Notes on all meetings in 2004Go... Back (2003)... Last Six Meetings (most recent first)... Forward (2005)
Lunchtime Meeting on 7th January 2004
|David Dunsmore, Show Manager, Royal Highland Show, Ingliston|
President Ian Copland welcomed 33 members to the first meeting of the New Year which took the form of a frugal lunch. The speaker, introduced by Clark Stewart, was David Dunsmuir, Show Manager at The Royal Highland Show at Ingliston, Edinburgh for the past 6 years.
David explained that the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland is over 200 years old and was originally set up as an education charity. Last year 4,000 school children visited the Show on a free admission basis and were all given education packs to explain how food and farming products are produced. The Show incorporates many interests such as Flowers, Country Life, Livestock, Horses, Food, Machinery and is also the second biggest Motor Show in Scotland. 10 years ago, 70% of the attendants were farmers, but today the general public makes up 70%. The need for the Show Directors is to manage change, to reflect current trends and new areas like the Countryside Area with 1.5 acres of loch and exhibits for smallholders have been introduced. The Show at one time did not have a permanent site and was held at Cupar in 1919 when the gate receipts were £2,500. Last year at Ingliston the gate receipts were £741,000.
Past President Grant McLeish expressed the club's thanks to David for his talk.
Lunchtime Meeting on 14th January 2004
|Rotarian Cliff Strong - on the nature of being|
President Ian Copland welcomed 32 members to the meeting. The speaker was club member Rev. Cliff Strong.
Cliff pointed out that, in the army, the topics of politics and religion are forbidden in conversations in the mess as they lead to fights and disorder, so similarly Rotary is not a platform for them either. In a thought provoking talk Cliff in his own inimitable fashion gave his philosophy on the nature of being, posing such questions as "What is the point and purpose of the Universe?", "Is matter an illusion?" and "Is there another world?" and gave his own thoughts on these matters.
Harry Mellotte thanked Cliff on behalf of those present.
Members were reminded that the 28th February will be a business meeting, but that there is also a joint meeting with Inner Wheel and the Howe of Fife Rotary Club that same evening in the Eden House Hotel, at 6.30pm for 7.30pm. Forthcoming events are a fund-raising quiz night in the Howe of Fife clubrooms on 12th February and the Ladies' Night dance in the St. Andrews Golf Hotel on 20th February.
Lunchtime Meeting on 21st January 2004
|Charlie Todd - Address to the Haggis|
In the absence of President Ian Copland through illness, President-Elect Bill Low welcomed 36 members and one visitor to the Club's annual Burns lunch. The address to the haggis was by honorary member Charlie Todd whose love and knowledge of the Bard's work is well known.
Grace was said by Sandy Mitchell. Following an excellent traditional lunch, Charlie stepped into the breech to cover for the President giving the company a number of recitations linked by insights into Robert Burns's life and work and concluding with a fine recitation of Holy Willie's Prayer.
Sandy Mitchell gave a vote of thanks, appropriately in verse. Brian Bayne reported a very successful and extremely interesting vocational visit to the Forbro Nairn works in Kirkcaldy which had been enjoyed by all the members who attended. Scott Blyth had, with the President, attended this year's inter-school debate which had taken place at Waid Academy in Anstruther. He said that it was the most closely-fought debate for a number of years and Waid had finally triumphed. However he was pleased to report that Bell Baxter had had two individual winners.
Lunchtime Meeting on 28th January 2004
|Rev. Sheila Blount, who spoke of her time as a prison chaplain.|
A joint evening meeting with the Inner Wheel and Howe of Fife Rotary, was held in Eden House Hotel attended by members of all three clubs. Inner Wheel President Pat Robb was in the chair and Presidents Ian Copland and Sandy Green represented their respective clubs.
The pre-meal speaker was the Rev. Sheila Blount, Minister of St.John's Church, Cupar.
Rev. Sheila spoke on her experiences as a prison chaplain in Scottish prisons but particularly at the woman's prison, Cornton Vale near Stirling.
In a thought-provoking talk punctuated with lighter moments of humour, she described the conditions in prison and the Christian approach to treating prisoners as "people" just like us.
Lunchtime Meeting on 4th February 2004
|Rotarian Dereck Thomson - "Secret Places" in North East Fife|
President Ian Copland reminded members of forthcoming Community service events.
Games nights have been arranged for Bathgate Court on the 25th February and Lunardi Court on 15th March.
Stroke awareness day will be held this year again in partnership with the Howe of Fife Rotary Club and this will take place on 3rd April.
Kids' Day Out to Craigtoun Park will be on 10th June.
The speaker was the Club's own Dereck Thomson who has a keen interest in local history. He pointed out that there are many "Secret Places" in North East Fife and remembered as a child being told of Foodieash and Dunshalt harbours. One particular gem is Moonzie Kirk, a place of worship since the 13th century when it was used by pilgrims travelling to St. Andrews and in later times by the large number of local farm workers. It is still looked after by a small group of enthusiasts and services are held there twice each year.
The only officer's name on the war memorial at Moonzie is that of J. Morrison Low of Kilmaron Castle who served with the Seaforths and is buried in a war grave in Northern France The last name on the memorial is that of David Findlay VC of the Black Watch who won his Victoria Cross in action in France. He lost his life in 1916 fighting the Turks at Basra where he is buried.
Dereck finished by pointing out that the history surrounding a small Kirk like Moonzie can be as interesting and thought provoking as that of the large cathedrals.
Bill Nicoll gave a vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 11th February 2004
|ZoÃ« Smith - ChildLine Scotland|
President Ian Copland welcomed 31 members, 5 guests and honorary member Charlie Todd.
The speaker was Zoë Smith, the regional fundraiser for the charity ChildLine Scotland who has a marketing and sales background.
She outlined the origins of the charity which was established by the "That's Life" team led by Esther Rantzen following an investigation into child abuse carried out by the programme. It now has eight bases throughout the UK, with Glasgow being the only one in Scotland although another is due to be opened soon in Aberdeen.
The money raised in Scotland stays in Scotland and allows the provision of extra services like the dedicated telephone line for children living away from home and requiring support. There is also a texting phone service for those children with speech difficulties and a Bullying Line which is promoted in schools.
The aim of the charity is to listen to, comfort and protect children on a twenty four hour basis. It has good relations with the Scottish Parliament and runs campaigns to highlight specific problems.
Child Line has a relatively small number of paid staff and relies heavily on volunteers. In Glasgow there are 150 counselling volunteers as well as those carrying out administrative and fundraising duties.
Zoë then outlined the approach of counsellors when they receive calls. They listen and do not judge and try to ensure that the client is safe. They discuss problems and relationships. The clients are given options but are not interrogated.
The charity relies heavily on support from organisations such as Rotary but does itself organise a large number of fund raising events such as sponsored abseiling from the Forth road bridge and walking events of varying difficulty.
Bill Nicoll expressed the Club's appreciation to Zoë for an interesting and enlightening insight into the history and operation of a very important charitable organisation.
Lunchtime Meeting on 25th February 2004
|Bill Pagan gave a history of Charitable Trusts in Scotland|
President Ian Copland welcomed 36 members to the meeting. The speaker was club member Bill Pagan,
who gave a brief history of Charitable Trusts in Scotland and an overview of impending changes to current legislation designed to stop the existing problems of money laundering through Scottish charities. The topic was relevant to the club to the extent that RIBI is encouraging clubs to separate their charitable activities from those which are only for the benefit of the members and the proposal was to establish the Rotary Club of Cupar Charitable Trust. Among the benefits to charities would be that there would be no income tax on income and Gift Aid relief could be claimed. Bill pointed out that there may be problems with the new legislation in that Scotland will lay down its own definitions of what will pass as charities but such definitions may not be recognised by the Inland Revenue.
