Successful Projects

Duns Christmas Lights

Year Completed: 


Report to Blackhill Windfarm Community Fund

Following receipt of the very generous donation of £10,000 from Blackhill Windfarm Community Fund we spent quite a bit of time looking at the lights on offer.  The money arrived just in time for us to instruct the Council and order lights for Christmas 2013.

We elected to renovate the cross-street features at the Post Office (Nativity Scene) and the Banks in the entrance to the Square.  We also traded-in four features at North Street (outside Plough Inn), South Street (outside Duns News Plus), Murray Street (outside Fortes) and Black Bull Street (outside Black Bull Inn) for new features.  We also bought spare bulbs and additional motifs which were fixed to the Toll House (JD Clark and Allan and Duns Dental Practice).

The replacement lights are all LEDs and use a fraction of the electricity that we used previously. 

We were able to instruct Scottish Borders Council to proceed with the installation of the new power supplies to replace the original supplies that they had cut off (vandalised).  We were obliged to pay 50% of the cost of this.  The terminals installed by the Council are very sensitive, however, and trip at the least little thing.  Consequently our team are regularly seen up ladders at all hours resetting MCBs.  We are talking to the Council about this.

Finally we instructed our honorary electrician, Bob Markby, to build and install 6 No junction boxes for the display which allowed us to plug in the features and the garlands.

In the year 1 Oct 2013 to 30 Sep 2014 we paid the following:

Blachere (lights)                     £ 6,130.73

Delivery Charges                    £    140.00

Bob Markby                            £    586.48

Scottish Borders Council         £ 4,176.65

TOTAL EXPENDITURE              £11,033.86


Our income included donations from private individuals and donations through the Cracker in the Square and this allowed us to run a switch-on evening, purchase additional lights and pay for the collection and delivery of the features.  We still have a small reserve for next years spares.

Without the generous donation from the Blackhill Windfarm Community Fund we would not have been able to erect the cross street features, string garlands around the Square and run the very popular switching on of the lights by the Wynsome Mayde.  The display would have been restricted to the lights on the tree and Duns town centre would have been the poorer for it.

On behalf of the Erection Section and all who have enjoyed the display of Christmas Lights in Duns we would like to thank the Blackhill Windfarm Community Fund Trustees for their generous award.


J Andrew Lester

(Meant to be retired Chairman)

Berwickshire Community Safety Panel

Year Completed: 

WOOFs Campaign

The Grant provided by Blackhill Wind Farm has enabled us to purchase 400,000 bags for the WOOF’s campaign which will provide this service for up to a further 10 months.

I have also provided a brief description on how WOOF’s is impacting the local communities who have signatories.

The WOOF’s campaign is proving hugely successful and the impact into the communities is amazing.  There are presently 14 Community Council areas within the Berwickshire area who have signed their dogs up to this campaign.  This enables us to keep a track on the communities with dogs and try and ensure we keep the areas where the public have access to clean and free from fouling.

With the funding we have received from Blackhill Wind Farm we have ensured that the campaign has supplies for at least another 6 months.  This ensures that over 700 signatories with over 1000 dogs are making more of an effort to clean their pathways, parks etc and the message has been passed onto other dog owners as they enquire about the bags provided (which are very distinctive in colour).

Your generosity to the WOOF’s campaign has been amazing and given us a chance to order the bags needed to continue.  With this ability to continue we can keep the streets, paths, parks etc cleaner and the areas healthier for everyone to use.

Thank you for your support and generosity.


Kym Bannerman

Duns Players

Year Completed: 

The Duns Players applied to you for funding last year to finance some sound and lighting equipment and you kindly gave us.  We listed a number of items we wanted and agreed we would be contributing some of the money ourselves.   We also promised to share this equipment with other local groups.

To date we have spent £2,938 on much better lighting, carrying cases for all the equipment and a range of smaller items like the microphones.

Your grant has enabled us to improve the quality of our own shows.  We have put on Glen Garry Glen Ross an serious American Drama in September last year, Dads Army for armistice day. An Alan Bennett evening toured the village halls this spring and they will be used for our annual comedy shows this spring. 

We have also lent them to the Duns and District Opera for the annual pantomime and for Me and My Girl and Gavinton pantomime in January.  Berwickshire Housing Association borrowed them for their star awards event and they were also put to use a large childrens party.

We are thrilled with what we are now able to do with a much higher specification of equipment and not having to hire it on a regular basis so we want to thank the Fund for enabling this .

Yours Sincerely
Helen Forsyth Secretary Duns Players

Duns Senior Citizens Club

Year Completed: 

Duns Senior Citizens Club holds its social meetings fortnightly in Turnbull Court. There is a syllabus for the session and we have talks, demonstrations etc., also outings and special lunches, all of which are very well attended.

We applied to the Blackhill Windfarm Community Fund for a Grant to help towards funding two of our events, and fortunately we were successful. Needless to say we were delighted. The Grant was very much appreciated, and it enabled members to have ‘that wee bit extra’ something on both these occasions.

  1. The Club’s Christmas Lunch -
    This was held on 13 December 2013, when delicious traditional fayre was provided by a local caterer and served by the Committee (volunteers). The Committee had made up some beautiful Christmas hampers from donations from our members, which were raffled. Then this was followed by entertainment from some Duns Primary School pupils and their teachers. As always the whole afternoon was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone, it brought both young and old together in fun and laughter.
  2. The Club’s Outing –
    This was held on 16 May 2014. Members were taken out for the day on a bus (local operator used), usually it’s to somewhere they can’t easily get to (as some of our members are not so mobile now). This year we went to Dobbie’s, Straiton and then back to Eyemouth Golf Club for our tea, delicious. There was ‘a right buzz throughout’, a change of scenery had given everyone a good lift, so we all went home feeling rather weary, but we all had had a lovely day.

On behalf of the Club, I would again convey our thanks to your Board of Directors, for their positive decision and generosity.

Madge Cran
On behalf of May Kinghorn

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Duns Pipe Band

Year Completed: 

Grant of £2500 received in December 2012

Purpose of Grant: To buy 18 Pipe Bag Covers and 8 Drum Harnesses

Progress: The equipment has been purchased and is now in use in the band. The pipe bag covers were designed in the town colours of black and red so they would be in keeping with the new tartan we have now had designed. The pictures below show one of the bags on a set of pipes and a swatch of the new tartan.

The Drum Harnesses are in use now and are making a huge difference to both the look and the comfort of the drummers, especially the younger ones who struggle more with the weight of the instruments.

Summary: The grant funding from Blackhill Windfarm Community Fund has enabled us to progress not onlywith the purchase of the equipment but also to make headway on the new tartan project . Without
the grant funding we could have been waiting another year or more before we were able to proceed
with the tartan design. On behalf of all members of the band, I would like to thank the Committee for considering our application and awarding the grant.

Mrs J Turner, Secretary

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