Harburn Village Hall - Contact Us


Welcome to harburnvillagehall.co.uk.please note the change of address.


1. Using the PHONE: The Village Hall has a mobile 'phone number on which messages may be posted.
This number is checked regularly and someone will return your call as promptly as possible.
Contact Us on 0740 121 2194

2.EMAIL click
or text to 0740 121 2194
3. By Car/Sat Nav/Pony, The Village Hall, Harburn, West Calder, EH55 8RF .


Please scroll down or click here for older 2018/19 news




Sunday lst September - Harburn Players are holding the auditions for this year's panto.  

They are always looking for new/old participants.   

Open auditions between 1500-1700 on Sunday. 

Don't want to be on stage? come along as we're after back-stage help as well! All skill levels welcome. Just come along and see what it's all about. 








As a final fundraiser for our village hall before it starts its renovation work, we are holding a Barbecue on Saturday 31st August. There will also be craft stalls and home baking inside the hall, plus fun activities for the children etc. A great afternoon for all the family!















A report on successful and entertaining evenings improving our craft skills. Plus a selection of photos of the event. (Including recent June evening)Please click here

Also a brief report and selection of photos of the well-attended SWRI PARTY.

Please click here



It was quite like old times on Friday 17th Quiz Nite. Smartypants, the once all-conquering, shook off years of underachievement to walk away with the coveted trophy once more.

However, the evening wasn't without its controversy as defeated teams complained of a number of highly questionable irregularities and are demanding an inquiry at the highest level. Men in suits will certainly be involved,writes our Quiz Mole.More will be heard.


A brilliant 2019 Quiz Nite organised by Louise, hosted by Iain and our usual Quizmaster David Dobson.
Name that tune, Picture rounds, general knowledge, politics, towers and even the Chase “what made Bradley laugh” round.
Easy questions, hard questions, even rude questions…perhaps David Dobson’s best ever Quiz!
This year a bottle of Whisky was raffled raising more money for the Hall. The winner, Joe Ross, was not there to pick it up, it was claimed that he sent a text to Iain to say open it, he did and now its gone. We know who the culprits were Joe…
Anyway, back to the Quiz.

Luckily, for the other teams, Bewildered, the winners for the last two years were a man down, everyone had a chance.
Teams who made a great effort but fell short included Dobson’s Choice, Google It, The Wangites, Bewildered, Harburn WRI, Terrys team of Mexican Bandits, Guys team of indecipherables, Crispy Cremes, Heidi’s Heroes, Harburn Players and The Rainbow Unicorns.
There was a tie break for third place between Andrews Angels and Lets Get Quizzical…how many dots are on a set of dominos…Quizzicals were spot on.
Second were “The Team with No Name”, a great effort but fell one point short…and that one point was almost certainly the question on which film featured the first Hollywood toilet flush...the answer was Psycho, which Linda McDonald of the SMARTYPANTS knew…

Yes, the winners were SMARTYPANTS (again), we have lost count of the number times the word SMARTYPANTS has appeared on the trophies, perhaps a question for next year.
An intensive recruitment process was required but after a long period of being at the ankles of despair the SMARTYPANTS have pulled up to a level where their members can cover themselves in glory.    

Words: D*ve - Pics: Heidi


















SWRI 2019
Our May meeting (the last business meeting before the summer break writes Sue) was a lovely summer's evening, our guest speaker was Anne Millard who spoke about, and gave us the opportunity to try a session of Armchair Yoga.
Anne took us through several gentle exercises to stimulate blood movement in hands, arms, shoulders, neck, legs, feet, and toes whilst seated, adding a little brain/memory exercise which gradually sped up.  (Think the playground clapping game).
Anne concluded the session with a short period of relaxation.
A vote of thanks was given on behalf of the members by Sandra Dobson.
Before leaving Anne kindly judged the competitions.


A Healthy Drink  - made by the member
1st:  Claire Thompson 
2nd:  Sandra Dobson
3rd:  Juliet Boulting 

1st:  Beryl Henderson 
2nd:  Sandra Dobson
3rd:  Joanna Pearce.

