Probus Club News & Events

Welcome to your club news page.

Have you heard about the PROBUS WORLDWIDE RALLY in ATHLONE, IRELAND this MAY 15th-17th?
Well, check out for latest up to date information!
We have just added 
  • Registration Form
  • List of Hotels and prices
  • Booking form for Golfers
  • Full Three Day Programme - Mayor's Reception, Concert, Rally Lunch, Outings, Golf -
  • Plus an Outing for Guests to 6th century Clonmacnois
  • ...and back by Viking Ship to Athlone on Lough Ree and River Shannon.
  • and visit to 800 year old ATHLONE CASTLE at the gateway to Connacht,
  • and visit our newly refurbished Luan Art Gallery on the banks of the River Shannon
  • and the new Athletics Stadium befitting Athlone's title of 'European Town of Sport'.
Perhaps you, or some of your members are toying with the idea of being in this part of the world at that time. Here is a golden opportunity to meet members of the extended Probus family.
On our blogspot, check out the videos about Athlone, the Midlands and the rest of Ireland in the section 'Heart of Ireland'. Each year an All-Ireland Rally is held somewhere on our island, which attracts over 400 delegates and their guests. As this is The Year of the Gathering, we extend our invitation beyond our shores to the big wide world. Be assured there will be a very warm welcome for you in Athlone!
Well, here's hoping we may meet up in the Irish Midlands in mid May! 
Did you know a non-stop bus from Dublin Airport will get you to Athlone via the M6 Motorway in 90 minutes?
Any publicity you can give our Rally will be much appreciated.

Basington Probus Club Welcomes Mayor

The Mayor of Basingstoke & Deane, Cllr Martin Biermann, was the guest of honour at the first lunch at the start of the 34th season of the Probus Club of Basingstoke. Newly elected President, Gerry Anslow, welcomed the Mayor on behalf of the committee and members and considered that it was a good thing for the senior citizen of the borough to meet members of the club who had been executives in the locality prior to their retirement.
Mayor of Basingstoke & Deane, Cllr Martin Biermann (left) is welcomed by Probus Club of Basingstoke President Gerry Anslow (right) and committee, at the first lunch of the 34 th season of the club.
Mr Anslow, who has lived in Kempshott since 1976 and was a Principal Scientific Officer at AWE Aldermaston, says of his appointment “I am following in the footsteps of some illustrious membersof Basingstoke professions, commerce and industry who were the movers and shakers of yesteryear in the local business community.”
He went on “ Cllr Biermann would be welcomed as a member should he decide to apply when he retires from business.”
Probus clubs were originally founded in 1965 to provide fellowship for retired members of Rotary but today the criteria for membership has been considerably widened with the result that there are now over 4000 clubs worldwide and in the UK there are in excess of 180,000 members.
Gerry continued “Despite the high levels of involvement throughout the country, here in Basingstoke we still need to recruit members to bring in new thinking and yet provide continuity with our ethos of providing a social outlet for like minded men. With the present trend for retiring at a higher age than in the past we are keen to find a small number of new entrants who are needed to keep the club making progress.”
The Probus Club meets twice in most months for lunch at Sandford Springs golf club near Kingsclere and an evening meeting which is held at Christ Church Chineham at which there is a guest speaker. They also have a social calendar that involves members’ wives, with outside trips, special lunches and a Christmas dinner.
Potential members can contact their secretary Bryan Harvey on 321473 or [email protected]
There is a separate Ladies’ Probus club who can be contacted on 780907.

Crimestoppers Under the Microscope at Probus Club
At their evening meeting at the end of last month the Probus Club of Basingstoke had as their guest speaker Simon Wright who is in his twenty fourth year as a serving officer in the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Constabulary. These days his main role is that of coordinator of Crimestoppers & Most Wanted in Hampshire and across other local authorities in the south including the Channel Isles.
While most have heard of Crimestoppers and have seen their prominent phone number 0800 555 111 not many people know that it is a charity funded in the main by large companies and is operated by a group of volunteers. The main activity of this team is to take confidential phone calls from the public who want to report any matter that they consider will be of interest to the police; all done with complete anonymity.
The Most Wanted section is based in the Crimestoppers web site where photographs or E-fits of people that are of interest to the police are displayed. This information is updated daily and it is encouraging to see the increasing success of this operation where, in our county  alone, they will receive six phone calls and make two arrests on an average day.
As well as a lunch on the second Tuesday of most months and the speaker meeting in the evening of the fourth Thursday the Probus Club of Basingstoke have social events and trips that involve members’ wives. If you are a retired professional or business executive and would like to know more then contact the Secretary, Bryan Harvey either by email [email protected] or telephone 01256 321473 for an informal discussion.


