Friday, November 24, 2006

Jacobs Well

The woodland at Jacobs Well (to the left of the bridge in the picture) is now part of the Scottish Woodland Trust, more at

Property for Sale

Delightful, bijou, rural residence.

Traditionally built, timber framed with original features and real fire. Ample parking space, private drive and unbroken views across the Eddleston Valley. Private forest for BBQ's and socialising with the locals.
Edinburgh in 20 mins and the bustling town of Peebles in 10.

City-types with more money than sense welcomed.

Further details: Shyster, Shyster and Conman, Solicitors.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Civic Week

The first full week in August is Coldstream's chance to let go and have some fun. Begun in the 1950's to co-incide with the Festival of Britain, civic week has continued without a break and is the focus for the Band's activities.
The Thursday of the week is Flodden Day, which is rapidly becoming a media event, partly because it is a little interesting and it's a good news story in a quiet time of the year. Nevertheless, we get on the telly and it provides a great chance for rival bloggers to give Castram a good slagging.

On a cold day in November some pictures borrowed from are a reminder of sunnier times.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Positive noises from the AGM with the idea of a monthly all-band practice to ensure that the players who live well away from Coldstream have a fixed point in their diaries when they know they have to attend a practice night. Other good ideas like less hanging around after we've played and more time spent back in Coldstream.

Regular practice nights remain on a Monday in the Primary School.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Flodden Song

Just when you thought it was all over for another year, here comes the Flodden Song, also known as 'Castrum Toon'*.

Words by R. Bell to the tune of 'MacPherson's Rant'

At 12 o'clock on Flodden Day
We leave for yonder battlefield
The Streamer heads three hundred horse
With Standard proud he leads.

O' Castrum Toon, O' Castrum Toon
Ye'll aye be dear tae me
Though I've wandered far o' ower the world
My heart is aye with thee.

Across the bridge and ower the Tweed
The toon we leave behind
It'll no be long before we see
Yon monument sae fine.


The piper plays a lament sae sad
Above the boggy Palinsburn
Where both nations men there they lie
And in peace we will return.


O' Flodden Field, O' Flodden Field
Sae quiet and sae still
There never was such a bloody day
On yonder Branxton Hill.


*Castram is the old name for Coldstream, taken, allegedly, from the Latin 'Castrum' or fort. Hmm.

** Picture courtesy of the Flodden website (

Band membership

Some new players: into the pipe core come Gareth Watson, Scott Martinson and Gavin Horsburgh, whilst the drum core is bolstered by Christopher Browne, Logan Parsons, Colin Leifer and Gemma Martinson. In addition, Frank Mount makes a welcome return to the pipe core.

Out of the band have went: Lucy Bryson, Paul Ford and Orrin Karp.

The band therefore stands as:

Pipe Major: Robert W. Bell
Drum Major: James Bell
Drum Sergeant: Alan Cockburn
Pipe Sergeant: Peter Scott

Duncan Bell, Gavin Horsburgh, Steve Hyslop, John Lauder, Bob Lillie, Frank Mount, Scott Martinson, Stewart Nelson, Gordon Thompson, Gareth Watson.
Hamish Bell, Christopher Browne, Ian Cockburn, Laura Cockburn, James Ditcham, Colin Leifer, Gemma Martinson, Neil Moffat, Suzie Nelson, Logan Parsons, Alec Thomson.
AGM Thomson (Chairman), Bob Lillie (Vice Chairman), Rob Bell (Secretary), Carol Cockburn (Treasurer)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

AGM November 2006

The band will parade as usual on 12th November to lead the ever dwindling band of ex-servicemen and women to the war memorial to join those thoughtful citizens of the town willing to brave the icy-blast to reflect on those that did not return to the town from two world wars and other, smaller and shorter though no less brutal, wars.

Following this, the band will hold its AGM in the Eildon Centre. The continued absence of so many members from practice nights, Monday if you'd forgotten, needs to be adressed so expect some straight talking from PM Bell.

It's becoming an ever harder struggle to keep a band going in this small town. With bugger all to do you'd think we could fill at least one evening a week with something more constructive than hanging around. But, homework seems an issue for the school-age members and the rapid drift of the younger adults to Edinburgh and beyond means retaining trained players is becoming really difficult.

We're not the only band in this predicament, but that makes things no easier to take when there's barely a soul turning up on a Monday night. It's your band, use it know the rest!

On a more cheery note, here's a picture of Castle Stalker in the Heilands.