Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

No.111                       Price 1/4d - with LIFE AND WORK - 8d LOCAL MAGAZINE ONLY                        September 1970.

Minister: Rev. Tom Calvert, The Old Manse, Langholm. Tel. 256.

Session Clerk: Mr. Archibald Findlay, Langholm Lodge. Tel. 453.

Clerk to Board: Mr. E. C. Armstrong, Town Hall, Langholm. Tel. 255.

Treasurer: Mr. Donald Lamont, Royal Bank of Scotland, Langholm. Tel. 430.

Organist: Mr. A. C. Mallinson, A.R.C.O., L.R.A.M., 72 Henry Street.

Church Officer: Mr. W. Elliot, 3 Buccleuch Terrace.

Hall Caretaker: Mr. John Scott, 54 William Street.

Text for September -"Jesus said, Go and do as he did." St. Luke 10. 37. N.E.B.

In August, 1970, we celebrated the Centenary of the British Red Cross. Our Text for September comes from the Parable of the Good Samaritan, which can be taken as the foundation and inspiration of the wonderful work done by the British Red Cross Society down through the hundred years of its history, seeking to obey our Lord's command, "Go and do as he did."

First a few words about International Red Cross

The International Red Cross celebrated its Centenary in 1963, for it was founded in 1863, while the British Red Cross Society was founded in 1870. The International Red Cross organisation was the result of a book about a battle, the Battle of Solferino. The French had gone to the help of the Italians to drive the Austrian tyrants out of their country and set Italy free. It was a long and terrible battle, this Battle of Solferino, leaving over 4000 wounded and dying soldiers of both French, Italian and Austrian uncared for on the battlefield. It so happened that a young Swiss banker was spending a holiday in the area, and seeing the suffering left uncared for he was filled with horror and pity. He himself worked day and night, finding water for the thirsty, dressing wounds, writing to parents of dying soldiers, and spending his own money on what comforts were procurable for the wounded men. But he saw that many died who need not have died had there been sufficient willing hands to tend to the simplest and most basic needs.

On his return to Geneva he published at his own expense a modest book called "A Memory of Solferino" in which he told of the horrors he had witnessed, and appealed for a kind of Relief Society to be set up by the humane nations of Europe to care for the wounded of all sides in war, and for the training of volunteers to work in its service. This young Swiss banker's name was Henri Dunant, and the people of Geneva were so moved by his book that within weeks his appeal led to the formation of the sort of societies he had suggested, and within a year, an international meeting took place which led to no fewer than sixteen countries signing the Convention of Geneva in August, 1864. This led to the formation of the International Red Cross which is today the biggest humanitarian organisation in the world, not only caring for the victims of war, but in a practical way helping to bring immediate relief to victims of famine, plague and earthquake anywhere in the world.

The British Red Cross Society

Britain was not a foundation member of the Geneva Convention which formed the original Red Cross, though Britain did show sympathetic and practical interest from the first. But it was not until 1870, seven years later, when the Franco-Prussian War was declared, that Colonel Lloyd-Lindsay, V.C., wrote a letter to the Times, proposing and appealing for a British Red Cross Society for the care of wounded and prisoners of war be formed, along the lines of the work carried out in the Crimean War by Florence Nightingale. It was to care for wounded and prisoners on all sides in battle. Col. Loyd-Lindsay, later Lord Wantage, served throughout the Crimean War with great distinction, and had an ability to keep his head when all about him were losing theirs. He was much more a man of affairs than Dunant, but he too showed a concern in advance of his time for the well-being of the ordinary soldier. He was a great landowner with estates in half a dozen counties and with a reputation for the shire horses and pedigree cattle he bred on the 12,000 acres he farmed in Berkshire. He became an M.P. in 1865 and was Financial Secretary to the War Office under Disraeli. Within a week of his letter to the Times, the British Red Cross Society was formed, and a few weeks later the first contingent of fully equipped British surgeons and nurses crossed the Channel. Along with German, Belgian and French Red Cross Societies they were soon on the field of battle, and together with an Anglo-American Ambulance were able to cope with the heavy casualties at the Battle of Sedan. In their work they were accorded protection by wearing the Red Cross as armlets or on ambulances - a red cross with white background, the reversal of the Swiss flag, was from then on recognised everywhere and granted protection under the Geneva Convention, except of course by the Japanese in the last war.