We also had a sales table, with various items of produce, craft materials and bric a brac, raising funds for 'the rural'.

The guest speakers at our March meeting were Peter Arnold and Andrew Newton, both members of The Edinburgh Society of Model Engineers (ESME).  Andrew gave a very enthusiastic and informative talk about the development of the Almondell Model Engineering Centre, and the society's history, one of the oldest model engineer society in the world , established in 1894.

From 1977 to 2018 ESME were based at Newliston House where they were given use of a basement room for their meetings and their workshop, they were allocated an area of the grounds to lay their track and run their engines, but only on specific days when the family at Newliston House were themselves holding events open to the public.  As part of the power point display, we were shown a short film taken by the 'Landward' TV team, of ESME members and the public enjoying a ride on one of their trains in the grounds of Newliston House.

ESME members attend Gala days and charitable events, taking their portable track and an engine or two to give rides to the public.  They also have a short permanent track at Bo'ness Railway Preservation Society, which is open when the preservation society hold their special Thomas the Tank and Santa days.

In 2013 the members made the decision to look for a suitable site to develop for their own use, and acquired an 11 1/2 acre wooded site with a pond in Drumshoreland Muir, Broxburn.  Following all the necessary  checks: ground surveys; native plants/trees; nesting birds; etc, they were able with the help of local companies and groups, to start felling some trees, preparing the ground and landscaping the area, Almondell Model Engineering Centre was now taking shape.
To date they have laid a sewage system, had mains water installed, dug tunnels and sidings, built a station and platform, laid 3 main track circuits of different gauges, laid a base for a permanent building for multi purpose use, (meeting rooms, a workshop where members can work on their projects).  Andrew explained that every piece they need to build their scaled down versions of actual size engines, needs to be made by the members themselves using the appropriate materials, following scaled down plans of the original engines - be that locomotive, marine or other.  Construction of the building commenced the day of talk.

Future development of the site is ongoing, they plan to make a boating lake by extending the size of the pond, and making a bridge to span it.  The group hope to be able to hold regular open days for people to visit, walk around the grounds and enjoy a ride on one of their miniature locomotives.

For more information regarding their future plans, they have a website,  
www.edinburgh-sme.org.uk. .


Members' train story or poem.
1st Betty Idle
2nd: Juliet Boulting
3rd: Isobel McChesney

Flower of the month
Joint 1st:  Susan Howie and Ray Kew
3rd: Juliet Boulting.



it is with sadness that Harburn SWRI  announce that Honorary Member Joyce Rankine has passed away.  Joyce, although not able to attend many meetings in recent years, had been a very active member in former years, and will be missed by all who knew her.



Harburn SWRI member Sarah Thomson is currently taking part in her Everest Challenge 'Trek to Everest base camp', we wish her well.  Sarah is raising money for Epilepsy Scotland.(see below)

clare camp 1 clare T b
clare Tb


Harburn Rural member Sarah Thomson will shortly be embarking on her 'Everest Challenge', raising money for Epilepsy Scotland.  Sarah leaves for her challenge on 7th March, returning on 24th March.  Sarah will be walking to Everest base camp and has been preparing for this venture for over a year now.  We wish her success.

If you would like to read more about Sarah's challenge, and / or donate to Sarah's very worthwhile cause, please go to JUSTGIVING.COM and search for Sarah's page 'Everest for Epilepsy'.

If you would like to follow Sarah's challenge, you can find her on Instagram @sarahthomson138

The guest speakers at our February meeting were Kirsty Connell ( area manager) and Nicki Hill (store manager at Balerno), who gave a talk about Scotmid, which has branches throughout Central Scotland, The Borders, and extending down as far as the Lakes and Dales of Cumbria, North England.  Over the years the company has grown by taking over small co-operatives to prevent their closure, so as not to deprive the community of its co-operative store.  Scotmid's origins go back as far as St Cuthbert's Co-operative Society, who's first store was opened in Ponton Street, Edinburgh on 4th November 1859.
Kirsty and Nicki spoke about Scotmid's policy of promoting not only fair trade products and their support for 'fair trade' growers, but also the promoting of seasonal produce grown in Scotland.  They brought with them several recipes using seasonal produce, which were handed round the members.  We were then treated yo a taste of 2 of the recipes - Roasted Vegetable Soup, and, Chicken Vegetable Casserole, both recipes using locally sourced ingredients.


