On arrival members were informed that the cost of the meal would now be £15 instead of £12. No real objections as most members were happy with the choices and quality of the meals, but advance warning would have been appreciated.
Attendance was 9 for a mainly business meeting, and the first item was a brief report of the latest Ayrshire Coordination group meeting attended by the President and Past President. Recruitment was a main issue to increase numbers, and clubs were encouraged to make use of pull-up banners and other publicity materials. Greater care should be taken of Data Protection issues in any public communications. Corporate Membership should also be offered as an option. There seems to be growing support for the proposed Christmas Ball “among some members” – proposed date 15 December.
President Jim is encouraging each member to present a “short talk” at club meetings when there is no invited speaker. To start the process, Secretary Dave presented some reflections on the “Cold War” which developed after the 1939-45 War. Military hostilities between nations had ended but there had developed an uneasy stand-off between the two major power blocks of nations – the USA and Western Europe on one side, and the USSR and Eastern Europe on the other. Distrust between the 2 blocks led to the existence of huge armies and the threat of tactical nuclear weapons. Hostile attitudes – and some acts – continued, each block accusing the other of expansionist ambitions. In 1990 it looked as if some deal or agreement to “live and let live” had been agreed, but subsequent events have led to the conflict in Ukraine, with no end in sight.
The club raffle was won by Jim Liddell.
Muirkirk Gala Day Saturday 16th
This was our second year’s attendance with a stall at Muirkirk Gala Day. Last year the weather was dry, sunny and warm – this year it was wet, cloudy and cold! All made worse by strong winds! Our stall was inside a marquee tent which gave some protection, but the open entrance allowed the wind to blow in, and opening a panel in the opposite wall to attract more visitors was quickly abandoned as it simply increased the problem with wind!
The weather affected the number of visitors and their length of stay, so it was no surprise that our stall did not make much money for our chosen charity – the Honeypot Children’s Respite Centre. Instead of a bottle stall (which we had been asked to change at short notice), we had a variety of small items e.g. ornaments, toys, scarves, pens, books etc. as well as a few larger boxed items. Participants with winning raffle tickets seemed to be content with their prizes from the motley collection but numbers and takings were few.
We finished up with roughly £40 profit, and still have at least half of the items on the table, plus a car load of other items not on display. No need to hunt around for things to include in our next venture!
We had a reduced attendance of members (only 7) but were happy to welcome 4 Rotarians from Prestwick to our meeting in the Dumfries Hotel.
Our speaker was Sgt. Jason Drury, of Police Scotland, covering generally East Ayrshire. He joined the police as a cadet 14 years ago, and has had experience in Saltcoats, Glasgow housing schemes, Irvine and Arran before his present duties.
Rather than talk generally about services and programmes, he asked members to identify concerns they have about crime in the area, and what should be the priorities.
Concerns expressed included – unruly behaviour of young people at Cumnock Bus Station on Friday nights, aided by free bus passes for teenagers, health issues e.g. drug taking, cannabis in Catrine, organised crime, road crime and rural crime (poaching). Jason responded to each issue raised which led to general discussion. It was recognised that levels of staffing and resources were not as high as they used to be, and improved technology only goes so far in tackling incidents.
The raffle was won (again) by Jim Liddell.