Euan Barbour gave a vote of thanks to Bill for his informative and enlightening talk.
In view of the benefits to the Club the meeting agreed with the proposal to proceed with the application to establish the charitable trust and it is thought that Cupar is the first Rotary Club in Scotland to do so.
The members were reminded that assistance will be required on 3rd April which is Stroke Awareness Day.
Lunchtime Meeting on 3rd March 2004
|Moira Fraser and Alison Boyle described support for autistic students at Elmwood College|
President Ian Copland welcomed 33 members, one honorary member and two guests. The speakers, from Elmwood College, were Moira Fraser, Director of College Services and Alison Boyle, Inclusiveness Advisor.
They gave a presentation outlining the work which has been carried out at the College over the last six years to provide further education courses for students suffering from autism, a problem which is increasing in this country. Many autistic students, whose often bizarre behaviour leads to them being misunderstood and isolated, have above average IQs and cannot find suitable courses of education. At Elmwood "course and care" packages can be designed around the individual students who with one to one support can successfully complete courses and gain qualifications such as HNC. As Elmwood is the only Scottish college providing these facilities students come from all over Scotland. Attending college gives them a much richer life and the members of staff help to prepare them for life beyond the College. The students are also given the opportunity to travel, something which would have been unthinkable a few years ago.
Graham Pirie gave a vote of thanks.
Following the talk, President Ian presented Moira and Alison with a cheque for the sum of £400 towards the travel fund for the autistic students. Harry Mellotte announced that the winter collection from the wishing well at the Deer Centre had amounted to £255.
Lunchtime Meeting on 10th March 2004
|Rotarian George Bett - "Summer Break, a Visit to Saudi Arabia"|
President Ian Copland welcomed 36 members and one guest, Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar R. Stewart Jones. The speaker was Club member George Bett. He titled his talk "Summer Break - a visit to Saudi Arabia", describing a number of entertaining incidents experienced in a business visit to Saudi Arabia. He had warned the President that he was in the habit of speaking for up to four hours at a sitting and was advised that he would be speaking to himself by 2.00 p.m. or thereby. He arranged to abbreviate his talk considerably. The first related incident arose from the need to have a visa to enter the country. This involved a visit to London, which started at about 09.00, broke for lunch at 12.00 and resumed at 14.00 for a further hour, waiting to be attended to, that is. It then took three weeks for it to arrive. 48 hours later he was on his way, flying by VC10 via Egypt and noticing the change that being in Muslim territory brought upon normal residents, i.e. a change from Western dress to Islamic shawls and a general cover up by women. On arrival, he saw other changes in attitude, e.g. if a car broke down, it was abandoned in the same way that if a camel died it was abandoned where it lay. Shopping was an exercise in negotiation, also called haggling. It took him three months to buy a watch but he eventually got three for the original price quoted. Visiting "Shop Square" was not a shopping exercise. This turned out to be where public executions were carried out and criminals had hands chopped off for theft, etc. How a successful appeal was handled was speculated upon. The type of building materials used was extreme, mud bricks for low rise and reinforced concrete for high rise. He made an attempt to speak Arabic but having made a sizable blunder (9 sons and 7 daughters) he reverted to English. Having had a blockage of stones in the sewerage, toilet paper was suggested. Shortly after a further blockage occurred. More stones carefully wrapped in toilet paper. The basic level of honesty appeared to be high. A dropped lens cover was returned. A car parked with its windows left open was left unharmed even after three weeks. As a Muslim country, alcoholic drinks are not officially permitted but there is a healthy smuggling industry whereby it can be obtained and consumed privately (8 bottles of Johnny Walker's Black Label in an evening among eight and no after effects - must be the temperature). A visa to leave was also required and this took two weeks to obtain, a consequence of having a company "fixer".
Ken McLaren proposed a hearty vote of thanks and the meeting concluded after further club business.
Lunchtime Meeting on 24th March 2004
|Harry Nash - "Mercy Ships"|
President Ian Copland welcomed 35 members, honorary member Charles Todd, and five visitors, including District Governor David Eglington, to our International Day lunch. The speaker, introduced by the President, was Harry Nash, President of the Rotary Club of Banff,who made a presentation on behalf of "Mercy Ships".
He is a Canadian and, before coming to Britain had spent 30 years in the Royal Canadian Air Force. He had been told a bit about "Mercy Ships" and, in his Rotary capacity, was given the opportunity to go and see for himself how it worked so he joined one of the ships in Togo, then, much impressed, he went again to Sierra Leone. He showed a promotional video, which gave examples of the work carried aboard these ships. They are staffed by volunteers, doctors, nurses, engineers, etc. who carry out surgery of all types and set out to improve water supplies, sewage disposal and general hygiene. Local doctors also receive training in the various procedures carried out aboard the ships. The Charity currently has three ships in operation and a fourth, paid for by Mrs Ann Gloag, cost £6,000,000 and is being converted from a train ferry, to complete sea trials in October and is named "Africa Mercy". This new vessel will provide 6 additional operating theatres and will allow the number of patients treated to be increased from the current level of 460,000 per year to 1,000,000 per year thereby living up to the charity's motto and providing "hope and healing", very often a life saver for the poorest of the world's poor. It has been estimated that each operation costs the charity £6 but for every pound raised, 1.7p only is used for fundraising and administrative purposes. The charity, currently receiving support from Rotary District 1010, has been chosen to receive British Rotary support in 2005 and 2006.
Rotarian Aubin Roger proposed a vote of thanks remarking that Harry's enthusiastic support of the charity commended it to us. The president concluded the meeting after the following club announcements:- The Cupar Cricket Club is most grateful for the hamper provided for the coffee morning. It had provided 7% of the total funds raised at the event. The Past Presidents Dinner had been a great success as was the Primary Schools Quiz in which nine schools competed. The winning team and the first three other places were separated only by one point in each case: a close competition from start to finish. Assistance was called for on the 17th April for "Tools Collection Day" and a presence was sought at the proposed meeting in connection with "Cupar In Bloom", to establish a lead group to promote the idea.