We all know something about the splendid work done by the Red Cross in recent wars, in sending parcels and letters to prisoners of war, and how much this has done to preserve the health and morale of the men. Without this help many would have perished, and in addition to sending parcels excellent work has been done in hunting lost persons in enemy countries and among refugees in reuniting families. I do not have figures by me for the last war but in the 1914/18 war when we had 170,000 British prisoners of war in Germany, over two and a half million parcels were sent them at the rate of three parcels per man per fortnight, and at a cost of six and a half million pounds.

Local Work of Red Cross in times of Peace

The work of the Red Cross is equally important in times of peace in caring for victims of disaster. In France air ambulances and parachutist nurses are ready to fly to disasters: the Dutch Red Cross is equipped to give medical advice by radio ships at sea: the Thai Red Cross runs a snake farm for the production of anti-snakebite serum: and the Germans have started a domiciliary oxygen service for patients with heart and lung diseases. Perhaps the most important British contribution, apart from the V.A.D.'s has been the Volunteer blood-donor services begun in the early nineteen-twenties. And we all remember how four years ago, during the dreadful days of 21st and 22nd October, 1966, a hundred and sixteen dead children were dug out of the slurry that had enveloped Pantglas Junior School in Aberfan. As each small blackened body was recovered, saturated and sometimes disfigured, it was wrapped in a blanket and then, twelve at a time, the bodies were taken by ambulance to the Bethania Chapel, which had become a mortuary. There they were delivered into the hands of the Red Cross workers, some of them women who had never seen a corpse before, washed and tidied and carried into the chapel to be laid one child each pew. It was probably the toughest and most heart-rending job that any Red Cross volunteers in this country have been called to do, yet it was such a job as the Red Cross is always standing by prepared to do. During the eight days that followed the sliding of the tip on to the school Red Cross personnel worked in shifts, not only in the mortuary but in manning first-aid posts and helping to sustain rescuers. From their stores they provided a thousand blankets, five hundred sheets, pillows, crockery and various comforts. They had more willing and trained workers than could be used, for there are 200,000 members of the British Red Cross Society, and almost every one of them would have come at a moment's notice to Aberfan if their help had been called for.

The Red Cross carries on constantly a great work in a dozen related skills to nursing wounded in war time, like running Clubs for handicapped, for elderly, helping in hospitals with library supplies and shopping requirements, organising meals on wheels, raising funds for equipment and supplies when needed, supplying walking-aids and wheel chairs, and a wonderful service to aged or ailing who have to travel long journeys by road, rail or air.

The Red Cross is the Good Samaritan living and working today.

The Parable of the Good Samaritan is our Lord's portrait of himself, and in the work accomplished by the Red Cross in the past 100 years we are seeing him who was crucified on the Cross of Calvary living his risen life among us as he did when upon this earth in the days of his flesh - when "he went about doing good, and healing all manner of diseases".

I know we often hear people who claim to be disbelievers in our Lord Jesus shouting about social evils and injustices in the land, carrying banners and making themselves a general nuisance to law-abiding citizens, but one thing is certain that any real practical work that is being done to help victims of disaster or injustice is being done by men and women who are proud to work under the Red Cross "The wonderous Cross On which the Prince of Glory died". And they are the best evidence that the Lord Jesus Christ is living and active in this present century, the men and women playing the part of the Good Samaritan, obeying our Lord's command, "Go and do as he did".


Dear Fellow-Member,

Activities in July and August

Since my last letter I spent a week in early July with the Air Training Corps in Wattisham R.A.F. Station, near Ipswich. It was a relaxing and delightful holiday living for a week in the Officers Mess of an operational station when the Commanding Officer, the Officers and staff were most kind. Along with me from the 1152 squadron were Flight/Lieut. John Brotherston, and Flying Officer Ken Cooper, and along with our cadets from Annan we joined with 1138 squadron from Ardrossan. On the Sunday morning I shared with the Station Chaplain, Rev. E. L. W. Pratt, in conducting a Family Service in the Station Church. This Service was attended by the Station Commander, Group Captain J. Mellers, D.F.C., who took a close and personal interest in the welfare of the cadets. During the week I enjoyed a flight in a Chipmunk aircraft over East Anglia, and enjoyed a visit to St. Edmundsbury Cathedral Festival where the 1100th anniversary of the martyrdom of King Edmund was being celebrated in, mostly by youth.