Hola from a small Island in the Mediterranean! Would you believe there is a PROBUS Club here namely, PROBUS CLUB OF MENORCA. We may be, compared to many, a comparatively young club, but we have quietly been very active. October 2011 we celebrated our 10th anniversary.

We are somewhat different from most PROBUS clubs, in that we are registered for CHARITY/ FUND RAISING and this year to date we have collected and donated the princely sum of 47,100€  by organising charity walks, Triathlons, Harbour Cruises, BBQ´s , Race Nights etc; etc; We have with the exception of 2 occasions, donated all these funds to local charities here on the Island namely, Cruz Roja ( Red Cross )

this organisation runs totally on funds raised, they provide meals on wheels, equipment for those injured or ill, Ambulance Service ( fully equipped ), Transport to and from Hospital, shopping, Doctors Surgery etc; for those in need, Translation Service for those who have difficulty with the Spanish language, they are also responsible for and providing beach patrol/rescue throughout the Island. Other charities are AECC ( cancer care ), Alzheimer´s Assoc, Club Vidalba ( children with learning difficulties ), Club Trapuco ( adult learning difficulties ), ASPINOB who provide support to children who suffer from cancer and their parents. One charity we are particularly proud to be involved with has been set up by our own member DON HYATT is, REST AND RECOVERY an organisation that provides a prepaid holiday here on the Island ( flights, accommodation, transport, and meals ) for those soldiers who, after service in Afghanistan  suffered life threatening/ changing injuries together with their wives/partners. 
One situation we did help with off the Island ( through a member BOB WICKENS ) was a family ( who were fishermen) in THAILAND who lost everything in the BIG SUNAMI. We purchased a fishing boat and equipped it so they could make a living. Now there is a boat plying the coast, fishing off THAILAND named MENORCA PROBUS. The second charity we gave a donation to was the organisation set up to help people who suffered in the MADRID RAILWAY bombing.
At our AGM last October we decided to have a rest year ahead with just normal meetings, fellowship, speakers etc; as most of our members have spent all their working lives doing charity works through ROUND TABLE, ROTARY, LIONS, EX TABLERS/41CLUBS etc; now with PROBUS, we need a rest.
We also have a LADIES PROBUS with an even bigger membership than the Mens, who collect at their meetings through raffles etc; and very generously donate to their recognised local charities.
Any member visiting our Island and wish to join us at our meetings will be made most welcome. The Men meet the first Wednesday of each month and the ladies meet on the 2nd Thursday. Please contact Roy Sutherland on 0034 971 359 444 or Jill Sutherland on the same number.
Best Wishes
Roy Sutherland
Secretary/Vice President.     

The Harrogate Army Apprentice - Our Story
New book published by Probus member Fred Carslake.

 'The story I am trying to get across is not just, about my writing a book about my army days. ‘This Book’ embraces the lives of a group of waif’s and strays who joined the army as 15 year olds many with no qualifications at all. It not only charts their journey through the Army Apprentice School at Harrogate but carries on to show how far they went up the ranks in the regular army, it also reflects on their success stories in Civvy Street. It is an excellent combination of stories submitted by the lads who actually served there and shows the impact it had on their future lives.

Part One
tells the story of what we actually did and got up to while we were there, the Army Apprentice School at Harrogate turned raw young boys many from broken homes into very skilled tradesmen. The skills instilled in them during their apprenticeships made the modern army what it is today.
Part Two
covers the time we left Harrogate and served in the regular army showing how far up the military ladder we went, it also shows a copy of our Roll of Honour and Honours write-ups. Returning to Civvy Street and the relevance that our army lives had on our civilian careers is also covered in this section.
The success stories of these ex Harrogate apprentices are what this book is all about, it will certainly give a great deal of inspiration to every one reading it, whatever their age group ..... there have been a lot of stories both in the press and on TV about ex servicemen living on the streets and having a rough time, this book could go a long way in showing them the way forward.
The book can be obtained from me Fred Carslake at 29 Coopers Drive, Yate, Bristol BS37 7XZ for £15 plus £2 P&P.
Alternatively, you can email me at [email protected]
Finally, If there is anyone out there who knows me from my army days I would love to hear from you.