Lunchtime Meeting on 31st March 2004
|John Reich described his experiences as a Jewish refugee from Nazi Germany|
President Ian Copland welcomed 36 members, two visiting Rotarians, one of whom was the speaker and two guests. Rotarian Graham Bowen introduced the speaker, Past President John Reich of Glenrothes Rotary Club. John is of Austrian origin but Jewish so had to leave Germany in 1939 and came to Britain as a refugee. He was a founding partner in Russell pH at Auchtermuchty, lives in Dunshelt and has been a member of Glenrothes Rotary Club for 33 years. He started by bringing greetings from Glenrothes Rotary Club. He proposed to talk about his past life of some 84 years starting with childhood memories and of the family move from Austria to Coblenz when the National Socialist Party (Nazis) first began to flex its anti-Semitic muscles. His father was a doctor and he opened a clinic near Coblenz. John went to the local primary school but had to go to Berlin for his secondary education. As the Nazis gained in political strength, they introduced measures preventing his father from treating non-Jewish patients, then Jews were declared to be no longer German Nationals i.e. disenfranchised. Further restrictions prevented Jews from working in schools, etc. nor could they keep any silver or gold other than a wedding ring each. Extra 25% income tax was charged. John was learning to play the cello but his teacher had to stop teaching him. He continued to practise and was in the school orchestra, but will never forget, when a public performance was about to be given, he was told to leave the stage. In 1938, he was expelled from the school. He continued his education at a private Jewish school, still in Berlin, but movement about the city was increasingly curtailed; then, on 9th November 1938, following German atrocities in Poland, a Polish student shot a German diplomat in the Paris Embassy and the events of "Crystalnacht" followed, when Jews were singled out for attacks on persons and properties throughout Germany and Austria. John's father was arrested and sent to a concentration camp but later released. John left Berlin to return home to Coblenz. There he found his home totally devastated inside but externally, it was unharmed. It was decided then that he and his family had to leave Germany. His brother and sister were sent to foster parents in Britain and he set out to obtain a visa and passport. He showed the passport and pointed out the added entries indicating his Jewish identity, i.e. the added Christian name of Israel (females had the added name "Sarah"), a large, red capital "J" inside and a black diagonal band on the front. £200 was charged for a visa to Britain and, because of the restrictions, it was very hard to collect a sum of this size at the time. It was achieved however and John was able to travel to London to take up training as a fashion designer. He flew from Cologne to Croydon on 6th May, 1939. Next morning he was told that his job was required for somebody else so he had to find another job very quickly or be deported. Fortunately he was successful and found a training appointment as a scientific glass blower. He found the language a little difficult. Having been told to "Shut the bloody door", he searched unsuccessfully for such a door - no blood. He trained as an instrument and toolmaker then tried to join the army, then the air force but neither would not take him because he was more useful as an instrument maker. Eventually, he came to Scotland, met his wife to be, an Aberdonian, got married and has lived happily since.
A vote of thanks was proposed by Rotarian Bruce Rollo, who remarked that every one had been enthralled at John's talk, in which he made light of obviously dire situations. The meeting concluded with a reminder of the imminent "Blood Pressure Awareness Day".
Lunchtime Meeting on 7th April 2004
|Dennis Hopper described a yacht trip from Banff to Stavanger|
President Ian Copland welcomed 33 members and one guest to the meeting.
A new member, Eric Young was welcomed to the Club. Along with his sister, Eric, a watchmaker and jeweller, runs the well known Cupar family firm established by his father.
The speaker was Dennis Hopper a retired banker and member of the St. Andrews club.
In a slide-illustrated presentation he related his experience of a sailing trip he made along with ten other Rotary members on a chartered yacht run by the Ocean Youth Trust.
The voyage was from Banff to Stavanger and although there was a full time skipper and experienced crew members, the Rotarians were required to work and crew the yacht carrying out four hour watches.
The weather for the initial part of the journey was poor with severe gales and rain and Dennis suffered sea sickness for the first time despite having previous sailing experience.
In Norway the group met fellow Rotarians of the Stavanger International Rotary Club and were given outstanding hospitality.
Ken McLaren gave a vote of thanks.
Bruce Rollo reported that the recent Stroke Awareness day had been a great success and £125 had been raised for the Chest Heart and Stroke Association.
Lunchtime Meeting on 14th April 2004
|Willie McMartin - the International Rescue Group|
Rotarian Bob Buglass introduced the speaker, Willie McMartin from Central Fire Service. As well as holding a fire service post, Willie is also Director of Operations for the International Rescue Corps, a rapid response search and rescue team of unpaid volunteers who at a moments notice take their expertise to major disaster areas. The group became operational in 1985 and have attended 30 major world disasters. Not only is the service financially free, but the majority of the members also do this in their own time, accumulating holidays and overtime to make their participation possible. The service started with earthquakes, but the team now attends all types of disaster including famine during civil strife. Willie explained that the corps is part of a complex machine and there are often hiccups in organising their presence in a particular country. They go in for a period of 2 to 3 weeks to solve the initial problems and help train locals. Among other places they have been in India, Mozambique, Bosnia and Rwanda. Nearer to home they helped in recent major floods but this work in the UK does not receive much publicity and does not bring in donations leading to funding problems. Twenty seven overseas missions have been carried out so far including Turkish earthquakes and the aftermath of typhoons and hurricanes. The corps has organised the provision of three ship-loads of ambulances and fire engines to Cuba together with supplies of baby foods. At disaster scenes they carry out dangerous structural rescues with the aid of thermal imaging equipment and also assist in food distribution Willie concluded his talk by showing slides of rescues which the Corps had carried out. George Sharp gave a vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 21st April 2004
|Rotarian Ian Donaldson - A Trip to China|
The speaker was Rotarian Ian Donaldson, who described a memorable three week trip to China with his wife, Connie. Ian illustrated his talk with many colourful projected digital photos. The party of English, Welsh and American visitors in the tour group was a surprisingly successful mix and made the visit all the more enjoyable. In Beijing, the palace and gardens of the Forbidden City were impressive, followed by a visit to The Great Wall where Ian found the steps quite steep to climb. Standing in Tiananmen Square was a very moving experience for him. The party then moved on to Xian, to see the Terra Cotta Warriors Museum. The site was discovered in 1974 by farmers digging a well and excavation has continued ever since. No two figures of the 7000-8000 soldiers have the same facial features. In Shanghai, a visit to the Childrens Palace turned out to be a visit to a primary school where talented young musicians provided entertainment. By coach and boat, different parts of the country were visited, seeing quaint villages and dramatic mountain scenery, but the road network at times was not up to modern standards. The new Gezhouba Dam is sited in the Xling Gorge and is the world's largest hydro-electric project, but some experts are predicting ecological disaster because of the scale. A new reservoir will be created, 370 miles long, with the result that many towns will have to be demolished as they will be below water level. Ian described many other places of interest during their stay. The trip made a lasting impression on him of a country rich in heritage but in the midst of dramatic changes. After three weeks of Chinese food, a treat for Ian and Connie was to order the equivalent of bangers and mash in an expensive Hong Kong hotel. Alex Stewart formally thanked Ian for his fascinating talk. Dereck Thomson reported on the very successful Tools Collecting Day in association with Tools for Self Reliance, an organisation which sends refurbished tools to Africa.
Lunchtime Meeting on 28th April 2004
Club A.G.M. No speaker.
Lunchtime Meeting on 5th May 2004
|Juultje Goldie - Citizen Advocacy|
President Ian Copland welcomed 36 members and one guest, the speaker, Juultje Goldie, a community Development Officer with Fife Council. The topic of her talk was Citizen Advocacy. Juultje pointed out that we all need advice from time to time and, as we have a large circle of friends and acquaintances, finding someone to help and advise is normally not a problem. However, people with learning difficulties who do not operate in the community to the same degree do not have the contacts to help them solve their problems and can often be excluded from activities because of wrong assumptions about their abilities and behaviour. They therefore need friendship and support and Citizen Advocacy is one way to provide this. There is a need in North East Fife to set up a management group to organise and administer a charity which would recruit and train volunteers to act as Citizen Advocates. Each would be matched to a person with learning difficulties and would act as a friend and advisor and help the person speak up for his rights.
Rotarian Ron Smith gave a vote of thanks.
The President announced that he had recently met the ladies of Cupar Inner Wheel and had been presented with a cheque for the sum of £200 towards the Water Aid project.