I would like to express warm thanks to those who stood in for me in the Old Parish Church while I was absent. Miss Anne Cartner who conducted the Morning Services on Sunday, 5th July with great acceptance, and John Scott with Robert Hart who conducted the Evening Service to the pleasure of those attending. Also on Sunday, 12th thanks to Niall Weatherstone for taking the 9,30 a.m. Half Hour Service. Niall is always appreciated for his gifts in song and music in leading a Service. And Mr. J. MacIntosh for leading the 11 a.m. Service that day, and speaking to our people about his impressions from an Elders Conference at Carberry Tower. I have heard from many words of warm appreciation of the whole Service. I am very proud to have in our Church and district young men and women able and willing to witness for their faith in this way.

Outing to Kirkcudbright

The outing to Kirkcudbright for senior citizens of our community, kindly financed by Mr. Malcolm Carmichael, resident in Canada, was attended by 171 people who enjoyed a lovely drive through delightful country, and a good meal at Kirkcudbright. As a token of appreciation those present contributed to the purchase of flowers given to Malcolm's mother, Mrs. Carmichael of West Street.

Festival of Flowers

The Festival of Flowers week proved an occasion of great interest. The Flower arrangements by the Langholm Floral Art Club was greatly admired, and I express our best thanks to the many ladies who gave of their skill and time. Also best thanks to all who donated flowers and flowers in pots and donations of money to purchase flowers. The Evening Service on the opening Sunday was attended by a large contingent of senior citizens from Stanwix and Longtown along with our Over 60 Club, and my thanks to Mrs. Flint, Hostess of the Over 60 Club for making arrangements and Mrs. Mackie and Mrs. Wilson for reading the Lessons.

I reckon that well over 700 visitors including a coach party of senior citizens from Maryport visited the church during the week and admired the flower display. On the Friday evening quite a unique form of Service was led by Organ and Bands. Three different forms of musical instruments combined for three of the world's most popular and well-loved pieces of music, "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring", "The New World Symphony", and "The Hallelujah Chorus". Taking part were our late organist, Mr Andrew Mallinson. Langholm Town Band, under their conductor Mr. Alfred Chapman, and three pipers from the Langholm Pipe Band. During this Service Mr. Ian Rodger rendered a solo.

Common Riding Service

The climax of the Festival of Flowers week was the annual United Churches Common Riding Service, attended by Cornet Neil Davidson, and his Right and Left Hand Men, Ex-cornets W. Laidlaw and C. Johnstone, with Ex-Cornet J. M. Maxwell, chairman and members of the Common Riding Committee, Provost Grieve and members and officials of Langholm Town Council. I was assisted in this Service, and at the previous ceremony at the War Memorial by Rev. J. J. Glover representing Erskine Parish, and Mr. Tom Lockie representing the Congregational Church. This was an exceptionally large congregation, and the impression that came home to me as I stood in the pulpit was that three finer young men could not be found in any community in the land than our present Cornet and his Right and Left Hand Men. At the close of this Service I called upon Provost Grieve to present on behalf of the congregation a copy of the New English Bible to Cornet Neil Davidson. The Evening Service was attended by members of the Lodge Eskdale Kilwinning No. 107, and conducted by Rev. J. Cameron Grant from Sunderland.

Boys' Brigade Annual Camp

I deeply regret that duties prevented me visiting the Boys' Brigade Camp this year. From what I hear a very happy week was spent under canvas at Hedderwick Hill Farm, Dunbar. The weather was kind and each day found the lads active swimming, canoeing and engaged in various sports, all of which contributed to good appetites and keeping the officers busy at the cookhouse. The final night was spent in a feast and sing-song when prizes were awarded to the tent with highest marks for kit and layout. This went to tent No. 2, with Cpl. Andy Ritchie, Ptes. Douglas Anderson, Billy Geddes and Kenneth Hill. Captain James Kyle was presented with a clock by Lt. Ramsey Johnstone on behalf of officers and boys of the Company on the occasion of his retirement as Captain and as a mark of warm appreciation for all he has given and been to the lads.

Early Morning Services

The attendance has kept up well through the holiday month and there can be no doubt whatever that this short early Service meets a real need for young and old. I am grateful to Mrs. Barker, Jim Hunter, Mrs. Burnett, and Mrs. Roebuck for their splendid services at the piano, and to the young people who form the choir.

Sunday School

The Sunday School commences a new session on Sunday, 6th September meeting in the hall at 10.15 a.m. and thereafter meeting with the Morning Service at 11 a.m. and leaving for classes after the first hymn. We are in need of additional teachers and I will be glad to hear of anyone willing to lend a hand in this good and important work.