East Kilbride Ladies Day Lunch 2012
Ken Lawton 

The tradition of the East Kilbride Probus Club is to treat their ladies to a lunch as near Valentines Day each year as a way of saying thanks for ‘putting up’ with them.  This, of course, is a particular year for the club as they are celebrating its 20th year since it inception.  

Top table front row seated  left to right:
John  (Secretary ) & Olive Mitchell , Mrs Eileen Montgomery , Provost Russell Clearie (South lanrkshire council), Andy Montgomery (EK Probus President), Mr Ken Lawton (Vice president EK Probus )and Mrs Isabel Lawton

The committee felt that it would be fitting to invite the Provost of South Lanarkshire,   Russell Clearie MBE, to address the lunch.  Over his nine years in office, he has been the champion of the older individual.  This can be seen in his support for Seniors Together which debates and raises issues concerning the older person in South Lanarkshire.

He did say, that when he was elected as Provost his keynote to his tenure would be, “To re-introduce youth to the older people and older people to youth in South Lanarkshire.”  This reflected his long work with the YMCA in Cambuslang and his years of dedication in the trade Union movement.

He went on to praise the roll of the volunteer in South Lanarkshire as he saw them as the backbone of what the Council were trying to do, particularly in these straiten times and indeed recognised several well kent faces at the lunch.  Another of his mantras in office was getting his priorities right such as, that his family came first followed by his staff and the support of the Councillors and the some 16,000 employees .  He said, “That team work was important at each of these levels and the ability to work with the volunteer sector.”  He posed the question, “What would it be like in our society without the volunteers’ contribution and support?” 

He went on to say, That he had enjoyed his term of Provost, and councillor, and had found great pride in the job.  All the time he had tried to be an honest person (not many of these in politics he added) and speak from the heart.”

He concluded by again thanking the EK Probus Club for the invite to speak to them and reminded his audience, “That behind every good man was an even better woman.”  With that he asked the men to be upstanding and drink a toast to their wives and partners.

There then was a brief, but pertinent reply, by the  EK Probus President’s wife, Mrs Eileen Montogomery who, “Thanked the Club for the lunch and  wished them well in the ensuing years.”

The President, Andy Montgomery wound up the lunch by thanking Provost  Clearie for accepting the club’s invitation and that his enthusiasm for his position had shone through especially in his support of the voluntary organisations such as Probus.

