Stonehaven Golf Club- championship week

It’s been another tumultuous week at Stonehaven Golf Club, the men’s and ladies championships taking centre stage in a climate better suited to the Caribbean. We’ve had some terrific weather of late and there’s no better sight than the coastline view from the 14th tee on a sunny day, even if you have ripped your scorecard up nine holes prior. We are blessed to be members of this club, you could be too if you’re into golf and looking for a place to call home.

The ladies championship was won this year by Fiona Lamont, her twelfth title no less. Something tells me she knows her way around this manor. Fiona’s three round score of 229 gave her fourteen shots to play with over runner up Wilma Lawrence who headed a chasing pack of twenty for the scratch trophy. Terri McKenzie won the Handicap championship with a total of 192, our congratulations go to her and all participants. Photographed are the aforementioned plus ladies captain Pam Droy and Jackie Hunt.

In the men’s championship, another multi-time former champion leads at the halfway stage. Neil Irvine is one stroke ahead of two players, his son Craig and Kevin Riddell (see below), both former champions too, Craig many times over. Sunday’s family roast in the Irvine household must have been a tense affair, father and son gurning at each other through narrowed eyes over meat and two veg, psyching each other out in advance of the final two rounds. They’ll reconvene on Wednesday and Friday along with the rest of the twenty four strong field, eight of whom lie within ten shots of the lead. It’ll take something spectacular to deny one of the three front runners victory but you never know. If you’ll pardon the indulgence, I myself shouldn’t be overlooked, handily placed a mere twenty shots back and ready to pounce. One must never underestimate the underdog, even if he has fleas.

The final round is on Friday evening. Find out who won by tuning in to the club’s weekly radio show on Mearns FM, Mondays 8-9pm.

Kevin Riddell cuts a dash on his way to contention

Results 

Ladies Club Championship 

  1. Fiona Lamont (229)
  2. Wilma Lawrence (243)
  3. Jackie Hunt (282)

Ladies Club Handicap Championship

  1. Terri McKenzie (192)

Men’s Club Championship after 2 rounds

  1. Neil Irvine 129
  2. Craig Irvine 130
  3. Kevin Riddell 130

Stonehaven Golf Club latest news

(Photo depicts Simon Mitchell teeing off at the 17th on his way to securing 96th position)

Once again the Cost Del Cowie offered golfers scorching temperatures in which to compete this weekend. 138 players dabbed on the sun cream and loaded up on liquids ahead of three hours pleasurable golf. Recent conditions have seen a proliferation of players wearing shorts, it’s been akin to a milk bottle factory shop floor up there, but we’re not complaining, it’s only five minutes since we were playing in four layers and tammies.

The scoring was excellent once again this week, both of the winners of the men’s section breaking 60 in their respective competitions. The Centenary Trophy was won by Calum Delaney after a superb nett 57 with Ian Carnie finishing a single shot further back. In third place was Neil Irvine, surely wondering where the justice is in golf given his gross score of three under par proved insufficient to secure victory. Playing with such a low handicap must be like running a hundred yard dash in wellington boots while your competitors wear trainers. Still, the portents look good for the former club champion as he limbers up for the annual championship commencing next weekend.

The Ladies’ championship also kicks off this week, three rounds to be played over the course of a few days. The champion’s identity will be unveiled during the inaugural Stonehaven Golf Club radio show on Mearns FM, Monday 8-9pm, Captain Ian Wood the special guest. The men’s championship will have reached the halfway mark by then too so there’ll be lots to discuss, members and non are encouraged to listen in. 

Male and female members combined to compete for the Ruby Stevens Trophy this weekend also with a dead heat demanding a playoff on a date to be decided. Congratulations to Catherine Duncan & Callum Mitchell who’ll contest the playoff with Fiona & Bob Armstrong. It was an excellent event with competitors enjoying one another’s company over the course of eighteen holes in perfect sunshine. Stonehaven is a welcoming, inclusive golf club and if you’d like to be a part of it you’d be received with open arms.