Lunchtime Meeting on 12th May 2004
|Rotarian Graham Findlay - Dental Laboratory Developments in the Last Ten Years|
President Ian Copland welcomed 28 members, honorary member Rev. Jim Porteous and a guest member of rotary, Bob Eadie from Victoria, Australia. Bob was educated at Buckhaven High School and studied at St. Andrews University. He played rugby with the Howe of Fife in the era of Dave Rollo and David Whyte. Aubin Roger reported that the annual charity golf day at Elmwood had again been an outstanding success thanks to the meticulous organisation by Sandy Mitchell. The speaker was club member Graham Findlay who, after giving a résumé of his career, explored the major changes which have affected the Dental Laboratory profession in the last ten years. Diversification had been necessary because of the falling need for dentures with people taking better care of their teeth. Such things as the production of appliances for the straightening of children's teeth, mouth guards for sportsmen, metal dentures and night guards for people who grind their teeth when asleep have become in demand. On the more expensive side, veneers cemented over the existing teeth are in demand from members of the acting profession. With the use of computer technology a Swedish company can provide crowns and bridges in a new metal free material almost as strong as metal and with very accurate colour matching. A new concept which will soon be on the market is implants but they will be very expensive and only produced by large laboratories. Demands are increasing as people live longer and laboratories are making large investments in equipment and staff training to meet them. In 1999 Graham introduced a quality management system to his laboratory and this had proved very successful.
Béla Simandi gave a vote of thanks.
President Ian reported that he and Les McAndrew had recently been to Strathmiglo Primary School to present the pupils with their prize for winning the Road Safety Quiz sponsored by the club. Both had been impressed by the enthusiasm of the children.
Lunchtime Meeting on 19th May 2004
|C.M. Beau Fancher described his home state of Tennessee|
President Ian Copland welcomed 22 members and one guest, the speaker, who was introduced by Rotarian Donald Fisher. The speaker was C. M. Beau Fancher, a qualified attorney from Tennessee, studying International Relations at St Andrew's University as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar. He proposed to tell us a bit about both himself and his home state. He was born and bred in Tennessee and felt that there were a lot of similarities to Scotland. To demonstrate this he passed around a number of postcards showing various beauty spots near his home. He had a number of goodies known as "Moon Pies" which he proposed to distribute as prizes to those who could correctly answer questions about Tennessee, such as, where exactly is it? What are the adjacent States? What is the name of the state capital? Name a famous native of the state. There were four lucky winners. He went on to describe the various industries which were pursued in the state, mentioning particularly the importance of "Country & Western" music in Nashville, which is where he worked before coming to St Andrew's and cotton growing in the river delta area. Jack Daniel's whiskey is a well-known product of the state, produced, strangely enough, in a "Dry" county. The population of the state is approx. the same as Scotland, about 5M. When he returns to America, he hopes to take up an appointment as an advisor to a state politician for which, he believes his current studies will suitably prepare him. While he is here, he hopes to sample golf as played here, having never played before. It is not the most commonly played sport in Tennessee. In conclusion, he presented a banner from his sponsoring Rotary Club, that of Memphis and received one from the Cupar Club to pass on. A fulsome vote of thanks was accorded on the call of Rotarian Ian Waugh.
Rotarian Brian Bayne reported on a visit to the Rotary Club of Dachau. He had been in Germany to make arrangements for a forthcoming international exchange involving autistic students attending Elmwood College. This exchange is being partly sponsored by the Rotary Club of Cupar.
Arrangements for the Fife Show were discussed and attention was drawn to two other local events, the exhibition "Peek at the Past" in the Y.M.C.A. and the Children's Gala Day.
Lunchtime Meeting on 26th May 2004
|Alison Irving - Fife Council's Access Officer|
President Ian Copland welcomed 35 members, honorary member Charlie Todd and guest speaker Alison Irvine of Fife Council.
Following lunch Ian presided over the induction of the Club's first lady members, Susan Duff and Elaine Colliar.
Susan was born in Cupar and her father is a former secretary of the Rotary Club of Cupar. She is a solicitor with the well known legal firm of Pagan and Osborne and lists hill walking and mountain biking among her interests.
Elaine runs her own business in Corporate Training and Seminar presentation and also has interests in property investment.
Guest speaker, Alison Irvine, a former countryside ranger, is Fife Council's Access Officer and she explained how the general public will be affected by the new Land Reform Act, due to come into force later this year. It will give everyone a general right of access to all land and inland water for non-motorised recreational purposes. There will be exceptions such as school grounds and crop growing areas and there will be an onus on the individual to exercise the right responsibly. Access to golf courses will be limited to the right to cross. It will be the Local Authority's duty to govern the operation of the act and for the last three years Alison has been planning the implementation and management of a core network of paths in Fife. In three pilot areas there has been public consultation and this has shown that people do not generally know where they can legally walk. The access rights will begin in late 2004 and in the meantime the Council would like the public to bear in mind three principles when visiting the outdoors:
Respect the interests of other people,
Take care of the environment,
Take responsibility for your own actions.
Cliff Strong gave a vote of thanks. Grant McLeish announced the success of the Club's golf team in coming a close second in the Howe of Fife Rotary charity golf competition which was held at St. Michaels.
Lunchtime Meeting on 2nd June 2004
|Rotarian Vince Fusaro - "We are what we eat"|
President Ian Copland welcomed the members. The speaker was club member Vince Fusaro, who gave a layman's view of the present day problems of diet and exercise. He reminded the meeting of the adage "We are what we eat" and is of the opinion in Britain we eat too much junk food and do not exercise enough to burn off what we do eat. Importing foodstuffs from all over the world means that seasonality of diet has disappeared and with the advent of factory farming quality of texture and taste has diminished. Chicken for example, now consumed in great quantity, used to be a family treat. Vince himself has recently lost 2½ stone in weight and, despite eating well on personal and business trips, has kept the weight loss off. What has worked for Vince is eating a balanced diet, eating smaller portions, chewing his food well and exercising regularly.
Cliff Strong gave a vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 9th June 2004
President Ian Copland welcomed 36 members and one guest.
The speaker, Peter Tiernan, was introduced by Father Pat McInally.
Peter gave a fascinating talk about the shale oil industry in West Lothian in which he himself worked. The first mineral oil was produced at West Calder in 1850 and 1600 workers were employed in construction and mining of the pit. A village was built to house the workers and a school for 250 pupils was provided. The industry expanded and led to the construction of such villages as Winchburgh and Broxburn. Work was extremely hard the seam being only from 6ft. to eight ft. in height but in mining terms the death rate was low. As well as mineral oil other by-products of the process included sulphate of ammonia and candle wax. Despite being badly affected by the discovery of natural oil reserves production continued during the Second World War, the high grade shale oil being used to improve the quality of inferior natural products. Production ceased soon after this.
Clark Stewart gave a vote of thanks.
Evening Meeting on 16th June 2004
Club Assembly - Proposals for the new year
Lunchtime Meeting on 23rd June 2004
Lunchtime Meeting on 30th June 2004
|Past President John Hendry spoke on the history of the monument at The Mount|
President Ian Copland welcomed the members to lunch. The speaker was past President John Hendry.
In view of the vocational visit to the monument at The Mount due to take place that evening he gave a brief history of the structure. This outstanding Cupar landmark was erected by the people of Fife in 1826 in memory of John, 4th Earl of Hopetoun who owned Over Rankeillour House. He was a distinguished soldier, serving at the Battle of Alexandria in 1801 and distinguishing himself in battle during the Peninsular War in Spain. He died in 1823 at the age of 57 and was buried at Abercorn. The Earl of Roslyn laid the foundation stone for the monument and it was built by a Ceres builder over a period of three years. A fine statue of the Earl stands in front of Dundas House in St. Andrews Square in Edinburgh. Donald Cameron gave a vote of thanks.
