District News, April 23 2021

Ian MacGillivray decided to give the lads a replacement ball.

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Guild remains busy during challenging year

Despite the challenges of the past year, Killean and Kilchenzie Guild has remained busy through a variety of fundraising activities. The group’s convener, Pat Rawson, has shared the group’s annual report,  below, with the Courier.

Last year I began by commenting that in ‘these preposterous times it comes as no great surprise to find that I am writing a report on an event that has not happened’. If anyone had told me then that 12 months later I would be reporting on a whole year of non-events, I would have given them an old fashioned look. But here we are.

The guild has not been meeting formally but it has been busy, so my report will begin with the obvious activities, clearly seen by many. First was the virtual sale of work, when strenuous work by members, and generous donations by others resulted in the splendid total of more than £1,200 being raised. In these difficult times, this money went straight to the church.

We celebrated Guild Week by having a sort of picnic in Muasdale. The ‘sort of’ was because the Covid regulations changed between the planning and the execution, but as an awareness-raising exercise it was successful, if only on the ‘What were you all up to?’ basis.

Likely our most obvious activity was the response to the Blythswood Christmas Shoebox Appeal. This is always well supported and fun to do, but this year was quite a challenge on several counts: our ability to get out and about to fill the boxes, and the stringent regulations concerning their storage and collection.

As usual, the lorry called in at Muasdale on its way to Campbeltown, a gesture that makes our activities much easier, and, this year, despite everything, we sent off 42 boxes.

This total represents the work of the three congregations of West Kintyre and Gigha, but I don’t think anyone will complain if we single out the efforts of Cathy McLean and Clachan.

Less obviously, we have continued our support for the Leprosy Mission, both by donations, via the blue boxes, and by collecting stamps.

Financially, we are stable. This was helped by the fact that Edinburgh reduced the amount of our levy, so we were able to meet our commitments. Next year will have to see a surge in fund-raising activities.

All these activities are important, but much more part of the guild ethos is the fact that we have kept each other going, with prayers phone calls, brief meetings where possible, cards, emails, gifts of home-baking and produce.

It has not been much fun, but we have made it, and for this we should be proud and thankful.

Killean and Kilchenzie Guild convener Pat Rawson.
Killean and Kilchenzie Guild convener Pat Rawson.



Bus driver pops up with new ball

West Coast Motors bus driver Ian MacGillivray has been heaped with praise after an act of generosity.

The driver of the 926 Campbeltown to Glasgow service was at Inveraray on the evening of Sunday April 11 when a rugby ball being used by some lads on the front green rolled past the front of his bus. Ian didn’t know, however, that it had bounced off a wall and landed under a rear wheel. He moved off and — with a loud pop — it was no more.

Feeling bad, he later posted on Facebook to try and find the lads to offer them a new ball.

The response was phenomenal as his message was shared 300 times and received 79 comments by the middle of last week.

Ian eventually tracked down the ball’s owner, Archie MacColl-Smith, who had been there with pals Kory Kirkhope, Angus MacAskill, Finlay Macgregor and Lachlan O’Connell.

Archie said: ‘When it popped it sounded like a gun going off.

‘Ian got in contact with me and said he has a gift to give us on his next trip through Inveraray, which is very generous of him considering it was our fault.’

He joked: ‘Lachlan was the one with the dodgy kick that ended up under the bus. He will not be in the starting team when we are able to play rugby again.’

Ian remained modest. ‘I’m overwhelmed by the response on Facebook,’ he said, ‘and if it makes people smile, then that makes me smile.

‘I know how I’d have felt at that age so I decided to replace the ball for them.’

Ian MacGillivray decided to give the lads a replacement ball