Local lads make national publication

On opening the package containing my current edition of the ‘BB Gazette’, I was delighted to recognise on the cover Larbert BB boys smiling out as they welcomed HRH Earl of Wessex to the Scottish HQ at Carronvale House, Larbert at his visit in July; something mentioned in this column at the time.

Also inside was a picture of the Falkirk Company at its summer trip to Chamonix. Good to see the national BB publication widening its country coverage in picture and articles. If you have any features of interest, I’m happy to forward them.

The Brigade AGM often seems to be a ‘lesser’ event than years ago, perhaps because fewer decisions are made there (?) but one piece of information still emanating from it is the announcement of the annual capitation fees which impacts on every Company and officer. Often too this is reflected in the number of fund-raising events I report on as units struggle to meet ‘their dues’. For 2016/17 these include annual company registration £135; fee per young person £13.25; officers £27; with provisos made for retired officers or any in full time education. Interestingly ‘The maximum fee that any company may pay in respect of young people is £1650’. There seem not too many companies with that number in excess of 100 boys, but there may be a couple approaching that locally, perhaps soon able to claim their ‘discount’! As a former captain, I sometimes shudder at the sums involved or maybe the current trends for enrolment fees per boy per year of a realistic nature as well as weekly charges are now sensible. I suppose it depends on officers knowing their ‘patch’ and gauging the viability of such family outlays.

‘It’s a small world’ as they say. I was seated next to a couple at a hotel in Perth whom it transpired were close friends of John Inglis, who corresponds with me from a similar position in publicising his battalion in Ayr. Have any of you ever been engaged in conversations and discovered the BB in common. I suspect ‘yes’. Let me know.