Following the talk, President Ian presented John with a certificate marking his 30 years of membership of Rotary.
The Walk for Water which had taken place on the Lomonds the previous Sunday had been very successful, having raised in the region of £1500.
The latest collection from the wishing well at the Deer Centre was £246 and a total of £4000 has been raised since it was first opened in 1997.
Lunchtime Meeting on 7th July 2004
|Rotarian George Sharp - Community Policing|
President Ian Copland welcomed the membership and two visitors to lunch. The speaker was Rotarian George Sharp.
In the absence of his speaker, he spoke on the subject of Community Policing to good effect, giving examples of local incidents, actions and consequences.
A hearty vote of thanks was expressed by the members.
The President reminded the members that the next meeting was the hand-over meeting, when President-Elect Bill Low would take up the office of President.
Lunchtime Meeting on 14th July 2004
President Ian Copland welcomed the members to lunch and advised that he would shortly hand over to President-Elect Bill Low but first would comment on his Presidential year. He summarised the events successfully completed and thanked his Members of Club Council, Committee Chairmen and Club members for their support through out the year. He then handed over the Presidential Chain of Office to incoming President Bill Low wishing him every success in his year. President Bill Low then took over the chair and presented Past President Ian with his Past President's badge and commented on his successful year, hoping for a similarly successful year and thanking him for his efforts.
Lunchtime Meeting on 21st July 2004
President Bill Low welcomed the members and a visitor. There was no speaker, so the time was spent enjoying each other's fellowship.
Lunchtime Meeting on 28th July 2004
President Bill Low extended a special welcome to Father Gerald from Uganda who was able to report that a Rotary Club had recently been formed in his own community.
Speaker after lunch was Past President Gavin J. Reekie who gave a live demonstration of the club's web site using a laptop computer incorporating a mobile phone link and a projector.
The Rotary Club of Cupar had been one of the earliest clubs to create a presence on the internet some 10 years ago at a stage when only eight members had e-mail. Now 38 members have access and make regular use of the technology.
As the main developer of the site, Gavin explained how he had constructed the site, creating sections for club news, members profiles, details about the meeting place for visiting Rotarians, a history of the club since its foundation in 1932, an explanation about the Rotary movement, details about Cupar Inner Wheel and links to other Rotary and local internet sites.
Among recent developments have been the addition of photographs of club activities, an archive of reports of weekly meetings and a search facility. The site also carries much useful information about our local area for the visitor.
The number of those accessing the site has doubled over the past year.
The club's formal vote of thanks was given by Rotarian Ken McLaren.
Rotarian Andrew Morrison reported on a visit to the Rotary Club of Saint Alban's, Vermont, while visiting the United States and experienced the use of the Rotary Songbook for the first time.
The club agreed to support a donation of £200 to the vital humanitarian work needed in the Darfur region of Sudan.
Lunchtime Meeting on 4th August 2004
|Andre Hawryliw - MD of Compugraphics|
The guest speaker, introduced by Past President Graham Bowen was Dr. Andre Hawryliw, Managing Director of Compugraphics in Glenrothes, a company established in Fife in 1969 under Graham Bowen's leadership.
Compugraphics are manufacturers of photomasks which are created to an extremely demanding specification for a world wide customer base. Accuracy, quality and reliability of the product are critical when supplying customers in the semi-conconductor, optoelectronics and microelectronics industries.
Dr. Hawryliw explained that as we rely upon complex electronics for our home personal computers, television sets, medical equipment, mobile telephones and aircraft systems, these electronic systems are all dependent on photo masks. Photomasks provide the template for semi-conductors, using a plate made from the highest quality quartz or glass which holds a detailed and precise image of an integrated circuit. These are produced in thin wafers, the process being repeated over and over to create a multi-layered semi-conductor.
The units of measurement involved and the sterile production environment were not easily comprehended by the layman, yet we all benefit from the skills employed to produce these critical components.
The Club's formal vote of thanks to the speaker was given by Bill Nicoll.
Club President-Elect Donald Cameron reminded members about arrangements for the Club's fundraising coffee morning at the Corn Exchange on Saturday, 14th August.
Lunchtime Meeting on 11th August 2004
President Bill Low extended a special welcome to Jim Braid who was present to lend his support to the Artificial Heart Charity. Rotarian Andrew Morrison was in charge of Fellowship.
Although no speaker was scheduled for the meeting, those present heard from Rotarian Ian Waugh about the pioneering work of the Artificial Heart Fund, established in 1999 to help support research and the use of mechanical devices to treat and reverse heart failure.
Following the first phase during which 14 implant operations using Jarvik Heart Pumps were completed, the Fund propose to move to a full clinical trial of 25 implants, part funded by the National Health Service, but funds are necessary to purchase the pumps.
Patients are selected from throughout the UK and Jim Braid's presence was testimony to the success of the procedure.
Locally, fund raising was planned with a golf day at St.Andrews Bay Resort and a Casino Night.
Secretary Grant McLeish drew member's attention to the arrangements for visiting the Mercy Ship, Anastasia, which would be visiting Dundee during the District Conference in September.
Sports Convenor George Sharp announced arrangements for a bowling challenge against the Howe of Fife Rotary Club on 23rd August.
Rotarians Vince Fusaro and Graham Pirie reported on their visits to Rotary Clubs in Newcastle, New South Wales and the Howe of Fife respectively.
Lunchtime Meeting on 18th August 2004
|District Governor John Minhinick|
President Bill Low welcomed members to the lunchtime meeting and introduced District Governor John Minhinick and his wife Sheila. Les McAndrew said Grace.
Graham Pirie reported that the recent Lomonds walk in aid of WaterAid had raised the sum of £1215. Last week's fund-raising coffee morning had raised in the region of £1200 and President-Elect Donald Cameron thanked all members and wives who had worked hard to make the occasion a success.
Following lunch, John Minhinick talked about the year ahead. He pointed out that the District organisation is there not to dictate to clubs but to support and advise them. While he noted the extremely successful Polio Plus campaign which has virtually eradicated polio worldwide and applauded the support of the Anstruther lifeboat by District 1010 clubs, he emphasised that, although celebrating its 100th birthday next year and being recognised as the world's most influential non-governmental body, Rotary International cannot rest on its laurels and has many challenges ahead. He hoped that Rotary's rules and regulations would change to meet the changing world and ensure its existence for many years to come. John then summarised the main aims for the year 2004/2005 of both R.I. President Glenn Estess and RIBI President Gordon McInally. Glenn has asked that Rotarians focus on four main areas in the coming year:
1. The Family of Rotary
2. Health - such things as dental and pre-natal care in the third world.
3. Literacy and Numeracy both at home and abroad.
4. Water projects in the third world where many of the illnesses and diseases are the result of contaminated water supplies.
Gordon, the youngest RIBI President and a Scot is looking for support for two principal initiatives:
1. Rotary's African Help. This is a project to help the many orphans in Rwanda and South Africa to live in their own communities.
2. Rotary Special Respond. This aims at equipping members of local communities with defibrillators and training them in their use. John himself asked that in the coming year clubs should give strong support to Rotary Foundation and stressed the need to expand through increased membership with the aim of reducing the average age.