Report on All-Ireland Probus Rally 2011 in Mallow, Co. Cork

In the Spring of 2010 one of our members suggested that Mallow Probus Club should make a bid to host the All-Ireland Probus Rally 2011.   This suggestion received quite a dubious reaction from the other twelve club members.   However, they were persuaded to explore the possibility.  To this end, Paul Hillis, District Probus Liaison Officer, Southern Region, was duly contacted and a feasibility study of the proposed venues was undertaken.   Shortly afterwards Paul made a trip to Mallow to assess the venues.   
On the 20th April 2010 we received a letter from Paul confirming acceptance of Mallow Probus Club’s application to host the All-Ireland Prubus Rally 2011 and also suggesting that representatives from the club attend the 2010 Rally in Ballymena, Co. Antrim to formally deliver the invitation to delegates.
From that point on it was a matter of rolling up our sleeves and getting down to serious work. 
An organising committee was formed comprising of members from Mallow Probus Club and Mallow Ladies Probus Club.   The first meeting was held on the 15th July 2010 at which the following sub-committees were formed:   Finance;   Hospitality;   Accommodation, Logistics & Tour ;   Brochure & Publicity;  Correspondence & Registration.  A Minutes Secretary was also appointed.   Duties were defined for each sub-committee and it was decided that meetings would initially be held fortnightly but at a later stage weekly meetings would be required.   Paul Hillis agreed to attend meetings if and when required.
We were blessed with members who worked unstintingly and applied their various skills and talents to the task of organising the Rally.  Locally we liaised with Rotary,  Mallow Town Council,  Mallow Chamber of Commerce and the Tourist Office.  At a wider level we were greatly assisted by Failte Ireland, Cork Convention Bureau and Avondhu Development Partnership.
We were fortunate to have two very suitable venues at our disposal, the Conference Centre at Cork Racecourse Mallow and a state-of -the art Mallow G.A.A. Complex .
On-going meetings were held with the management of Cork Racecourse Mallow and the G.A.A. Complex Mallow to iron out dates, menus and entertainment.    Potential sponsors were approached, quotations were sought for printing Rally brochure, stationary, nametags etc.,  possible accommodation was identified, a guest Speaker was considered, among many other tasks.
Critical dates for the completion of certain tasks were identified  -  letter to Club Secretaries announcing the Rally,  posting of registration Forms,  Press Release and a Reception for Sponsors.
The most serious difficulties proved to be, the lack of local accommodation necessitating imaginative transport arrangements,  the wide range of quotations for printing and agreeing on a suitable tour for accompanying persons.
We were fortunate that one of our members had the necessary I.T. skills to redesign the registration form to suit our particular needs and later a spreadsheet to record details of registration.
We were overwhelmed by the support, both practical and financial, we received from everyone with whom we came in contact during our preparations.   Finally, with finance in place, menus and entertainment organised, transport arrangements set up, a guest speaker secured, a suitable tour finalised and guests invited, the week of the Rally dawned and the actual days of the event rapidly approached.
Members did little else but Probus business that week.   Final checks were made, welcome packs were assembled and flowers were arranged, with the help of the local Flower Club, to decorate venues.    
On Thursday 26th May delegates were met and transported to their accommodation and later to a reception hosted by the Mayor of Mallow at the G.A.A. Complex Mallow.   This reception was preceded by entertainment from local musicians, dancers and choir and afterwards an informal sing-song continued into the late hours.  The tone was set, the delegates appeared to be enjoying themselves and we began to relax a little.  
The day of the Rally was exceptionally busy.  Delegates had to register, guests had to be welcomed, accompanying persons were dispatched on their tour, capably looked after by members of the Ladies Probus.   The business of the Rally was conducted in an efficient and professional manner.   The delegates were welcomed by Mr Charles Mortell Chairman of the Organising Committee. 
We were honoured to have as our guest speaker Mr Tony O’ Dalaigh.  Mr O’ Dalaigh’s address was followed by lunch.   We were equally privileged in our after-lunch speakers   -   Mr Barney Callaghan, District Governor Elect Rotary,  Mr Edwin Dunlop, who presented the Edwin Dunlop Attendance Cup,  Mr Wilson Ferguson who accepted a certificate marking the fortieth year of Bangor Probus Club, Mary Sinnamon District Liaison Officer Northern Region and Paul Hillis District Liaison Officer Southern Region.  The business of the Rally was then concluded.   Some delegates chose to remain on for an evening Race Meeting which included the All-Ireland Probus Rally 2011 Handicap Hurdle for which the committee presented a trophy to the winning owner.
We were delighted at the number of complimentary emails, cards and letters we received from delegates expressing how much they enjoyed the Rally, all of which made the whole experience worthwhile.   Indeed, it has been a very enriching experience for all of us.  We are deeply indebted to Mallow Town Council, Mallow Chamber of Commerce,  Rotary,  Failte Ireland,  Cork Convention Bureau,  Avondhu Development Partnership and all our generous Sponsors without whom it would not have been possible for us to host the 2011 Rally.  In conclusion, we wish Stormont Ladies and Strandtown Probus Clubs every success in hosting the 2012 Rally in Belfast.

March 2011 - Keynsham & Saltford PC

Here's a challenge - can anybody match or beat James Herbert,  of Keynsham and Saltford Probus Club, who celebrated his 100th birthday in January?

He was the oldest to join the club  - because he carried on in his career as a stockbroker until his 89th birthday ...

London-born James  moved home to the West Country in 1974 but stayed in the capital to conduct his business from Monday to Friday each week.  Upon his eventual retirement he moved from Bath to Keynsham and became a Probus member in 2001. When age eventually caught up with him and prevented him from attending meetings regularly he was given associate membership.

