Category Archives: Social

Merchiston Team Points Match

Our forces were marshaled for the annual campaign against our friends from Merchiston on Sunday evening (28 Jan).  the troops making up our battalion were Craig Brown, Dave Carr, Reg Dunbar, Ken Hunter, John Jacobs, Alex Moir, Jim Ramsay, and Iain Scott.

After the smoke had cleared from the opening salvos (Striking), our artillerymen had failed to established their customary dominance.  Worse was to come with the encounters on difficult terrain in trying to seize the initiative at Inwicking; our opponents had succeeded in establishing the forward area and a 6 point lead.  Our men came back at them to recover some of the lost ground by gaining 4 points at the Draw, only to be thrust back by a counter attack at Guarding.  Merchiston took the initiative at Chap & Lie, to increase their overall lead.  A rally by the Penicuik men at Raising  give some hope that the day could be saved, but alas it was not to be and our worthy opponents left the field of battle with a 121-114 victory.

The two teams joined together for a refreshment in the bar and to view the results of past encounters.   The Merchiston President Avril Anderson was presented with the trophy and her team congratulated on their fine win.

Top scorers for Merchiston were John Addinall (22), David Cunningham (22), and Avril Anderson (19), the top scorers for Penicuik were Jim Ramsay (20), Ken Hunter (19), and John Jacobs (16).  


Penicuik CC in Lausanne

Following our final game in the International Gathering in March this year, some of us were having a chat over a beer with the guys from Curling Lausanne Olympique. Bernard, Alex, Dominic and Urs had competed in the Gathering seven times, and they suggested it was about time that the Scots reciprocated and made a visit to Switzerland. They explained that Lausanne held a competition in November each year, the “Memorial Charles Schenkel”, so after a few more beers, the Ramsays, Andersons, Carrs and Hopes were committed to the cause.

We flew from Edinburgh to Geneva very early on Friday 10th November and after a short delay, whilst we waited for Mrs Carr to be released from custody by Swiss Customs, we were met by Bernard, Dominic and Urs who very kindly drove us to our hotel in Lausanne. The remainder of Friday was spent site-seeing around the city and consuming a few libations, the standard procedure for honed athletes preparing for serious competition. (Note: G+T’s approx £14 a pop!).

The Lausanne Curling Hall is located in a fabulous position directly on the shore of Lake Geneva, one of the largest lakes in western Europe. The 5-sheet curling hall is on the second floor of the building and, incredibly, the walls on two sides are glazed from floor to ceiling, offering wonderful views over the harbour and the lake to the snow-capped Alps in the distance.

Twenty teams entered the competition, which was divided into two sections of ten teams in each.  Penicuik 1, (Andersons and Hopes), kicked off in Section 1 at 8.00 a.m. on Saturday followed by Penicuik 2, (Ramsays and Carrs), in Section 2 at 10.00 a.m. The Lausanne President, Beatrice Meier, welcomed everyone to Lausanne and gave a special, warm welcome to the Penicuik Club members for making their way to Switzerland. She explained that the originator of the Schenkel system for curling was her grandfather, Charles Schenkel, and the competition was in his memory.

All teams played three games on Saturday and, following a Schenkel calculation of the results, two new sections were created for the Sunday session; unfortunately both Penicuik rinks ended up in Section 2.  Sunday’s play involved two games and not surprisingly, having enjoyed a particularly ‘sociable’ Saturday evening, the Penicuik rinks played each other for bottom spot in the final game! No matter, our hosts were extremely good company and fun was the order of the day. Every rink we played were incredibly friendly and every rink won a prize! Our own president, Chris, thanked Beatrice and the curlers of Lausanne for their generous hospitality, and encouraged them to make the trip to Edinburgh for the International Curlers Gathering at some time in the future.

Following the presentation of prizes we spent an interesting half hour being hugely entertained by the jovial Lausanne iceman, Uli Sommer.  Uli knows Scotland, it’s international curlers, and it’s characters well and, as well as being a very good curler and international referee, he enjoys a dram so he fitted well in to the Penicuik company.

