the Rev Samuel Nicolson, Parish Minister, and the Rev M Macdonald, UF Church. A Lament was played by Mr Kenneth Mackintosh, Craig, Plockton.

• Mr S MacAdam, Dingwall, has began his season of Cinematograph entertainment. On Monday, he was at Dingwall; Tuesday, Alness; and Wednesday, Invergordon. The star film has been “Orphans of the Storm” starring Dorothy and Lillian Gish. The serial is “The Way of Man”.

• The sum of £10 has been forwarded to the Ross Memorial Hospital as a result of a dance promoted by the Misses Millam, Emslie and Maclean, and Messrs Mackenzie, Maclean and Macleod in Contin Hall. Mr W Munro, postman, was MC, and music was played by Miss Murchison, Garve; and Messrs Forbes Wilson, D Mackintosh, Macdonald and Alex Ross (Garve).

 • Over £18 was realised in Ardross Hall at a Fancy Dress Ball in aid of the Ross Memorial Hospital. Winners were: Ladies: Original: 1 Nurse, John Macleay, Ardross Gardens; 2 Toreador, Miss Elsie Phillips, Home Farm. Fancy: 1 Moor, Miss Annie Mackay, Strathrusdale; 2 Columbine, Nurse Murdoch, Dalnavie. Gents: 1 Green Grow the Rashes, Angus Mackay, Strathrusdale; 2 Robinson Crusoe, W Ross, Ardross. Fancy: 1 Cowboy, Ian Macrae, Dingwall; 2 Red Indian, William Macdonald, Dingwall.

44 Years Ago

Friday, 5th September, 1969

OBITUARIES: In London, Ontario, Gordon D Harvey, aged 46 years, husband of Kay (nee Davey), son of the late Thomas Harvey, formerly of Alness, and of Mrs Harvey, 33a Market Street, Macduff. Grace Hendry Mackay, retired hospital matron, 40 Fingal Road, Dingwall. At 5 Lochiel Road, Inverlochy, Fort William, Flora Maclean, wife of the late Alastair Maclean, Roseburn House, Coulhill, Alness. Anne Macdonald, in her 88th year, wife of the late Rev Donald Macleod, FP Church, Shieldaig, Lochcarron, mother of Chrissie, Donald, Malcolm, John and Angus, latterly residing at the Free Church Manse, Killearnan. At Chapelhill, Nigg, Bessie Junor, wife of the late Finlay Marquis. At “Meldrum”, High Street, Alness, Willie Sutherland, husband of Greta. At 2 Livera Street, Evanton, Hugh MacNair, last surviving son of the late Mr and Mrs Kenneth MacNair, in his 96th year. Williamina MacCulloch, wife of the late John William Macleod, Ardmore, Tain.

• Lt Col A S Duncan, Queen’s Own Highlanders (Seaforth and Camerons) has taken over command of the 1st Battalion at Sharjah in the Persian Gulf from Lt Col DR Maclennan. During the Second World War, Brigadier Duncan commanded 2nd Camerons in the Western Desert and at Tobruk. After the war he took command of the 2nd Camerons in Trieste, and later commanded the 1st Camerons in Malaya and the United Kingdom.

• Dr J Dickson Mabon, Minister of State for Scotland, paid a visit to Easter Ross and toured the site of the BA Smelter at Inverbreakie, where about 500 men are employed. Progress on the main buildings, including the four pot-houses, is beyond the foundation stage, and the network of roads, railway siding and pier, which will served the smelter, are in various stages of construction. The labour force is expected to build up to a peak figure of 1,200 by next spring, after which it will tail off as the permanent staff of 500, who will man the smelter, move in.

• Ross County Football Club had mixed fortunes in cup and league matches. In the Highland League Cup competition at Inverness, they lost 4-2 to Caley, but on Saturday at Peterhead, in the Highland League, they were 3-0 winners.

• Four clubs – Dingwall, Cromarty, Fortrose and Tain – were equal on points at the top of the Northern Bowling League Championship, which was decided by a series of plays-off. The decider took place at Dingwall, where Tain won against worthy opponents.

• Fifty years as a preacher of the Gospel in Tain, that is the proud record of Mr Archibald Robertson, Munro Place, of the Free Presbyterian Church.