On his centenary, James received a special card signed by all members who had attended the December meeting and an invitation was extended to him to be a guest at the club's January meeting.   He made his entrance to standing applause.  He was able to stay for only a short time but he accepted a bottle of whisky from president Edmund Prideaux  (seen with him in photo) and ceremoniously cut a cake decorated with the Probus badge, his name and the number 100.  Nobody could have expected him to blow out 100 candles so the cake had ten, each representing a decade of his life.

James was born  eight months after the start of King George V's realm.  He was to see three other monarchs and 19 different prime ministers.

He entered the world of finance as an office boy straight from school but by the time he was 21 he had become an under-manager and nine years later he was a member of London Stock Exchange.

22nd March, 2011


Scottish Screen Archives.

Yet another trip down memory lane with the help of Mrs. Janet McBain from The Scottish Screen Archives.  She was appointed first curator of the archives at their set up in 1976 and indeed her visit to the East Kilbride Probus was very much her swan song as  after 35 years and countless presentations she was about to retire.  So much so, the club presented her with a cake to commemorate the occasion.

She started by telling us that she had been told that PROBUS stood for Poor Old Bu***rs Unfit For Service which raised a laugh among the audience. She went on to explain that she started at the Archives on what was a Job Creation Scheme for six months and hey ho, 35years later she was leaving the Archives in good heart with a busy film rescue department, a burgeoning library with films that had been collected and rescued to reflect Scotland and its everyday life and events. The library only had a relatively few feature length films which were mainly sponsored by companies or institutions.  The subject matters were   factual from both professional and amateur film makers showing life in Scotland through the years.

Films began in 1890 and were to be seen in travelling shows and fairs in primitive ‘cinematograph   booths’ from about 1896 and one of the earliest which she showed was of the Gordon Highlanders c1899 leaving Aberdeen marching down Union Street to the harbour for the boat to go to the Boer war in South Africa.

Next was some footage of Sir Thomas Lipton (of Tea fame) arriving at William Denny’s shipyard in Dumbarton for the launch of Shamrock III, one of five yachts that Lipton built to compete for the Americas Cup yachting trophy. He never managed to win the cup bit the New Yorkers finally gave him a cup for ‘The World’s Cheeriest Loser’.

Film  in cinema was of course an important medium to  show the news (No Telly then) which was often locally filmed such as  Green’s Scottish Moving Pictures News who lasted until the early twenties when Pathe News and Gaumont News became  leaders.  One of Greens news item shown in greens cinema chain was the visit of the ‘Julian the Tank Bank’ in 1917 to Aberdeen.  This was a First World War tank which visited cities all over the UK to raise money for the war.   It had money slots all over the tank in which to make your deposit and in its two week tour of Scotland it raised two million pounds.

Several films of Paisley were shown including ‘Paisley Children’s Happy Hunting Ground’ of 1929. It was commissioned by Walter Hinks, manager of the New Alexander Picture House showing queue for the first talking picture at the cinema. Sadly, in the queue were children who were to perish in the Glen Cinema disaster a few months later in December 1929 –

77 children perished.

On the humorous side, there was snatch of the 1926 ‘Inspection Paisley’s Fire brigade’ featuring Fire master Girdwood demonstrating his skills at the top of an 85 foot extending ladder. Obviously no health and safety in those days by virtue of the stunts he was seen to carry out. It had been sponsored by a local foam manufacturer and was seen in cinemas throughout the town with a piano accompaniment.

Amateur film forms an important part of the Archives using 9.5mm, 8mm and 16mm and an example of such was a 1930 film about Bennie’s Railplane during its trial run at Milngavie.  (He was born in Auldhouse in 1891) A prototype ran over a 130-yard (120 m) lineand was meant to straddle the conventional rail line below for goods and his Railplane above for fast passenger transport. It was never developed commercially in the UK but his ideas were taken up in Canada and Germany forming the basis of today’s monorail.

Another example was ‘Da Makkin o’ a Keshie’ (1932) which showed a Shetland crofter making a basket to carry home peats.

Next seen was an example of Sponsored films such as ‘World of Steel’ (Colvilles Ltd.), shown at the 1938 British Empire exhibition in Bellahouston Park in Glasgow during one of the wettest summers on record. 

Next was a quick look at a Co-op Training film, typical of its time, called the ‘Silent Salesman’ which talked of Marketing, advertising and the use of posters, newspaper adverts and flyers to aid the sale of goods when the customer had reached the counter.  All this was post war, about 1950/60, and these and other buzz words were creeping into marketing speak and it was when marketing was separated from advertising in meaning and action.