Results 

Centenary Trophy

  1. Calum Delaney 57 
  2. Ian Carnie 58
  3. Neil Irvine 59

Wednesday Stroke

  1. Christopher Shearer 59
  2. Mike Hampton 59
  3. Douglas Lorimer 61

Ladies Medal

Division 1

  1. Jan Bradford 68
  2. Rose Riddell 68
  3. Fiona Armstrong 70

Division 2

  1. Teresa McKenzie 70
  2. Susan Henderson 70
  3. Evelyn Gilmour 71

Invercarron Resource Centre for Older People Facing Review?

David stands by the signposted entry to the Centre

IT’S staff have all been moved to Viewmount and its doors remain firmly locked – and our community councillors are resolved to fight any proposed closure of a centre that opened in 1995 to give our older residents a social hub.

In 1999, the first ‘Invercarron News and Views’ newsletter proudly described the Resource Centre as: ” A purpose-built edifice, tastefully furnished, warm and comfortable, with friendly, helpful and caring staff and volunteers, always ready to help.

”The aim of the centre is to provide facilities to enable fit and frail older people to mix.”

Around 30 groups were using the Invercarron

Before Covid struck, a huge range of activities took place – Stroke Club, Macmillan Gentle movement class, Visual Impairment Group, Carers Support, Carron Club Day Care, Lunch Social Club, Alzheimer’s Scotland Day Care, Alzheimer’s Yoga, Weekend Respite, Coastal Health Carers Support, Arthritis Care Stonehaven, Samson Art, Stonehaven Art Club, Floral Art Club, Yoga, Craft Group, board games, friendly teas, Music and Movement, Bridge Club, gentle exercise class, Knitting group and our Talking Newspaper. There was also occasional use by our Community Council, Horizon, Fireballs, and other local groups.

So many people have been asking when the Centre will be re-opening.

Councillor shared update

At Tuesday night’s meeting of Stonehaven and District Council, members discussed an update shared by Councillor Wendy Agnew, who made enquiries about the future of the Centre on behalf of her ward colleagues.

It states: ”Thank you for your query. To clarify the situation, the building at Invercarron is owned by the Council, however it is operationally managed by the Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP). We have a small in-house day service that was held 2 days per week and a number of HSCP staff were based in the building. As working practices have changed, due to the  pandemic combined with the refurbishment of the Viewmount building, HSCP no longer require to use Invercarron as a staff base. The day service is currently in process of being reviewed due to the lack of demand for the service.

”There has been no decision made about the future of the building, however I am about to take a report to our senior management team to ask permission to commission a review on its future use.”

We are all going to be old

Our community councillors clearly felt a review was merely a step closer to closure of the Invercarron Resource Centre.

David Lawman said: ”That a building that was designed to support our senior citizens is under review and might be lost is frightening – worse than losing the Mackie Pool.

”We are all going to be old.”

Mr Lawman added: ”Surely we should be sending the message out to our councillors and the officers that closing it should not be a consideration.”

Centre ‘murdered’ by Council

Alistair Lawrie said the community council should convene during its summer break if necessary. And, as the Centre had become difficult to access and was poorly staffed, he said he felt it was already being undermined. Mr Lawrie said a public meeting should be held.

And Ian Hunter, who was instrumental in the development of the Centre echoed Mr Lawrie’s sentiments.

He said: ”I was the first chair of the Older People’s Forum, who pushed for that hall and really wanted to have it.

”Then Aberdeenshire Council took over and minimised the input of the community. To be honest, Aberdeenshire with its policies murdered it.”

Mr Hunter added: ”The possibility is there, we just have to get it going again.”

