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Notes on Last 6 Club Meetings

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Evening Meeting held at Watts Restaurant on Wednesday 12th September 2018

Club President Colin Mackenzie led the weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar on the evening of Wednesday 12th September, while Past President Dermot Stewart was responsible for fellowship.
The main business of the evening was to receive a report from Treasurer Willie Nicoll and Past President Donald Cameron on recent exploratory meetings that had taken place with representatives of local schools and others about the future of the Cupar Summer Fayre/Gala.
Explanations were given as to the financial standing of the previous event and while there were some aspects that required attention, there were sufficient funds to commence planning for the event in 2019. A new constitution was being proposed comprising a committee of eight, with two representatives each from Castlehill Primary School, St Columba's R.C. Primary School and Kilmaron School, with two representatives from Rotary.
Pupils at each of the schools would be encouraged to fundraise in related projects. It was emphasised that the Rotary Club would take a role as a service to the community. Rotarians would provide volunteers on the day of the event. Having heard the report and discussed the issues arising from questions posed by members, the Club agreed that they should play a part in organising and assisting with the Cupar Summer Fayre/Gala in 2019.

Evening Meeting held at Watts Restaurant on Wednesday 5th September 2018

Past President Peter McKinnon was in the chair for an informal business meeting held by the Rotary Club of Cupar on Wednesday 5th September.
The Club officers who were present provided progress reports on the activities for which they had responsibility. On Youth Activities, Past President Ian Copland suggested a date on which Rotary Youth leadership Awards could be made to the two young people sponsored by the Club this year. The need to keep in contact with those who had been sponsored by the club in the past was emphasised, so that their progress as a result of attending the leadership event could be ascertained. Work continues to establish at Rotakids Club in a local primary school.
Past President Donald Cameron for Community Service reported on recent contacts made with the aim of reviving the Cupar Summer Fayre. Rotarian Ian Rutherford from the International perspective sought help in transporting bicycles acquired for "Bikes for Africa" to a local collection point in Fife. A good collection of tools has been acquired to pass on to Tools for Self Reliance. Towards the end of October, the club would asked to work on the shoe box collection for providing gifts and essential items for those in need in eastern Europe.
There were further discussions about aspects of the club's internal operations, including speaker supply and membership recruitment ideas from Bill McSeveney.

Evening Meeting held at Watts Restaurant on Wednesday 29th August 2018

The Rotary Club meeting on 29th August took the form of an evening of fellowship, but nevertheless club members did deal with some urgent business under the leadership of Club President Colin Mackenzie. On hearing of the appeal for assistance arising from the reports of natural disasters in Kerala, the club agreed that they should commit to the purchase of a Shelterbox and make a donation to Mary's Meals, each donation being to the value of £700.

Evening Meeting held at Watts Restaurant on Wednesday 22nd August 2018

The Club’s meeting on the 22nd August was chaired by President Colin Mackenzie. Treasurer Willie Nicoll reported that the Wishing Well at the Scottish Deer Centre had brought in £336.10 in the last four months.
After dinner the club was addressed by guest speakers Frank Sullivan, Professor of Primary Care Medicine at St Andrews, and Dr Louise Dow who is the SHARE study coordinator.
Prof. Sullivan explained that the Scottish NHS has a very strong base for medical research, because of its world-beating health datasets, the strong medical tradition in its universities, and willing participants. When planning a project and applying for funding, researchers have to estimate how long it will take to recruit enough volunteers of the right age, sex and medical history to ensure their research gives clear results. He gave as an example of this process's going wrong the “TRACE RA” study, which aimed to find out if atorvastatin given to patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis without known heart disease would reduce the likelihood of their having heart attacks in the future. The target was to have the study completed in five years, but it proved impossible to recruit sufficient suitable patients within that time.
The purpose of SHARE is to act as a link between researchers and potential subjects using a register of people who are willing to share their medical records in an anonymised database. Nearly a quarter of a million Scots are now registered with SHARE, and around 5000 new recruits signed up every month. The scheme is funded by £300,000 per year from NHS Scotland, and generates income from researchers who are willing to pay for the service. The youngest recruits are 11 years old.
SHARE also manages a “spare blood” project - storing the small amounts of blood left in sample tubes after laboratory tests have been done and providing a resource for researchers who want to study the genetic implications of certain diseases and their response to treatment. No further blood samples are required from volunteers.
Anyone interested in signing up can do so at
Past President Pat Mitchell proposed the Vote of Thanks to the two speakers.

Evening Meeting held at Watts Restaurant on Wednesday 15th August 2018

President Colin Mackenzie welcomed members to the meeting at Watts on Wednesday 15th August, and received reports from members who had visited other clubs during the last week’s “Scatter Week”.
Treasurer Willie Nicoll estimated a net income of £1000 from the club’s Coffee Morning, once all expenses had been accounted for.
After dinner, Past President Peter McKinnon spoke about his childhood in North-East Kintyre from his birth in 1958. His was the last planned home birth to take place in the village of Skipness, which faces Arran across the Kilbrannon Sound, where the main local employer was the Skipness estate. Owned by the Oakes family since the 1930s, the estate is mainly low-grade agricultural land around the ruined 13th century Skipness Castle, which had been built as a defence against the Vikings. The nineteen houses in the village all had their own gardens, supported by two churches, a manse, a shop and the village hall. There were twenty-five houses and steadings on the estate, with four tenant farms. The estate employed a factor/farm manager with eight shepherds (who also looked after cattle) five tractormen and three forestry workers.
During the hard winter of 1963 the road in to Skipness was closed for two weeks and supplies had to be brought in by boat.
Although farming is still important in the area there are fewer jobs, and many in the village are retired. On the other hand, there has been growth in forestry and green energy projects such as the construction of wind turbines. In turn, these industries have brought about a need for more haulage businesses. Tourism and leisure activities provide seasonal work too.
Peter still visits occasionally, but few of his age-group are still there. Of the four in his class at the primary school, three boys (including Peter) left, and are living and working in Fife, and the one girl is still there doing secretarial work.
After a lively question-and-answer session, Past President Willie Nicoll thanked Peter for his talk.

Evening Meeting held at Watts Restaurant on Wednesday 1st August 2018

Club President Colin Mackenzie was in the chair for the meeting of the Rotary Club of Cupar on Wednesday 1st August.
Past President Donald Cameron had responsibility for fellowship.He welcomed Rotarian Jimmy Spankie from the St Andrews Rotary Club who briefed members on an event that he was planning through an informal committee to provide elderly residents with information on the services available to them at an event in Cupar Corn Exchange in September. He was essentially seeking the assistance of members in facilitating attendance by providing transport to and from the event. During the remainder of the informal meeting, officers of the club who were present gave updates on their sphere of responsibility.
Club Treasurer Willie Nicoll reported on the funds currently available in the charity, water and club accounts. The draw was made for Charity Choice, which members pay into during the year and two lucky recipients nominate a charity of their choice to receive funds, This time it was David Nimmo and Alastair Alexander who will each give £575.50 to their chosen good cause. Having heard a presentation from " Playlist for Life", the previous week, on the motion from the President, it was agreed to award £250.00 to this charity.
Some discussion took place on arrangements for the Club Coffee Morning which was taking place on 4th August. The club was advised that work funded by the club at Kilmaron School had been completed.


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Thanks to Roger Siddle of the Carnforth Rotary Club for his revolving Rotary wheel.