Finally The club members were treated to a 1977 film of their own town;    ‘East Kilbride – Going To Town.’ In this, East Kilbride was shown in its fresh, best light as being one of the most successful of all the new towns.  By 1955 the 3,000th new house was built and by 1974 there were 20,000 houses of which 12,000 were the planned overspill from Glasgow and was now the sixth largest town in the UK.  The Town centre was in its infancy in 1959 when the then Prime Minister, Harold Macmillan, declared the first phase open.

Mrs McBain concluded this fascinating glimpse into the Archives which house some 32,000 films of which 290 were on the web site,  by inviting anybody along to their Hillington. Glasgow HQ.

The vote of thanks was given by Bill Rodger who not only expressed that it had been a tremendous presentation but also wished her well in her retirement.

The next meeting will be on the 6th April 2011 at 2.00 for 2.30pm in The Old Parish Church hall in Glebe Street, East Kilbride, and that this will be the A.G.M., with the new season commencing in October 2011

Members were reminded of the forthcoming visit to Callendar House near Falkirk on the 30th March, 2011       

Press Release: September 18th 2010



The East Kilbride Probus Club starts its new season on Wednesday
 6th October, 2010 at 2.30pm with a talk from Dr. Robert Sharp about The Mountain Rescue in Scotland.
They meet in the Old Parish Church hall in Glebe Street in the village of East Kilbride and would welcome any new members. It is a national organisation although it is autonomous within each club’s own membership which is made up of retired  professional and businessmen from the community.   They have a full programme all the way through to April 2011 consisting of talks every first and third Wednesday of each month, and a variety of visits lined up to such as a distillery, Hampden Park and Callendar House near Falkirk, not forgetting their Ladies Day Lunch near 2011’sValentine’s Day (Who said romance was dead?)
They will listen to such talks about Broadcasting, Oscars and Hammerstein, Gaudi and The Household Cavalry and much more. This promises to be another year full of interest – something for everyone and the President Mr. Donald Finlayson extends a welcome to all.  
If you would like more information, then contact the secretary Mr. John Mitchell on: 01355 231952.

Updated Monday 2nd March


One of several recent excellent speakers at the Bakewell and District Probus Club was Club member Ken Watson. Ken elaborated on one of his pet subjects, “Castles”.

During the past couple of months the Club has been entertained by club member Dr George Yule and current Practice Manager Nick Derbyshire, talking about “fifty years of medicine in Bakewell.

Fellow Club member Roger Truscott spoke about, In a time of austerity”. The Usual Bakewell Probus Christmas Extravaganza was fronted by Robert Cumming, with assistance from Ken Watson, Chairman Keith Johnston, John Davies, Brian Barry and the Multi talented Ron Meads. At the end of the January meeting,

The Speaker was Peter Downey from the Woodland Trust, an excellent expose of a cprobus club bakewell and districtharity boasting a membership of 200,000 and owning 1,000 woods.

The most recent talk at the end of February was by club member Len Woollen who described his experiences of “Working and Volunteering in the Criminal Justice System”.

Other matters recently raised included the forthcoming eagerly awaited visit to the early warning RAF station at Fylingdales on the North Yorkshire Moors.

 Photograph shows: Left to Right, Keith Johnston, Chairman, Speaker Ken Watson and Club secretary John Barkley.

A party of 28 members, wives and friends will be staying overnight at the excellent Saxonville Hotel in Whitby and undertaking a three hour visit to the RAF station during their stay. (One member has already stated that whatever else happens, he is having Fish & Chips at the Magpie!!)

Bakewell & District Probus Club meet on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays each month, currently at Calver Village Hall at 10.30am.

Further Information: Derek Harrison on 01629 812247

 probus treetops hospiceUpdated 24th February 2010

“Probus Members Set to Work!”

Probus members stopped by at Treetops Hospice to present a cheque for £150.

They might have regretted their visit when they were promptly set to work on the building site by Treetops Hospice Ripple Appeal team, Kate and Alex!

The club, made up of over 50 retired professionals and businessmen, has held various fund raising events and collections in order to raise money for the new day care centre which will double the Hospice’s capacity.

