Down memory lane, October 27 2017

The Challenge of Need.

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Traditionally memory lane deals with news at least a decade old and sometimes a century.

This week the Courier remembers the events of a year ago when Auchinlee staff faced a bleak Christmas, and the residents the loss of their home. It was saved but in a stay of execution, as at the end of March 2018, the remaining residents are scheduled to move into Lorne Campbell Court.

Things were very different in 1969 when the Church of Scotland published: The Challenge of Need, A history of social service by the Church of Scotland 1869-1969.

Former Auchinlee matron Eva MacDonald MBE has held onto this publication for decades.

Chapter 14 is about the post-war efforts to open Eventide homes for the elderley. Pages 138 to 141 deal with Auchinlee and it is clear the house was gifted to the church, although the church subsequently paid Mrs E C L McKersie £4,000 and, as the donor, she performed the opening ceremony on July 30, 1952.

During campaign meetings last year, led by Save Auchinlee, it was repeatedly stated that Auchinlee belonged to the town. That seems not to be the case.