Les McAndrew gave a vote of thanks on behalf of those present.
Lunchtime Meeting on 25th August 2004
|Rotarian Ken McLaren - A Norwegian Coastal Voyage|
Bill Low, Club President welcomed Rotary Club members to their weekly meeting in the Howe of Fife Rugby Club Rooms on Wednesday, 25th August and drew attention to a number of events which would involve Members.
On Wednesday, 1st September Club Committees would convene over lunch with reports to be submitted to Club Council on 27th September. The Club's delegates would be attending District Council on 8th September, and members were reminded that the President's Reception would take place at Fairways Restaurant on 9th September. Sports chairman George Sharp reported on a successful inter club bowling challenge between Cupar and Howe of Fife Rotary Clubs, with both Cupar rinks being victorious.
The speaker following lunch was Rotarian Ken McLaren, who provided an account of his voyage using one of the fleet of vessels serving the coastal fringe of Norway, a journey of some 1200 miles. The Norwegian Coastal Voyage ships sail every day of the year from Bergen to the North and back again. For many years the northern part of Norway was cut off from the south for up to five months over winter until in 1891, a shipping service commenced after the government invited shipping companies to improve the situation. While the service was gradually extended, in the early days sailing was only possible during daylight hours due to lack of night-time navigation aids. Even from the earliest days, tour operators and travel agents recognised the attractions of this route. Cargo vessels incorporated passenger accommodation and now the fleet of eleven ships offer the latest in passenger comfort and on board facilities with panoramic lounges which allow the passing scenery to be enjoyed whatever the weather. The ships also serve the local population with thirty four ports of call. The voyage which Ken enjoyed took in some famous ports such as Trondheim, Tromso and Kirkness, which is a matter of 10 kilometres from the Russian border.
The vote of thanks for Ken's talk was given by Past President John Hendry.
Lunchtime Meeting on 8th September 2004
Bill Low, Club President welcomed Senior Vice-President, Duncan Pickard, Rotary Club of the Howe of Fife along with two additional visitors to the weekly meeting of the Club on 8th September. Fellowship responsibility was in the hands of Past President Scott Blyth and the speaker, John Cater from Gauldry was introduced by Rotarian Harry Mellotte. John Cater gave a witty and informed illustrated talk on the subject of Scottish Doocots. These form prominent features in our rural landscape and many have survived due to substantial construction and craftsmanship. Prior to the 18th Century, doocots were a standard feature of estates, being particularly prominent in Fife because the crops provided a ready source of food for the pigeons. Pigeons provided a valuable source of meat and eggs all year round until the early 19th century as their function became obsolete with the introduction of new farming methods that allowed cattle to be fed in winter.
The slide presentation illustrated the differing examples and shapes of doocot which developed and showed surviving examples from around North East Fife. The ingenuity of those who constructed the doocots included access for the pigeons by louvered vents or small arched openings, protection from rats by incorporating a projecting string course around the outside and the use of a revolving ladder called a potence for the collection of eggs. One superstition which may have protected doocots from destruction was that there was a belief that the demolition of a doocot would result in the death within a year of a family member of the person responsible for its removal. A local saying that the possessions of a Fife Laird were, "a puckle land, a lump o' debt, a doocot and a law plea" illustrated the importance of the doocot to landowners!
John Cater's enthusiasm for his subject had taken him around the byeways of Fife and further afield to France where he had traced down examples of French dovecotes.
The thanks of the Club for an entertaining presentation were given by Past President Scott Blyth. Members present were reminded of a forthcoming fund-raising event on Friday 24th September when East Fife Male Voice Choir would be entertaining an audience at Cupar Old Parish Church Hall. Tickets would be placed on sale to the public at Bonnygate Dental Surgery and Secrets, 13 Bonnygate.
Lunchtime Meeting on 15th September 2004
|Mary Ray - Development Coordinator for Volunteering Fife|
Club President-Elect Donald Cameron was in the chair at the weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar on Wednesday, 15th September and welcomed 25 Members. Final arrangements for a tour of the Mercy Ship Anastasis, docked at Dundee, on Sunday 19th September were announced by Dereck Thomson. The speaker after lunch, Mary Ray, was introduced by Past President Ian Copland.
Mary, who is local Development Co-ordinator for Volunteering Fife spoke with enthusiasm about the opportunities which volunteering offered. opening doors to individuals and organisations, utilising the skills and talents of all ages. There were many different reasons for individuals to become involved in voluntary work. Some were seeking work experience, others were looking for a change of activity following retirement, some wanted to make a contribution through use of their time because they still had a work ethic. For some volunteers, working in a voluntary capacity brought them into contact with a group with whom they could enjoy fellowship, and in quite a few cases it was about rebuilding skills and confidence in a non demanding environment. Mary explained that in April 2003, the existing Volunteer Centres in Fife together with the Fife Volunteer Development Agency amalgamated to become one Centre with local offices in Dunfermline, Cupar and Kirkcaldy. The purpose of the amalgamation was to provide a consistent approach to volunteering throughout Fife. A variety of clients are matched to appropriate volunteering opportunities through the three offices. Examples of voluntary activity were given, including a prescription delivery service in the East Neuk and a new project, InVOlve, to enable people with support needs experience voluntary and community activity. Employer-supported volunteering was also suggested as a development tool for local workforces.
The Club's formal vote of thanks to Mary was given by Rotarian Fr. Pat McInally.
Lunchtime Meeting on 22nd September 2004
|Helen Armitage - Curator of Fife Folk Museum|
Twenty-nine members assembled for the weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar on 22nd September to be welcomed by Club President Bill Low. Club business reports included an account of the visit made to the Mercy Ship Anastasis docked at Dundee by a party from the Club on Sunday, 19th September. International Service Chairman Dereck Thomson reported on the collection of a donation from a Fife School of a significant quantity of surplus school text books to be forwarded to the charity, Books Abroad for shipment overseas.
The speaker after lunch, introduced by Past President Scott Blyth was Helen Armitage, Curator at Fife Folk Museum, Ceres.
Helen has been Curator at Fife Folk Museum since the year 2000, and her tenure of office has coincided with an essential restoration project on the property. A retaining wall which bounds the Ceres Burn was in danger of collapse and there had been other settlement within the museum. As the property lies within an outstanding conservation area, through the hard work of the trustees, in 2002 a £400,000 funding package was secured from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic Scotland, Fife Environment Trust and Fife Council to stabilise the property and make the museum more interesting and attractive to visitors. Prior to the contractors' moving in, the museum had to emptied and put into storage. In addition, a disaster plan had to be prepared for the building and contents. The contract work commenced in April 2003 and happily the weather was kind and allowed good progress to be made. Traditional materials and crafts were utilised throughout, contingency budgets had to be drawn upon to deal with additional repairs identified as work proceeded. The local school prepared a time capsule to mark the work that had taken place and fund-raising included the sale of roof tiles which contributors could sign their names on. Eventually, it was possible to retrieve artefacts from storage, mount new displays in display cases donated from other local museums for the official opening on 9th April 2004. With new audio visual presentations and better provision for disabled visitors, the improvements have brought about a significant increase in visitor numbers and there are plans to increase opening hours in 2005, requiring additional volunteers. Interest in the Museum by those present was obvious from the range of questions put to the speaker.