• Twenty-nine members of the Ross-shire Hillwalkers Club took part in a meet on Ben Eighe. Weather conditions were not at all favourable with a heavy mist along the summit. Only two members of the party completed the traverse of the ridge from the Kinlochewe side to the ruined cottage at the beginning of the path through the Choire Mhic Fearchair.

• Kiltearn Youth Club organised a barbecue on the foreshore of the Cromarty Firth. The function attracted a happy gathering of almost 200 people. Since the club was formed interest in its activities has snowballed and membership has increased considerably. In charge of the group are Mr Jimmy Hoseason and Mr Finlay Munro, who have the support of an enthusiastic committee. In the skilful hands of a local cook, with able assistance from club members, an excellent service of hotdogs was available. Entertainment was provided by the Marlettes, who have taken up residence in Evanton. They were supported by ace accordionist Willie Stevenson.

• Messrs Alexander Hall and Son (Builders) Ltd, Aberdeen, have won a £300,000 contract to build 216 houses in Alness for workers attracted to the area by industrial development at Invergordon.

• An investigation of Ullapool’s potential as a shark-fishing centre, is to be made by leading anglers. If successful the investigation could open up a big field for the Wester Ross Sea-Angling Centre. Shark fishing in Britain has so far been concentrated in the South of England. Local anglers Archie Allan and James Milne will be involved in the investigation.

22 Years Ago

Friday, 5th September, 1991

AROUND a thousand signatures were collected at the Invergordon Highland Gathering and Gymkhana on Saturday, as the campaign to Save the Queen’s Own Highlanders gathers momentum. Petition organisers were very happy at the response, which followed the official launch of the Save the Queen’s Own Highlanders campaign by Major General John Hopkinson, Commander-in-Chief of the Regiment. The target is 250,000 signatures. Organisers are hoping to obtain 40,000 from Ross and Cromarty alone.

• The Ross County Football Club Player of the Year, central defender Scott Lemmon, sustained a double fracture to his right leg in Saturday’s Highland League clash with Cove Rangers at Dingwall. Scott’s determination in maintaining an even balance of fitness should see him battle his way back to fitness in as short a period as possible. On Sunday he made his first faltering steps along the hospital corridor on crutches. In the game itself, Ross County defeated Cove Rangers 2-1. Earlier in the week they qualified for the Tennent’s Highland League Cup final, when they defeated Caley in a semifinal tie.

• In this particular issue of the Ross-shire Journal was a photograph feature of Her Majesty the Queen Mother’s visit to Tain and the opening of the Dornoch Bridge.

• The weekend saw the start of celebrations to mark a major milestone in the history of the Free Church in Ross-shire, and Maryburgh in particular, with the commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Maryburgh Free Church.

• A sale of work in the Perrins Centre, Alness helped raise funds towards an Operation Raleigh Expedition to Guyana in South America by Philip Ross, Windyridge, Woodside of Kincraig, Invergordon. The sum of £452 was raised. Philip is very close to reaching his target of £280 to cover costs.

• An appeal aimed at highlighting the tragic dumping of unwanted pets by irresponsible owners was made by Iona Henderson, who runs Animal Aid at Munlochy, following the discovery of a cat and five kittens on the side of the A9, and a box containing seven puppies at the Munlochy Sanctuary, which is financed out of the pocket of Mrs Henderson, and by donations from caring animal lovers. Finances are stretched to the limit, and Mrs Henderson said that at the moment so many kittens and puppies were being dumped. She was trying to highlight how irresponsible people have been in disposing of unwanted pets. As well as the personal financial sacrifice by Mrs Henderson, friends and family, the sanctuary has survived thanks to kennelling fees from the police and dog wardens.

• An artist from SW Ross has opened an exhibition of her distinctive work at Eden Court Theatre in Inverness. Helen Robertson, who runs a business called Shadows and Light at Inverinate near Kyle, is mounting a display of fifteen paintings until the end of September. She moved to the Highlands eight years ago before gaining a BA Honours Degree in Glass Design in Edinburgh. She completed her studies at the Royal College of Art in London, and then returned to the Highlands to set up her business two years ago. Helen is skilled in the art of glasscraft and creating three- dimensional paintings in glass. Each one is made from three sheets of glass painted with enamels, which are fired into the glass in a kiln. The results are haunting scenes in shadows and light, which Helen says are inspired by the beauty of the Highland landscape.

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