Stain glass tribute to Queensferry’s much loved minister

By Shaun Milne

A CHURCH congregation which raised more than £16,000 in a heartfelt tribute to remember its former Minister unveiled a memorial window to him at a special service on Sunday.

John Carrie, 64, who was minister of Queensferry Parish Church for 37 years, passed away suddenly in March 2008 just months before he was due to retire.

Following Mr Carrie’s death, a memorial appeal fund was set up by the congregation which raised over £16,000 towards a stain glass window to be specially commissioned in his memory.


It was designed by artist Roland Mitton and based on Psalm 23, “The Lord’s My Shepherd” and unveiled by his widow Anne in front of a packed congregation.

The fund raising efforts not only paid for the window, but also funded the training of a school teacher in Chogoria, Kenya – reflecting Mr Carrie’s interest in the needs of the Third World.

It is anticipated a further two teachers will be trained with the remaining balance.

Queensferry associate minister Reverend Sean Swindells said: “I worked with Reverend John Carrie for five months before his sudden death. Continue reading

Ewan Williamson memorial unveiled

Linda Williamson in front of the plaque remembering her son Ewan

By Cara Sulieman

A LASTING tribute to remember tragic Scots firefighter Ewan Williamson was unveiled by his mother Linda yesterday (Mon).

The 35-year-old had been with Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service for seven years when he died rescuing people from a blaze at the Balmoral Bar on Dalry Road in Edinburgh last July.

Although around 20 people were evacuated from the building, Ewan tragically lost his life – the first Edinburgh based firefighter to die whilst battling a blaze in living memory.

And now the service has dedicated a lasting tribute to a “wonderful individual” and “courageous firefighter”.

Continue reading

Teacher struck off after gun attack

Allan Dickson leaving court in March 2009

By Cara Sulieman

A GUN-WIELDING teacher has been struck off after firing an air rifle at a teenager to frighten off a gang he claimed had attacked him.

Allan Dickson was fined £1,000 after he admitted two firearms offences at Edinburgh Sheriff Court in March last year.

Dickson, 33, was suspended by Midlothian Council following the incident which he said was “totally out of character”.

And today (Tuesday) the Disciplinary Sub-Committee of the General Teaching Council (GTC) struck him off for at least a year after deciding he was not fit to teach.

Continue reading

Pastor Praises Gordon Brown in home town

By Andrea McCallum

A CHURCH leader from Gordon Brown’s home town has taken out an advert in his local paper to support the under-pressure PM in the upcoming election.

Reverend Joe Nwokoye insists the Fife-born Premier is the best candidate for the job.

And Dr Nwokoye – a pastor in Kirkcaldy – hopes to inspire Mr Brown’s home town voters.

Continue reading

Tragic Carol Jarvis laid to rest




The children of Carol Jarvis outside the funeral parlour

The children of Carol Jarvis outside the funeral parlour



By Cara Sulieman

THE family of tragic Carol Jarvis paid tribute to a “loving mother” and “devoted wife” as they laid her to rest today (Friday).

A floral tribute spelling out ‘MUM’ in white carnations lay on the coffin alongside three pictures of Carol – including one of her in her wedding dress – at the Co-operative Funeral Parlour in Livingston, where the thanks-giving service was held.

Almost 100 people gathered to pay their respects to the mother-of-four who was 47 years old when she was found dead in her home in Bathgate on September 16.

Friends and family wept as the minister spoke about her love of Girls Aloud, Daniel O’Donnell and dancing the ‘Jive’.

Continue reading

Scots Prefer Hymns for Funerals

By Cara Sulieman

SCOTS are sticking to tradition and choosing hymns over more popular songs for their funerals.

In the rest of the UK, contemporary songs are the most requested for a loved-one’s funeral.

But in Scotland, over half of the ceremonies are accompanied by hymns rather than classical music or pop songs.

Only 36 per cent of funerals use contemporary tunes, and a measly nine per cent are accompanied by classical music. Continue reading

Residents may soon be receiving mobile calls via God

The London Road Church in Edinburgh may soon be transmitting calls and texts for o2.

The London Road Church in Edinburgh may soon be transmitting calls and texts for o2.

By Cara Sulieman
ANCIENT religion could be connecting with modern-day technology when a mobile phone mast is installed in a church spire.

Mobile phone heavyweights O2 want to turn the 135-year-old Edinburgh church spire into a giant phone transmitter.

They plan to hide the mast inside the very tip of the listed building, and give an undisclosed cash bonus to the church in return.

However, the Church of Scotland has come under fire in the past for allowing masts to be sited on their parishes, amid concerns that high frequency emitters can damage the brain.

But the phone company says the mast is needed to boost locals’ mobile phone signals.

And although the mast failed to get initial building consent, it is still likely to go ahead as councillors agreed in principal to the unusual plans this week.

If the company re-submit the plans without proposing to change the listed building’s stonework, it is likely to get the go-ahead.

Based just yards from the Hibernian football stadium, the Church of Scotland-owned London Road Church was built in 1874.

It now hosts community groups including the local guides, brownies and rainbows.

When the minister of the church, Reverend Sigrid Marten, was asked about the planning application, she admitted she didn’t know anything about it.

The Church of Scotland said the plans were at an exploratory stage and the parish had not yet been informed.

Churches usually receive an annual rent from companies for the phone masts that are placed on their premises, making it a nice little earner for the parish.

A spokesman for the City of Edinburgh Council confirmed that the application had failed because of the building’s listed building status.

They said: “The application included removing louvres from the stonework, which are like vents in the spire. Listed buildings cannot have any original stonework removed or tampered with so the council were unable to grant listed building consent.

“There was no problem with other aspects of the project and full planning permission was theoretically granted. If the application was re-submitted with changes so that the stonework was left as it is then there is every chance it will be granted.”

O2 were unable to comment, but pointed out that previous church applications had been granted elsewhere.