Battle of Britain Thanksgiving

The Moderator of Assembly, Rev. Dr. Hugh Douglas, writes to all congregations of our Church, "Although memories are short, and it is now 30 years since the Battle of Britain, this is surely one date which will always be remembered in our country. In 1970, Battle of Britain Sunday will fall on 20th September. I hope all congregations will observe this anniversary. All those who were in this embattled island during the lovely summer of 1940 will remember the urgent and united spirit of the people. There was anxiety, but there was no panic. There was no shallow optimism, but there was hope. No one could see the way ahead clearly, but almost everyone believed that we should win through. And the reason why this was possible was that the British people saw the Battle of Britain being fought and won. We know how narrow a margin lay between defeat and victory. The balance was turned by the spirit of the people, particularly by the courage and devotion of the Royal Air Force". The Services on Sunday, 20th September, at 9.30 am. and 11 a.m., will be appropriate to thanksgiving for the Victory of the Battle of Britain.

Harvest Festival

This has been a good year for winning the crops and we will have opportunity for giving thanks for harvest on Sunday, 11th October. On the previous Saturday the church will be open to receive gifts of flowers and fruit for church decoration.

Woman's Guild

The opening meeting of the Guild will be on Tuesday, 29th September, when slides on the Holland excursion will be exhibited by ladies who were on the outing. The new syllabus for the session 1970/71 is now available and has a variety of interesting programmes for the new session.

Re-Wiring of Old Manse and Adoption of County Water Supply

During the past summer the water supply from a Glebe spring failed for several weeks and it became necessary to go over to the County Water Supply. It was with considerable reluctance that this was done as the private supply from a spring which is believed to have supplied the Wauchope Castle was always clear and sweet. In past summers during dry periods it has run low, and this year completely failed and made it necessary to carry water some distance. The electric wiring is in dangerous condition, and some weeks the power supply has been of necessity cut altogether. We understand that the wiring is 37 years old and so this was to be expected sooner or later. The re-wiring is to commence early in September and will cost in the region of £290. This expenditure will fall heavy on the Fabric Fund and will make necessary a special effort of fund raising at a later date.

Passing Away of Organist and steps being taken to meet present needs

1 give below a tribute to the memory and lifework of our late organist, Mr. A. C. Mallinson. With his sudden passing we have been fortunate in being able to call on the services of Mr. Cecil Carmichael for the month of August, and I would like to express thanks and appreciation for his services on the past three Sundays, at Mr. Mallinson's funeral service and at weddings. The Kirk Session has instructed the Session Clerk to advertise in the Cumberland, Dumfries and Hawick press for applicants to fill the vacant post of Organist and Choir Master of the Old Parish Church.

Classes for First Communicants

Classes for young people wishing to become members of the Church commence on Sunday, 20th September in Vestry after Evening Service.

Sympathy with the Bereaved

On 4th July, as the result of a tragic accident, Norman Plowright of 32 Langton Road, Great Bowden, Market Harborough. Norman, one of the most delightful young men I have known, was married in our Church to Murial McKail on 9th April, 1966. Whenever north Norman and Muriel were in church, and so happy with each other and in their home. Our deepest heartfelt sympathy with Muriel and her father and mother Mr. and Mrs. T. McKail, Merrick, Walter Street.

On 13th July, Miss Isobel Hogg Kerr Beattie, A.R.I.B.A., F.S.A., Thrush Wood, Carrutherstown, at age of 69. Miss Beattie was born at Mossknowe, Canonbie, and she was well known in Dumfriesshire as an architect, and as a lover of horses and riding. Her special interest was ancient buildings and castles of Scotland. As she served as a civilian instructor and officer in charge of equipment in the 152 Squadron A.T.C. of which I am chaplain, she came to regard me as her minister. She was a wonderful character and will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

On 19th July, Mrs. Jessie Hill, formerly of the Slack, Caulside, Canonbie. She passed away at the age of 88, and was a most cheerful character. Remembered for her good humour when a patient in the Thomas Hope Hospital. Our sympathy with her family of Ralph and Betty.

On 28th July, Alfred William Bell, 5 David Street, at age of 68. Alfred was Cornet in 1921 and would have been presented with his jubilee gift next year. An accomplished horseman, he had a wonderful way with horses. A lover of stock and sheep which he delighted in keeping. A keen follower of outdoor sports, particularly hunting. He was a man of very kindly disposition and loved by all our community. Our deep sympathy with his widow Isa Smith Armstrong, and his daughter Sheila Johnstone.

On 2nd August, Lt. Col. Angus Alexander MacFarlane-Grieve, M.C., M.A., at The Leap, Hallpath, age 79 years. He was well known and loved in our town and district, and generous to our church. Our sincere sympathy with his widow Sarah, sons Michael and Sandy, and brother Gavin.