Feature image – community councillor David Lawman

Vaccination Clinic Moving to Town Hall on Monday

Front of Town Hall in light of setting sun

From Aberdeenshire Health & Social Care Partnership

As you know the Kincardine & Mearns Vaccination Clinic has been located at the Stonehaven Leisure Centre since January of this year. With the support of Live Life Aberdeenshire this clinic has been running like clockwork in a great location, however due to work which is currently taking place on the sports hall roof we have had to take the decision to move the clinic to the Stonehaven Town Hall in the short term.


Initially it was thought that the work would not significantly impact on the operation of the clinic, however it has become clear that it does and that it is untenable to continue to use the facility. The noise of the works is exceptionally loud in the hall where the vaccinations are taking place and the work is also disturbing dust and debris in the rafters which then fall on the clinical area.


The contractors are doing all they can to mitigate the impact but there is little that they can do differently whilst still completing the work.

Vaccination clinic at Town Hall to ‘go live’ on Monday


The decision has had to be taken very quickly and our vaccination team has been working hard to ensure a smooth transition to the new, temporary, venue at the Stonehaven Town Hall.

We plan to ‘go live’ on Monday 14th June.


We are in the process of contacting all of the local groups that currently use the Town Hall and will offer them, where we can, alternative accommodation. We anticipate that we will need to use the Town Hall until at least August.

Parking: There is paid for parking available in the Market Square and there is plenty of free on-street parking close by, including a disabled space close to the front door. There is also extra parking available at Baird Park and there are still spaces available at the Leisure Centre car park.


Unfortunately, due to the fact that all appointment letters are issued by the national system we will not be in a position to contact the people that have appointments scheduled for the week ahead at the Leisure Centre.

Books on Legs

Row of books on library shelf

From Paddy Coffield of Stonehaven and District Community Council –

Stonehaven Library and South Day Services have launched a new service called ‘Books on Legs’ with the aim of delivering library books to people who are stuck at home and unable to get to the library themselves. 

More information can be provided by calling the library helpline on 01467 532929 (9am to 5pm Monday to Friday)

Second Aberdeenshire-wide survey to seek views on the impact of Covid-19

a section of the stones

From Aberdeenshire Council communications team –

The second phase of a survey looking at the impact of Covid-19 on Aberdeenshire communities is now underway.

Views are being sought on the effects of the pandemic over the past six months – a period that saw the country move into a second lockdown and more recently the introduction of a ‘levels’ system of restrictions.

The feedback will form part of a ‘community impact assessment’ to help the council and community planning partners gain a better understanding of the many different experiences of people across Aberdeenshire.

The first survey, conducted in August last year, saw people comment on how Covid-19 had affected their jobs, education and safety in their communities since the lockdown in March 2020, as well as sharing details of their lifestyle, fitness habits and wellbeing.

This second phase of the study will enable further understanding of the ongoing impact and any new or emerging issues, new challenges, and changes to individual and community priorities.

Leader of Aberdeenshire Council Cllr Andy Kille said: “The first survey gave us a good impression of the early impacts of Covid-19 on our communities, and as we continue to live through the pandemic it is important that we look at the ongoing effects.

“So much has changed over the last few months, and we are keen to learn how people have adjusted, and continue to adjust, to the changing circumstances. In particular, we’re keen to hear from a greater percentage of men, our younger residents, and those who have settled in Aberdeenshire from other parts of the UK and abroad.”

Deputy Leader Cllr Peter Argyle said: “The more information we can gather will give us a better picture of how individual communities have been impacted, so I would encourage everybody to share their thoughts over the coming month.

“With the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine and the gradual reduction of restrictions things are looking more positive but we want to build a complete picture of how people have been affected at each stage of the pandemic.”

The survey can be found at https://engage.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/cia and is open until Monday, July 5. The survey should take between 15 and 20 minutes to complete.

As well as the survey itself, there be discussions involving local groups such as community councils, business/traders associations, charitable organisations and resilience groups, as well as others.

