Once again a large crowd gathered at the harbour to hear the “Chaiple” bell ring in the New Year. 14 well-clad members of the Bowling Club turned out to play six ends before returning to the warmth of the clubroom. A short and informal Celebration of the Sacrament of Holy Communion was held in Johnshaven Church. Ian Gray from Montrose was the Guild’s first speaker of 2011. Mrs Chris Alexander was elected the new Chairperson of the Village Hall committee. After several breaks because of inclement weather towards the end of 2010 all the local organisations were glad to get back into harness. The annual Firework Spectacular lit up the harbour and brought a sparkle to the January blues. SHARK reported a very successful year at their AGM: Rebecca Chambers was elected Chairperson. Johnshaven Athletic ended a two month lay-off with a 3-1 away victory against Highland Hotel.
Blair Dunbar and Dylan Marwick were the winners of the Primary School’s K’nex Challenge. Benholm and Johnshaven became part of the Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee’s designated regeneration priority area. The management committee of the Horticultural Society were very satisfied with the numbers who went along to the Village Hall to order seeds and enjoy a cup of tea. Residents of Fore Street were delighted to hear that further measures would soon be taken to deal with coastal erosion in front of their houses. The Community Council granted £100 to the Johnshaven Community Café Group. The Guides and Brownies held their annual Thinking Day service in Johnshaven Church. The Primary School’s badminton team won the Small School’s Shield at the annual tournament at Mackie Academy: P1-4 class visited the R.R.S. Discovery in Dundee. A very busy year was reported at the AGM of the Wairds Park committee which closed the season with cash assets of £16,177. Donald Marr was installed as RWM of Lodge St John No 119 for 2010-11, William Williamson, Secretary and Stewart Morrice, Treasurer.
President, Alan Robbie, reported an active year at the AGM of the Bowling Club, the highlight being the retention of the TSB Trophy. The treasured and historic Chapel of Ease was ravaged and almost completely gutted by a devastating fire. The Community Council was disappointed to hear that, because of Council cuts, the village would not have a street orderly in 2011. SHARK received an award of £2,900 from the Tullo Wind Farm Community Fund to help them achieve their environmental objectives. The Guild’s table top sale raised £255 for their Project. Lathallan School S5 pupil and Benholm resident, James Webster, was awarded a prestigious Nuffield Science Scholarship. Peterkin Homes won the Scottish title for Best New Homes for a two-storey house which the firm built in Waughton Place. Primary School Head Teacher, Jackie Fernandez, was in the stocks at the Primary School’s open day to face wet sponges thrown by her pupils to help raise £300. Three new members were admitted to Mearns Coastal Parish Church Kirk Session.
Pupils of the Primary School enjoyed a trip to the Nordic Outdoor Ski Centre at Huntly and ended the term with a service in Johnshaven Church. Clark Simpson won the carpet bowling open singles event, Bett Beedie the ladies singles and Clark Simpson and Gordon McCombie the pairs: Pat Wisbey and Bett Beedie won the Christmas goblets, postponed from December. First Minister, Alex Salmond, visited the village prior to the election campaign for the Scottish parliament. Wairds Park opened for the new season with Jenny Beedie as Warden and Lynne McBay as her assistant. Easter services were held in both Johnshaven and St Cyrus Churches. At the AGM of the Community Council, Acting Chair, Don Marr, reported that a number of recurring agenda items had been completed during the past year including the provision of a fingerpost sign at the harbour and the completion of the rock armour defences along Fore Street. There was almost a full turnout of members at the opening of the bowling green. The Primary School girls football team won the annual GlaxoSmithKline tournament at Links Park. A small group of enthusiasts spruced up a number of untidy parts of the village. A street party was held in Mid Street to celebrate the royal wedding: the Primary School held their own mock wedding. Margaret Farmer received gifts to mark her 25 years service as Cleaning Supervisor at Lathallan School. A presentation was made to Keith Jones who retired as chairman of the Mill of Benholm Trust.
The Primary School was praised by government inspectors after receiving pass marks in a recent inspection: pupil Phoebe Griffiths joined a number of youngsters from other schools to enjoy the unique opportunity of working with members of the Royal National Scottish Orchestra when they visited Lathallan School. Gracie Clark was the winner of the first prize of a £50 gift voucher in the Horticultural Society’s spring garden competition: the annual plant sale raised £434. The RNLI’s plant sale in the Village Hall raised £895. A concert in the Village Hall featuring the Guides and Brownies and the pupils of the Primary school raised £176 for Christian Aid. The Games Club’s presentation of trophies and prize bingo night raised £123. The Bowling Club’s Kincardineshire League campaign got off to a good start when three points were won against Portlethen BC. Johnshaven Athletic won promotion back to Division One of the Aberdeenshire League after defeating Burghmuir 1-0 away from home. The first prize bingo session of the season at Wairds Park raised £95 for the Carpet Bowling Fund. Mearns Coastal’s plant sale in St Cyrus Public Hall raised £319. Katy Townsend was a member of the Aberdeenshire junior badminton team which won the Primary Inter-Area Triangular at Portlethen.
SHARK received an award of £8,400 from the National Lottery “Awards For All” scheme. The winner of the first putting competition of the summer for the Barclay Harvey Shield was Alison Beedie. Kevin Dunbar and Doug Beedie completed a six days charity walk along the 96 mile West Highland Way. Work began on installing rock armour along two stretches of the Fore Street coastline. The Primary School girls football team won the triangular tournament at the annual Laurencekirk Rotary event and the Coastal Cup at Johnshaven: the boys were runners-up in their group at Laurencekirk. The 14 year-old wooden and popular fort at Wairds Park was removed and replaced by a £14,000 Playzone Assault Course. The Mill of Benholm was upgraded from two to three stars by Visit Scotland. Seventeen volunteers took part in a beach clean-up from the harbour to the Narrows picking up 1,335 bits of rubbish on the way. Father and son Michael Craig, Snr and Jnr, won the Major L. Kerr Thistle Trophy for family foursomes for the eighth consecutive time at the putting green. Primary 5-7 pupils brought their year to an end with an exciting week at the PGL centre at Dalguise. The Bowling Club raised £93 from a prize bingo session at Wairds Park.