Club President Bill Low gave the vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 29th September 2004
The weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar took the form of a Club Business Meeting, which Club President Bill Low conducted. attending as a guest was Immediate Past District Governor, Iain Young who made a surprise visit to present a Presidential Citation on behalf of Rotary International to recognise the Club's programme over the preceding year. Rotarian Tom Gilmartin was on fellowship duty.
President-Elect Donald Cameron led the reports on Club Service Committees.
The Communications Committee proposed to host an information meeting for the benefit of new members and compile a Club Handbook.
Additional reports were received concerning sporting fixtures, classification and membership and speaker supply.
Past President Bruce Rollo reported on the Community Service activities which were planned. Arrangements were in hand for Carol Singing at residential homes, Christmas donations were approved and the club gave support to a proposal to restore an engraving by Sir David Wilkie which forms part of the Pitlessie Hall collection. Plans were also outlined for a school road safety competition. The Vocational and Youth Activities Committee report was presented by Past President Brian Bayne. On 20th October, the senior Bell Baxter pupils who had attended the Rotary Youth Leadership Award camps in the summer would be attending to report on their experiences. The Club also planned to involve local school pupils in two other Rotary projects, Challenge Enterprise and Inter School Debate. A date had been arranged for the local heat of the Primary School Quiz hosted by the Club, 17th March 2005. International Committee Chairman, Dereck Thomson advised that the Books Abroad project had successfully delivered two consignments so far this year and stressed that the organisation required only school textbooks. A limited collection was planned to gather in additional tools for Tools for Self Reliance. A special guest speaker had been arranged for the Club's International day on 23rd March, 2005.
Past President Graham Pirie, chairman of the Rotary Foundation Committee thanked the members for their support for Home Entertainment to raise funds for the Rotary Foundation. The Club is providing a counsellor for a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar attending St Andrews University and it is anticipated that she will be attending the Club in the near future. The Initial phase of fund-raising for the Club's Water Aid Project has almost reached the target figure and will now allow the Club to move on and seek a formal partnership overseas and a matching grant.
Lunchtime Meeting on 13th October 2004
|Charles Russell - "Active Ageing"|
President-Elect Donald Cameron took the chair for the meeting of Cupar Rotary Club on Wednesday 13th October when he welcomed 32 members and two guests from the Rotary Club of Stirling, Bill Sim and Stuart Anderson. The guest speaker, Charles Russell, was introduced by Past President Donald Fisher. The theme of the talk was Active Ageing, an appropriate title given that the speaker, who had been retired for 10 years was active in lending his experience in a voluntary capacity through various initiatives. Through the organisation, Scottish Business in the Community, Charles Russell is area co-ordinator for Fife. In that role he encourages recruitment of retired executives to assist with a wide range of projects to benefit local communities. This pool of talent has turned its expertise to assist family centres, provided mock interviews for students, conducted a survey for the Red Cross on its services in Fife, given business advice to Mobus and helped in the preparation of successful applications for grants. He calculated that the 25 members in Fife had contributed 20,000 hours of advice and assistance to local communities. Based at the VONEF office in Cupar, he hoped that it would be possible to attract additional volunteers for the Senior Executive Programme. Charles Russell was also active as a member of the User Panel for Age Concern Scotland, The European Network of Older People and a mentoring network in Fife established to assist schools, unemployed and disadvantaged individuals.
The Club's formal thanks were given by Rotarian Béla Simandi.
Lunchtime Meeting on 20th October 2004
|Squadron Leader Charles Russell - Why RAF pilots need to practise at low altitudes|
President Bill Low welcomed 30 members, honorary member Charlie Todd and guest speaker Sqadron Leader John Gilbert to the meeting on October 20. John served in the RAF for 31 years, was latterly involved in electronic warfare and is now employed as community relations officer for southern Scotland. His illustrated talk was on the subject of the necessity for practising low flying to give pilots the ability to fly automatically in much the same way as we drive a car. Simulators are widely used to train pilots in cockpit procedures and instrument flying but cannot replicate the physiological or psychological pressures of flying at low levels. John illustrated the value of low flying in avoiding and penetrating an aggressor's radar and anti-aircraft systems. It is a highly demanding skill which is not quickly learned and is only attained through progressive training and maintained through continuous practice. The RAF is always willing to consider complaints and, where the circumstances warrant it, to pay compensation where low flying causes damage, but John emphasised the necessity to raise such matters quickly and to record the details of the incident accurately. The presentation finished with an interesting video of Chinook helicopters operating in the demanding conditions of Afghanistan.
Ron Smith gave a vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 27th October 2004
|Rotarian Vince Fusaro - Cheese and its Place in History|
Club President Bill Low welcomed fellow Club members of the Rotary Club of Cupar to their weekly meeting on Wednesday, 27th October when Rotarian Vince Fusaro provided an after lunch treat in his informative talk on cheese and its place in history. He speculated that the earliest preparation of cheese happened by accident through milk being left in a receptacle in a situation where it was transformed into an early version of cheese. In the fullness of time, cheese was prepared as an expression of the land it came from. Cheese can be of ovine, caprine, bovine and equine origin, with the bovine and equine animals being more abundant where lush pastures exist, while ovine and caprine animals exist on poorer and scrub like pastures. It is no accident that softer, fatter cheeses come from Northern Europe and the harder drier cheeses from the Mediterranean and higher pastures. Cheese is mentioned frequently in history and legend. No less than 20 kinds in Babylon, in the Old Testament it is the food of heroes, in the Odyssey, Polyphemus had flocks of sheep and his cave, according to Ulysses had racks laden with cheeses. In Rome, part of the Legionnaire's staple diet along with the dried Carob Bean and wine was cheese. Mature salted cheese did not spoil and was highly nutritious. However the decline and fall of the Roman Empire was in part attributed to the decline in cheese consumption as taste dictated that cheese was poor man's fare. In Vince's view, the King of cheeses from italy is Parmigiano, while the Queen of Cheeses is Mountain Gorgonzola. Parmigiano Reggiano can be available as 2 year old, Stagionaco 2-4 year old Vecchio or 4-6 year old Stravecchio. Parmagiano Reggiano comes from the milk of Reggiane cows fed on Alfalfa and upland grasses, using milk from two milkings. Those present were then treated to a tasting of the Parmigiano with balsamic vinegar.
The Club's formal vote of tanks was given by Ken Mclaren.
Lunchtime Meeting on 3rd November 2004
Lunchtime Meeting on 11th November 2004
|Rev. Charles Thrower - Chernobyl Children's Lifeline|
President Bill Low welcomed members and two guests, Rev. Charles Thrower, past President of Anstruther Rotary Club and Steve Smith, treasurer of Chernobyl Childrens' Lifeline, Fife Link.
Charles and Steve explained the workings of, and the need for, the organisation. Some 70% of the fallout from the 1987 Chernobyl nuclear disaster landed on adjoining Belarus, a very flat country, contaminating it for decades to come. Thousands of children are born with, or later develop, various forms of cancer. In 1992 Victor Mizzi initially founded the charity to help the families of deceased firemen killed by radiation after working at the disaster site. It now has branches nationwide which each year host some 3000 children for a four week break. The uncontaminated air helps the dissipation of the radiation in their bodies and they benefit greatly from the healthy diet and medical checks. Some estimates suggest that the one month break can add two years to their lives. The Fife Link annually hosts a group of sixteen children and their leader.
Jim Robertson gave a vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 18th November 2004
Cancelled. Joint meeting with Inner Wheel and Howe of Fife Rotary Club on 16th November '04.