Those seeking additional information, or for a copy of the survey in a different format, should email customer.services@aberdeenshire.gov.uk or call 03456 08 12 08.

Plans Pulled for Carron Bank Development

AT Tuesday night’s meeting of Stonehaven and District Council, members heard that proposals for a new home and community / leisure amenities at Riverside Drive had been put on hold.

David Morrison had been seeking planning permission in principle for his proposals. It is understood he has withdrawn his application in order to make an improved submission in light of comments received.

Previously in The Bellman

Suggest, Consider then Vote on a Big Leisure Spend for Stonehaven

image of leisure centre from covered picnic area in front

A PUBLIC vote this September will decide how Live Life Aberdeenshire, LLA, should invest £1.8 million in sports and leisure facilities for Stonehaven.

The voting options will emerge from an idea-generating consultation process known as participatory budgeting.

At last night’s meeting of Stonehaven and District Community Council, LLA team leader Claire Thomson said she was very excited to talk about the participatory budgeting project. She said it was an inclusive process, and one she hoped would engage with people who may not normally participate in this kind of exercise.

‘’It is by the community for the community,’’ she said.

We vote in September – LLA deliver by March 2023

Using a short Powerpoint presentation, Ms Thomson outlined the steps leading to this autumn’s online vote – awareness campaigns, information gathering and visualised designs of options before the September vote. This will be followed by a feedback report that should be presented by November – and LLA want to deliver the chosen project by March 2023.

Meanwhile two members of SDCC, Dawn Black and Mike Duncan, will join a ‘reference group’ of key stakeholders. As well as representing the community in the process, this group should help promote a conversation in the wider community.

How far will £1.8 million go? Could other funding sources be used?

Our community councillors heard that LLA recognized Stonehaven has been under-resourced in terms of leisure offering.

And service manager John Cornfield said LLA had their own ideas as to how the the £1.8 million could be spent – a poolside café and additional gym for the leisure centre for example.

But Mr Cornfield said he hoped the community could make their own proposals and even tap into other funding sources.

‘’We want to excite other groups to come forward with other ideas and leverage funding that Aberdeenshire Council can’t reach,’’ he said.

Motorhome and Windfarm Updates for Area Committee

Nose to tail motor homes on beach front

AT this morning’s meeting of the Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee, councillors were presented with a report updating them on various matters by area manager Bruce Stewart.

The paper appears to be a new feature for the Area Committee in an effort to keep members aware of the progress of matters which have been deferred.

Motor home parking at sea front

One item of interest to Stonehaven residents is a request the committee made to the director of infrastructure services back in April 2019 – for a traffic management review of the Beach Road/Beachfront area used for motorhome parking. Councillors asked that the review would consider all known issues in Stonehaven and that a public consultation be undertaken.

Speaking at today’s meeting, Mr Stewart said officers and a budget had been identified for the review. Mr Stewart said he would very likely chair the steering group and, that after their first meeting, would be able to confirm timescales for the engagement exercise that will take place.

Wind farm site visit

Meanwhile a date has been set for a site visit to the Craigneil Windfarm proposed by Ireland’s part state-owned electricity utility company ESB, who are seeking permission for 11 turbines at land approximately 6.5km to the north west of Stonehaven and 11km south east of Banchory.

The windfarm has been championed by Stonehaven and District community councillor Jim Stephen, who is also chairman of the Stonehaven Town Partnership. Mr Stephen spoke at an SDCC meeting highlighting the £5.28 million community fund the farm would generate over its 30-year life time. This money would be shared with two other community council areas – North Kincardine Rural and Crathes, Drumoak and Durris.

The site visit is to take place on Tuesday 22 June for a report to Area Committee on 29 June.

Grateful for updates

Councillor Dennis Robertson thanked Mr Stewart for his report.

He said: ”I think this is a welcomed inclusion to our meetings and I thank Mr Stewart for it – it is very informative.”

Previously in The Bellman

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