Harburn Village Hall - News Archive


sandra gliding
sandra gliding
I was delighted when Eric gave me a voucher for a glider flight for my birthday in March. Little did I realise how long it would take to actually experience the flight. Due to the wet weather I had my flight cancelled three times.

At last on Sunday 14th September I was finally airborne. I travelled to the Scottish Gliding Centre in Fife accompanied by family, friends and dogs. After being fitted with a parachute and instructions to use it I was finally allowed in the glider. We were towed up to 2500 feet and the left to soar like a bird for twenty minutes. The feeling was awesome.

I declined the pilot’s offer to take control, preferring to enjoy the beautiful view and take lots of photographs. Coming back down to earth was rather bumpy and getting back out of the glider a bit difficult. Thank goodness I did not have to do it at 2500 feet. Eric, David, Stuart and Isobel are all keen to have a go next season.
I would certainly recommend the experience. Would I do it again? Maybe, but I think I would like to try a helicopter flight next. Thanks to Allan Douglas who suggested the idea to Eric.

Sandra Dobson

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It all started with those Home and Leisure television programmes that tell you to de-clutter your home, showing images of houses where not a toy, not a newspaper, not a toaster is in sight – just infinite stretches of clean, shiny surface. Although at our house most of our clutter not in daily use is in the all-too-convenient attic, there really was a lot of boxed-up stuff up there which had already been expensively relocated between several previous homes. There was also a guilty stack of unread Christmas presents ‘tidied up’ in the wardrobe. It seemed a good time to have a clear-out, and so the idea of a sale came about because it’s an awkward walk to get to the charity shop in Livingston, and the Village Hall always needs more money.
car boot car boot
car boot car boot

Finding a suitable date was a challenge. It couldn’t conflict with the Litter Walk or Rural events. In the end the date was chosen to fit in with a visit from my Australian aunt, who is an expert at these things.
car boot car boot
car boot

We had a full house of bookings for both tables in the Hall and car boot spots. There were a couple of late withdrawals but this was compensated for by several others who materialised on the day. The car boot sale was, for safety, located in the woodland car park opposite the Hall. The sun shone and the setting was idyllic until a thunderstorm stopped play towards 1pm, but by then the flow of customers had dried up. Inside the Hall Ray and Joanna dispensed hot drinks and biscuits.

In all we made £175 for Hall funds but this was mostly from booking fees. To start with there was a steady flow of customers, but by late morning this had dwindled. I suspect that most of the trade was between stall-holders. I’m not convinced that many of them would feel that the trade done warranted the effort required, although it was a pleasant social occasion and didn’t take a great deal of organisation. Ray and Pete Kew kindly offered to take away a lot of unsold stuff to a charity shop in Bathgate. If this event is to run again, a larger volume of browsing potential purchasers is required, preferably who are neither relatives nor friends of the stallholders. The Summer Fair would be a possibility, but space could be a problem and many of those involved this time already have other roles at that event. Feedback would be welcome from those involved, to find out their views. (I should have prepared an evaluation sheet !)

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Jim M delivered the Address to the Haggis with what our correspondent calls 'formidable attack' and we are again grateful to Calum Power who piped it in with style. Sandra, in a striking outfit, provided an example of how to deliver a witty and clear message to the Immortal Memory. John P and David McD also treated us to amusing and informative speeches with David rivalling Sandra in sartorial elegance.
Informative tit-bits emerged in the speeches: we learnt that there were at least two members of the old Harburn School present on the evening. We were also reminded of the occasion on which a forceful member oif the community, quite a few years after the Harburn station had experienced its last whistle, prevailed on the guard of an evening train to stop at the disused platform. One has visions of Sandra and Eric standing, amazement-struck, as the passenger emerged through the clearing steam of the engine, like some scene from a 40s movie. That the evening was such a success is, once again, very much thanks to the energy, enthusiasm and efficiency of Allan Mcl. He drove us on with relentless good-humour and thus kept the evening focused and pacy. He also provided an amusing tit-bit or two. For instance, amongst his late aunt's documents, he found details of an earlier Burns night on which there was DANCING AFTER THE MEAL. Is this a portent of things to come?

Other entertainment was provided: Terry treated us to his violin playing with John W displaying yet another talent as a percussionist. Marcus fittingly enough sang Burns, but also provided a contrast with a powerful blues number. Tryst whose voices are heard too infrequently, gave us a selection of (mainly) rollicking numbers. As one expects from this group, these were delivered with great panache. A pity they had no time to include one or two of their wonderful reflective pieces. Still, you can hear them on the CD! No, I stand corrected, on the CDs, for the group has just reissued its earlier disc: Across the Bridge. Both this and Companions are now available by contacting Heather Wilkinson (871523) or, indeed by emailing us through the Contact Us page.
Words from various sources.
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