Lunchtime Meeting on 25th November 2004
|Eilidh Cage and Kyle Watson - RYLA Participants' Reports|
Thirty three Members were present at the weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar on Wednesday, 24th November when President Bill Low inducted a new Member to the Club, Hilda Scott, who was introduced by Past President Ronnie Law.
Hilda, who will hold the classification, Retail - Ladies' Wear is a well known member of the town's business community through her association with Scotts Ladieswear in the Bonnygate. Also present were two pupils from Bell Baxter High School, Eilidh Cage and Kyle Watson who were introduced by Past President Brian Bayne.
In early July, on separate weeks, each had participated in Rotary Youth Leadership Camps at Abernethy along with other young people from across the North of Scotland. Both gave accounts of their experiences which included hillwalking in the Cairngorms in wet weather, orienteering, cycling, rock climbing, abseiling, canoeing and other sporting challenges. They also had the opportunity to hear high profile visiting speakers who made a great impression on them. As well as praising the organisation and activities which had pushed them to new levels of personal achievement, the experience had taught them to get on with people from different backgrounds and created new friendships. President Bill presented both Eilidh and Kyle with certificates of achievement to mark their attendance at the Camp.
Rotarian Ken McLaren proposed the Club's formal vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 1st December 2004
Club President Bill Low chaired a Special general Meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar on Wednesday, 1st December, Rotarian Alastair Clark was responsible for fellowship. The business of the meeting included reports from Club Service Committees led by President-Elect Donald Cameron.
The Club's planned Community Service activities were dealt with by Past President Bruce Rollo who reported on the programme of carol singing visits to local residential homes which would be commencing on 1st December at Lunardi Court. The Club would also be making Christmas donations to needy children through the Social Work department. In 2005, a Road Safety Competition for local Primary Schools will be held in partnership with Fife Road Safety Officers, a Kids Out Day for pupils attending Kilmaron School would be taking place and the Club's environmental project at Tarvit Pond would progress.
Past President Brian Bayne gave a report on Vocational and Youth Activities. Once again, the Club would sponsor two pupils from Bell Baxter High School to attend a Rotary Youth Leadership Camp in July, while further activities arranged by Rotary Clubs for High School pupils included an inter-school debate and participation in the Challenge Enterprise programme. The local heat of the Annual Primary School Quiz would take place on 17th March 2005.
Rotarian Dereck Thomson, Chairman of the International Services Committee advised of the successful outcome of a recent appeal for tools to be sent for refurbishment and despatch to Tools for Self Reliance. Other collections of school textbooks had taken place for despatch to Books Abroad.
The Foundation Committee report was presented by Rotarian Bill Nicoll. The Club will fund-raise for Rotary's own charity by means of Home Entertainment. The Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar at St Andrews University who is being looked after by the Club is Lindsey Moore who is settling in well. The Club's Water Aid Project has now reached the stage where formalities in obtaining matching grants are now being addressed.
President-Elect Donald Cameron who chairs the Ways and Means Committee spoke of a number of potential fund raising activities and particularly the Club's Golf Day to take place on 5th May, 2005, organised by Past President Sandy Mitchell.
President Bill Low reminded those present that to commemorate the Centenary of the founding of Rotary International in 2005, the Club will be contributing to an all-Fife effort by Rotary Clubs and a local project in Cupar. The Meeting agreed that the Club Office Bearers for the Rotary Year 2005-2006 should be: President: Donald Cameron, President Elect: Aubin Roger, Secretary: Grant McLeish, Assistant Secretary: Jim Laing, Treasurer: Bill Low.
Lunchtime Meeting on 8th December 2004
|Duncan Brown - Human Resources Management Consultant|
Club President Bill Low welcomed 35 members and an overseas guest, Eric Adams, from Stratford, Canada, to the weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar on Wednesday 8th December. Rotarian Alex Stewart introduced the guest speaker, Duncan Brown,who, following extensive experience in Human Resource management at Rosyth and with Fife Council, now acts as an independent consultant in Human Resource Management.
His role finds him advising small and medium companies, typically employing from 5-100 employees who may not have "in house" expertise and knowledge of employment law. When he listed the range of employment legislation in force, it became abundantly clear why professional input is necessary in the fraught field of employer-worker relations. He also pointed out that the government has two occasions each year when they implement changes in employment law, 1st April and 1st October which have come to be known as "red tape days". The Employment Act of 2002 was a major piece of legislation with many of its provisions being implemented in 2003 and 2004, bringing new laws into force and introducing changes to existing law. Also, the Employment Relations Act 2004 received Royal Assent in September and will come into force in four stages. The key areas in this piece of legislation are trade union recognition, membership and activities. Duncan referred to the requirement on employers to provide written statements of main terms and conditions of employment to workers within 8 weeks of starting, new minimum guidelines for dismissal, disciplinary and grievance procedures, stressing that all procedures must be followed up in writing, stick to certain principles and be followed consistently.
Other changes to the Disability Discrimination Act of 1995 alter the duty upon employers to make reasonable adjustments to working practices to accommodate a disabled employee. "Family Friendly" legislation also provides more protection to employees in the context of their arrangements for their children. In the culture of burgeoning red tape, it is not surprising that the Small Business Council has accused those introducing new legislation of stifling small business and discouraging the creation of jobs as many employers are reluctant to take on staff because of employment regulations. However, while me may rail against some of the legislation, we must work with it and manage it within the law. He concluded that the best way to cope is to ensure that procedures are properly thought out.
Aubin Roger, Junior Vice-President provided the Club's formal vote of thanks to Duncan Brown for an informative and enlightening presentation.
Lunchtime Meeting on 15th December 2004
|Tamara Simpson, Rotary Ambassadorial Student|
President Bill Low welcomed 28 members and one guest, the Club's ambassadorial student Tamara Simpson from Pennsylvania.
Following lunch Tamara was formally introduced by Graham Findlay. With the aid of a slide show she talked about the area in Pennsylvania where her family stay and gave a little of her family background. Both of her parents were dead by the time she was fourteen and she and her sister and two brothers were raised by grandparents. Family is very important to her and she is returning home for Christmas. Her home town is New Kensington which is quite close to Pittsburgh and was formerly a Mafia area. Pittsburgh is an industrial centre producing coal, steel, glass and pharmaceutical drugs. It is also the home of the Pittsburgh Steelers football team and Tamara is a great fan. Following school she did volunteer work in an animal centre and also worked with younger children in reading and writing. She is now at St. Andrews University studying for an M. Litt. in creative writing and is currently working on a novel about Burke and Hare. Tamara is uncertain as to the course her future will take. Her options include continuing studying for a long distance PhD from St.Andrews, writing full time or teaching.
Graham Finlay thanked Tamara for her talk and gave a vote of thanks.
Lunchtime Meeting on 22nd December 2004
Rotary Club President Bill Low welcomed Members and guests to the Club's Christmas Lunch which was held at the regular meeting venue in the Howe of Fife Clubrooms on Wednesday 22nd December. Fellowship was in the hands of Club Secretary Grant McLeish. The invited guests were representative of local organisations, Cupar Inner Wheel, Cupar Ladies' Probus, Cupar Probus Club and Cupar Community Council. Following a traditional Christmas repast, those present were given a thoughtful account of how we celebrate Christmas by Fr Pat McInally, ably assisted by Cliff Strong and Susan Duff.
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Thanks to Roger Siddle of the Carnforth Rotary Club for his revolving Rotary wheel.