April is always a busy month in the run up to the AGM. The unofficial office bearers meeting was held on 5th April at the residence of the president who provided generous hospitality. Matters of gravity were discussed. Wednesday 10th April, accompanied the president to the Thomas Hope Hospital at Langholm to visit our old friend Alex Pool who has had a hard time if it latterly but glad to say that he is on the mend. Took Alex a bunch of bananas as a change from grapes. The rearranged SSCBA meeting at Gatehouse was held on Saturday 13th April at the Murray Arms but was poorly attended. Business included reports from the RBWF meeting and details of forthcoming events. An excellent lunch followed. The last Excom meeting of the season on Monday 15th April and a nominee for JVP for next year was agreed. A most enjoyable evening at the Hole i’ the Wa’ on 24th April at the Ladies Club Closing Social, as a delegate along with the president. This was a very relaxed affair with entertainment of an eclectic nature and by public demand, found myself in a duet with the president in a well known ditty. Great fun and this was Lesley’s last fling as president of the Ladies Club. Following night, out by luxury minibus to Castle Douglas to the Sulwath Micro Brewery. Very warm welcome from Jim Henderson and an entertaining but informative talk on the story of beer making and the history of Sulwath. Superb supper of lasagne and chips followed accompanied by copious amount of cask ales (lovely). This was George Templeton’s 65th birthday and his retiral from Penman’s after 50 years. Friday 26th, annual Mail Voice Choir concert, this year held at the Easterbrook Hall as there was a mix up with the DG One booking. This was a blessing in disguise as the Easterbrook acoustics are far superior and the seating more comfortable. Fantastic concert where the repertoire included favourites old and new and the guest artistes, a soprano and baritone, were pure magic. PP Bill Welsh is this year’s choir chairman and it was a pleasure to see him in the front row with PP Frank Curran.
Now engaged in preparing the first draft of the secretary’s annual report to the AGM. It’s not easy to avoid pure sycophancy but Ian McIntyre was one of the best and his year will be one to remember for a number of reasons. DS