On 4th August, Annie Warwick Wylie, of 49 Rowanburn, age 78. Mother of Mrs. Ella Irving, The Bield, Wauchope Place. Our sincere sympathy in bereavement.

On 10th August, Andrew Cooper Mallinson, at 72 Henry Street, age 75. The passing of Andrew Mallinson marks the end of a page of history in the Old Parish Church. He had a distinguished career as a Church Organist, beginning at the age of 16 as organist of St. Aidan's Church of England Carlisle. He joined the 4th Battalion Border Regiment at Kendall in November, 1914, and served with the Regiment in Burma, and North West Frontier and Central India. At the end of the war he served for a year as organist of Rangoon Cathedral. On his release from the army he was appointed organist of Christ's Church, Carlisle, where he served until his appointment as Organist and Choir Master of Langholm Old Parish Church in 1926, which means that he has completed 44 years of grand service as our organist and 20 years as Music Master of Langholm Academy. After coming to Langholm he gained the highest qualifications in music and voice production, obtained Associateship of the Royal College of Organists, and Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music, and for 44 years gave the young people of our town the benefit of his professional skill. He also played an important part in the formation of the Langholm Branch of the Hawick Savings Bank of which he was manager for several years. He is remembered with deep affection by many whom he trained to sing in their youth. He was married in 1927 to Ethel Simpson, and they were blessed with 43 happy years together, and with their daughter Freda Margaret. Our deepest sympathy in their loss and sad bereavement.

On 10th September, John W. Mackie, 3 Holmwood Crescent, passed away at age of 70. Jack, as I familiarly knew him, was a member of the Congregational Church, but a close friend of mine, and a frequent visitor to the Old Parish where he often read lessons at special Services. I knew him best for the part he played in the Air Training Corps as civilian instructor in electronics. He gave invaluable service to the Over 60 Club using his car freely to help elderly attend the Club. He was ready to help any good work that came to his notice, and we are all going to miss him very much. Our deepest sympathy with his widow Jean M. Corry.

With warm greetings to all our people.

Yours sincerely,

TOM CALVERT, Minister.



July £88 12 9

Aug £74 6 8


July £87 19 6

Aug £51 16 6



July £43 5 0

Aug £34 15 0


July £36 3 2

Aug £44 5 4


19th July - Alexander Simon John, son of Mr. and Mrs. Alec Murray, Tarrasfoot Farm.

19th July - Alan, son of Mr. and Mrs. George Beattie, 23 Caroline Street.

2nd August - Gillian Anne, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harry Aitken, 3 Rosevale Street.

23rd August - Craig Walter, son of Mr. and Mrs. Norman Allan, 9 David Street.

30th August - Craig, son of Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert Richardson, 5 Holmwood Drive.


8th August - Sydney Seaton Cooper, 8 Caroline Street, to Agnes Waterson Ritchie, 1 Holmwood Gardens.

15th August - Lewis George Grant, Hawthorn Villa, Livingstone Place, Lockerbie, to Maura Aynsley Donovan, Broomholm Cottage.

29th August - William Earsman, Tail House, Canonbie, to Elizabeth Hotson, 12 Holmwood Gardens.

5th September - John Cowan Wallace, 20 Charles Street New, to Carole St. Clair Wallis, 14 Caroline Street.


4th July - Norman Plowright, 32 Langton Road, Great Bowden, Market Harborough.

13th July - Isobel Hogg Kerr Beattie, Thrush Wood, Carrutherstown. Age 69.

28th July - Alfred William Bell, 5 David Street. Age 68.

10th August - Andrew Cooper Mallinson, 72 Henry Street. Age 75.

"I am convinced that there is nothing in death or life - nothing in all creation that can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.". Romans 8.39. N.E.B.


13th September - 9.30 a.m. Half-Hour Service, 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. Jean Armitage, Glowrie, Hillside.

20th September - 9.30 a.m., 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. W. Smith, 28 Caroline Street.

27th September - 9.30 a.m., 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. A. Erskine, 35 Eskdaill Street.

4th October - 9.30 a.m., 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. Robert Borthwick, 18 Henry Street.


(1) Kirk Session called to meet Thursday, 17th at 7.30 p.m., followed by meeting of the Board at 8.30 p.m.

(2) Greenbank Coffee Morning and Bring and Buy Stall - Saturday, 12th September.

(3) Autumn Garden Fete, Erkinholme -Saturday, 19th September, opened at 3 p.m.