On Sunday evening, the Penicuik party were picked up at their hotel by Bernard and his wife Elaine, Urs and his wife Sylvia, Alex, and Dominic, and transported to the Restaurant Le Chalet Suisse, where we had lots of fondue, cherries in kirsch, ice cream, and Swiss wine; a wonderful way to finish a great weekend with very good friends.

Over the years, rinks from Penicuik Curling Club have flown the flag in Latvia, Denmark, Sweden, and Switzerland (outdoors). We can now add Switzerland (indoors) to that list. Each time, new friendships are born and old friendships renewed. Each time, the brother and sisterhood of curling never ceases to amaze those involved. This time was no exception and we thank the members of Curling Lausanne Olympique for making us so welcome.

Ronnie Hope

(A selection of photographs can be viewed on the Gallery page)

Edinburgh International Curlers’ Gathering 2017

The Gathering took place over the last weekend of March and fourteen local sides were joined by fourteen overseas teams for a 3-day fun curling tournament.  Eight of the visiting teams were new to the event and came from France, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the USA.

Penicuik fielded teams drawn from a squad of Dave Carr, Dave Anderson, Andrew Lambie, Jim Ramsay,Liz Anderson, Pam Ramsay, Barbara Gillespie, Jean Lennie, Roger Scott, and David Gillespie.  Wins against Alba and The Queens (Sweden), and a loss to Lyss City 1 (Switzerland) in the preliminary stage meant Penicuik played in Group C in the final stage.  Here they lost to O’Neil (USA), Curlingstones (Switzerland), and Lyss City 2 (Switzerland).

The Roaring Stones (aka Murray Hope, Iain Scott, John Jacobs, Robert Beaton, and Ronnie Hope) played in a very strong group in the preliminary stage losing to Paddy Power, The Maple Rocks (Canada), and Torsten Med Borsten (Sweden).  Happily they went on to gain a victory against Easy Curlers (Switzerland) in the final group stage. 

Some of the Organising Team

A number of members banded together to form the Organising Team for the Gathering.  Jim R was Transport Manager and MC, Linda Hunter is the Treasurer and Competition Score,  Janette Lambie and Barbara Gillespie manned the Registration Desk, and Christine Hope and Pam Ramsay ran the fund raising activities.  The whole team readily took on additional duties throughout the weekend.   A big than you to all of them, and to the volunteers who delivered Jim’s transport plan for airport transfers.

The Winning Teams this year were;

Group A         Paddy Power

Group B        All Mixed Up

Group C        O’Neil (USA)

Group D       Lyss City 1 (Switzerland)

Group E        Balfron Wolves

Group F        Kelso Reivers

Group G       Midcalder

The Friendship Quaich was awarded jointly to the two USA teams (O’Neil and Mulville) from St Paul, Minnesota, who made a great contribution to the event both on and off the ice.

Closing Bonspiel

The final ice of the season on Wednesday 29 March was devoted to the Closing Bonspiel.  Eight teams vied for supremacy and the last opportunity to claim a medal.  The format was six single ended games; and in the absence of visible scores it was difficult to understand how the event was progressing for those of us on the balcony.  Afterwards all was revealed; the ‘Foundation Team’ was Jim Ramsay, Janette Lambie, Linda Hunter, and Margaret Dalgleish on -12.  The winners were Iain Scott, Keith Morris, Barbara Gillespie, and Pauli Holmes on +10, so congratulations to them.

Members shared a meal and refreshments afterwards in the ECC Club Rooms.

A happy bunch of wooden spoonists.

Bonspiel winners, Iain Scott, Keith Morris, Barbara Gillespie, and Pauli Holmes







West Linton Challenge Match 2017

The annual match between Penicuik and West Linton was played on Friday 27th January.  As usual it was a competitive but friendly encounter.

Dave Carr, Andrew Lambie, Margaret Carr and Janette Lambie played against Shone Watt, Barbara Watt, Chris McDonald and Ray Edwards; with Liz Anderson, Ronnie Hope, Pam Ramsay and Christine Hope taking on John Dykes, Sandy Anderson, Jan Murray and Mhairi McDonald.
In the first game Penicuik built up a good lead of 6-0. The front end playing very well, leaving the Third and Skip to play guards. West Linton came back with a 3 at the sixth end.
The second game was closer, with ones and a two being exchanged to give West Linton a 5-2 lead after 6 ends.  