An Unusual Utensil
1st: Joanna Pearce;  2nd:  Helen MacDonald;  3rd:  Beryl Henderson.

1st:  Helen MacDonald;  2nd:  Ray Kew;  3rd: Dianna Waddell.


Congratulations to Elizabeth (Betty) Short, Honorary Member of Harburn SWRI, who recently celebrated her 100th Birthday.  Although not able to attend many meetings now due to ill health, Betty likes to keep up with everything that is happening at 'The Rural'.


Harburn 'Rural' member Claire Thompson is the subject of an article in the recent edition of the SWI's monthly magazine 'Women Together'.  Claire's business Gourmet Pet Treats makes pet snacks for dogs, cats and horses from natural ingredients with no added artificial additives or preservatives



SWRI 93rd Birthday Celebration.
Harburn SWRI celebrated its 93rd Birthday on 14th January in the village hall, 22 past and present members were joined by 2 guests from Midlothian Federation, Margaret Mackay, and Penny Towell.  The catering was provided by Thistle Caterers.  Our Birthday cake was made and decorated by member Morag Stott.

swri 19
swri 19

Prior to the meal, following the welcome and introduction of our 2 guests by President Susan Howie, the presentation of the annual trophies took place, Penny Towell kindly agreed to present the trophies to each winner.  we then had the cutting of the cake, Juliet lit the candles, Sandra fanned them out, and Isobel cut the cake in the presence of President Susan Howie.

swri 19
swri 19
swri cake 19

Trophy Winners.
Beth Garnett Silver Salver was presented to Isobel McChesney.
F.O.M. was won by Helen MacDonald.
Rural Paperweight was won by Isobel McChesney.
Points Cup:  1st -  Isobel McChesney;  2nd - Sandra Dobson;  3rd - Juliet Boulting.

Honorary President Anne Rennie said Grace before the 2 course meal was served.

bday 2019

Following the meal, we held a raffle, most people were lucky and received a prize.  Thank you to everyone who donated a raffle prize.  We then had a 'topical' quiz, followed by a game based on TV programmes, similar to charades, but instead of acting the titles to fellow team members, the title was drawn for them to guess (there was much hilarity).  Thanks to Juliet and Beryl for organising the quiz and game.

To close the evening Penny Towell gave a vote of thanks on behalf of herself and Margaret, President Susan Howie wished everyone a safe journey home.

Congratulations to Harburn SWRI member Fay Tuxworth and husband Phil on the recent arrival of twin grandsons Caleb and Isaak, the babies were born prematurely early in December, and were kept in hospital until just after Christmas when they were both allowed to go home.

Craft Evenings.
Craft evenings will resume on Monday 4th February, 7-9pm in Harburn Village Hall.  The craft being taught by Helen will be 'Wet Felting' - bring a protective apron, it will be wet.  The cost of the evening will be £2 for Harburn SWRI members, or £3 for non members, to cover the cost of hiring the hall.  There will also be an extra charge for the Merino wool used.
Dates for 2019
Monday 4th February
Monday 4th March
Monday 1st April
Monday 6th May
Monday 3rd June?  To be confirmed.
Break for Summer
Monday 7th October
Monday 4th November
Monday 2nd December.


For a report on the 2018 CRAFT FAIR and pics of the event, please click here, or on the Craft Fair link above.

Apologies for the late appearance of these  documents: a draft of the constitution and a summary of the questionnaire on the website. I now attach links to the documents....

Results of Questionnaire and Proposed Constitution




Are you new to the areas of Harburn, West Calder, Murieston, Polbeth or Bellsquarry, would you like to meet 'new friends', why not come along to Harburn Village Hall on the second Monday of the month and join us at our monthly meeting.  Meetings are from 7.30 - 9.30pm, with a guest speaker/demonstrator and refreshments, you will be made very welcome.  There is currently an annual membership fee, plus £2 per person per attendance for members.

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