Peter Dawson OBE, Club Secretary, said “We are delighted to continue our support for this wonderful place which makes an enormous difference to so many lives”.

The Ripple Appeal team Kate Shaw and Alex Ward (pictured here), expressed their appreciation by saying  “We are so grateful for the ongoing support of The Church Wilne Probus Club. Every pound that they raise for us counts and it’s great to be able to invite them along to see how their generous donations are being spent”.

Anyone wishing to get involved in future fund-raising is asked to call Kate or Alex on 0115 9394551, or email [email protected]

PRESS RELEASE 19th February, 2010.


The life and works of Sir Edward Elgar.

The East Kilbride Probus Club met on Wednesday, 17th February, 2010 and the guest speaker was Mr. Paul Bassett ably assisted by his wife Sharron. Paul is the President of the Scottish Branch of The Elgar Society and President of the Dunfermline Speakers Club.

Elgar tends to be known for such pieces as Pomp and Circumstance Marches, Nimrod and The Enigma Variations. However Mr Basset went on to illustrate the wide variety of music composed by who is arguably the greatest composer England has ever known. He was responsible for Chamber music, Oratorios, Choral, Marches, film, music halls songs and much more. He illustrated and punctuated his talk with musical sound bites of some well known pieces, like pomp and circumstance and also less well knows compositions from his repertoire. As a man Elgar, was very patriotic, which comes out in his music?

Reflecting the mood of his time – very King and Country. Although born in 1857 his music slow to catch on started to come to the fore towards the end of the 19th Century, e.g. The Imperial march in 1897 and the Enigmas variations in 1898. He found it difficult to get an orchestra to play his music and it was really the Austro-German conductor, Hans Richter, who first played his work in Germany and then over in London. That was when Elgar became fixed in people’s minds and was appreciated. In later years Richter became a whole-hearted admirer of Sir Edward Elgar.

He was married to Alice (ne Roberts) and had one daughter, Carrice. Alice’s family who were upper class cut her off financially for marrying a ‘lower middle class piano tuner and musician’, (he was an accomplished bassoonist, violinist organist and pianist). However this as much as her fervent belief in her husband’s talent was the power house behind Elgar both practically and spiritually.

They moved house many times from Worcestershire, Hereford and London but always seeming to orientate back to his beloved Malvern Hills where he found solitude and inspiration for his music. In his later years he received many accolades such as his Knighthood in 1904, the order of Merit 1911 and many more.

His cannon of work is immense and spectacular and fortunately electric recording came along in time to capture many of his pieces. Indeed he was always at the forefront of technology and in November 1931, Elgar was filmed by Pathé for a newsreel depicting a recording session of Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 at the opening of the famous Abbey Road Studios in London, later made famous by the Beatles.

He died from inoperable cancer on 23 February 1934 (Aged 76) and was buried, at St. Wulstan‘s Church in Little Malvern, next to his wife Alice. A great composer who captured the spirit and the feel of England and whose music plays on today to remind us of his genius.

A vote of thanks was given by Mr.W.Mair who said that the club had heard a first class and moving story of such a prolific and well appreciated composer. Indeed as a viola player himself, he had often played the music in an orchestral setting.

The next meeting of The E.K Probus will be held as usual in The Old Parish Church hall in Glebe Street, at 2.00 for 2.30pm on Wednesday 3rd March, 2010, when there will be a talk by Mr. Robin Watson on ‘The Covenanters.’

Ken Lawton.

For more info contact 01355 227 018

PRESS RELEASE 10th February, 2010.

2010 Ladies day lunch.

The tradition of the East Kilbride Probus Club is to treat their ladies to a lunch as near Valentines Day each year as a way of saying thanks for ‘putting up’ with them. The invited speaker at the lunch this year was Mr. Willie McDougall who is a retired police officer –Chief Superintendent of the traffic police. Since his retirement, he was with the National Scottish football team for some 12 years serving under such luminaries as Craig Brown, Bertie Vogt, and Walter Smith. Currently he is Chief Security Adviser to the SFA and in the past also to FIFA. In his talk, he extolled the importance of woman and with tongue in cheek he said that, “there are three types of woman – the beautiful, the intellectual and then the vast majority.” Having got away with that, he redeemed himself by going on to extol the virtues of ‘our ladies’. He concluded by wishing the Probus Club and their ladies continued success.