A Letter from the Chairman

Adapted from the Letter in Standfast Magazine Issue MK56  December 2020
Fiona at Duthil Drinks Party
Fiona at the Duthil Drinks Party

Dear Fellow Members

What a strange and challenging year 2020 has been to put it mildly.  There we were, busily getting our acts in gear to prepare for our planned International in August, when suddenly it all went pear shaped and we had to cancel everything.  It has been most disappointing as we were so looking forward to all the events and it would have been a lot of fun to see so many of you all.  Heyho.  I am sure you will have had to adapt in so many ways in what you can and cannot do, which has often been most frustrating, but there you go. It does, however, seem as though some sort of progress is being made with vaccines and our medics have learned a great deal about how to treat people, which should help.  Some of my family members had the virus, but I am glad to say that they have all made a full recovery – I do hope that if any of you have been in the same situation that you and yours are fit and well.

So where are we now after all this ….

Tim Atkinson, Parade Marshal, has carried on with Instagram and set up a Facebook page, which you may have cottoned on to and Andy Grant has been keeping an eye on our finances. Judy, our revered Tent Organiser, has decided to pass her baton on, and we have been lucky enough to recruit Jill Standing to take her place. We are so grateful to Judy who did such a lot for the Clan over so many years.  The 2010 International was a triumph thanks to her hard work and amazing organizational skills. However, she has promised that she will still be very much around.

Although we could not meet with you all this year, Tim, my sister Maria Teresa and I got together with the Chief and Judy at Duthil Kirk in July.  Tim and Miles celebrated the actual date by ascending Craigellachie to mark what should have been the International Games Day, so we were thinking of you all.

The research room is now up and running at the Grantown Museum with the computer that we donated, and we are most grateful to Steve Goodall for all his hard work in setting this up. I hope it is not too long before some of you can make use of this.

Sir Patrick is still working on plans for Duthil and should be ready soon to reveal all. I know he is keeping us in suspense, but I’m sure the wait will be worth it in the long run.

As I hinted before in my brief Newsletter to you in July this year, we have been looking at other options for keeping the spirit of the Clan alive while we are still unsure about any future gatherings. Suggestions include ‘virtual tours` of places of interest to the clan, photos or short videos of our own and overseas clan celebrations, drone footage of Strathspey, a walk around Duthil with commentary, maybe a visit to Grantown Museum with their permission?

We also thought that it would be lovely to include music by the young people of the Monadh Ruadh band who have played so beautifully for us at two of our gatherings. Anyway – we look forward very much to suggestions from you!

It just remains for me to say: A very Happy Christmas and a Brighter, more normal New Year to YOU ALL!!!

Or  - Nollaig chridheil agus Bliadhna mhath ùr!