So it was all on the last end of the two games!!!  Liz won a single  to make the final score 5-3 in favour of West Linton.  In the other game, Shona was half an inch short with her draw attempt so Dave Carr did not have to play his last shot in gaining a 7-3 win, giving Penicuik overall victory in the match by 10 shots to 8.

We all adjourned upstairs for very pleasant chat and refreshments. Last year’s winner, Jan Murray, presented the glass trophy to Dave Carr.

Dave Carr

Social Fixtures

The Club played three games against invited opposition on Friday 20 January.

Penicuik v Partick

This game was played in excellent spirit with Dave Anderson, Liz Anderson, Peter Occleston and Pam Ramsay pitted against the Partick Vice-President Robbie Wishart (Liz’s cousin), Duncan McColl, Heather Parton and May Morris.  On Robbie’s suggestion we decided to rotate the rinks after each 2 ends which added much to the enjoyment of the evening.  It was clear from the start that this was not going to be an easy game as the Partick front end found their weight from the off and we needed to be on our mettle to keep the score to 1 shot to Partick. The second, third and fourth ends were equally competitive which went with the hammer with singles scored at each end. Following a good hit and roll from Peter we managed a shot against the hammer in the fifth but Partick came back with a single in the sixth. Penicuik managed a few good draws and following an unfortunate last stone from Partick whilst we were lying four shots up we managed through a changing hand to push their stone out to finish with a six, a result (9-3) which did not reflect the game.  Many thanks to the members of Partick Curling Club for an excellent evening of good curling and good fun.

Dave Anderson

Penicuik v SIAE

Penicuik Team 3 (Iain Scott, Roger Scott, Dave Carr and Vic Ramage) played against SIAE (Mike Vetch, Maureen McCulloch, Morna Findlay and David Cunningham).
With Vic getting his weight very quickly, Penicuik got off to a good start with a single followed by a 4. On the 3rd end, the SIAE skip was unlucky and took out their stone to give Penicuik a 6. This really ended the contest and the remaining ends were split evenly with Penicuik winning 14-3. All players were ready to play their stones and so play was continuous and we easily managed to play 8 ends. 8 ends used to be common, so it shows that it can still be done.
After the game, we adjourned upstairs for pleasant conversation and refreshments.

Dave Carr

Penicuik v Inverkeithing

Penicuik Team 2 (John Jacobs, Ronnie Hope, Reg Dunbar and Alister McDonald) played against Inverkeithing CC (Robert Smith, Collin Blyth, Phil Slater and Nigel Patterson).

A very good natured and competitive game with Phil and his team ended with a win (10-6) for Inverkeithing CC.  From the first end, Inverkeithing played a fairly aggressive hitting game from lead through to skip, missing very little!  Penicuik struggled with straight ice over the first couple of ends before fighting back to make a good contest going into last end; where the hitting game from Inverkeithing prevailed again, with some exciting difficult take out shots undoing the excellent play from the front end of Penicuik.

Afterwards we had a really enjoyable discussion about the game and the merits of Murrayfield Curling Rink.  They were all extremely happy, and also praised the standard of ice at Kinross where they play majority of their games now.  We agreed and shared our experiences of our recent Away Day there.

John Jacobs

New Year Walk

On a reasonably good (for January) Tuesday morning, a group (22) of members collected together at the Lowries Den entrance to the Penicuik House Estate ready to embark on a walk around the estate to the various ponds that have featured as home ice for the club over the years. This happy bunch were firstly led down to the High Pond which they were able to circumnavigate, with the kind permission of Sir Robert Clerk.  Thereafter the route took the party down towards the Low Pond before striking off over the hill to reach Hurley Pond.  From Hurley it was back to the Low Pond and the Curling House (Pavilion) where members were refreshed with mulled wine and ‘rusty nails’  whilst being offered warm mince pies and other delicacies.  After having been regaled with many stories and facts  from our own historian Jim Cowper, the party followed his suggestion of a return via the Roman bridge and up the hill to the old Penicuik House.

A really nice get together before the club commences the second half of it’s programme.  A special vote of thanks goes to Vice President Christine Hope and her helpers for their preparations.

Some photographs appear on the Social Page; if you have any good photos send them in!