From Our Files

50 years ago - April 27, 1962

THE Solway River Purification Board, who are seeking new powers to control undesirable discharges into river estuaries say they have to these powers in view of the importance of the tourist industry in the area and the excellence of the fishing on the river. Samples of the tidal water in the area had been taken and it was found that Newton Stewart discharged large volumes of crude sewage into the Cree. The amount from Newton Stewart was 102,000 gallons, which contained everything that crude sewage contains. Mr C P James, river inspector and chief technical officer of the Board, said it was in the interests of the tourist industry to keep the coast line clean.

Mr James Blake, Creetown, the man who some years ago was acclaimed as Scotland’s only town crier, has died at the age of 74. For 33 years he acted as Creetown bellman, having served in the 1914-18 war. As a bellman he had few equals, his fine resonant voice often being heard a mile away and visitors to Creetown often stared in amazement when they met him on his rounds.

THE parks committee of Stranraer Town Council has banned the playing of football in Lady Stewart Park. A local publican, who owns the Sheuchan Arms, only a few yards from the park, had told the committee that deed-of-gift terms were not being observed by the Council in that football was being played.

25 years ago - May 2, 1987

TWO hectares of the RSPB reserve at the Wood of Cree near Newton Stewart was among land destroyed as the fine weather brought with it the return of the forest fire. Local fire services rallied together to cope with an “unusually high demand” placed upon them on Saturday as three fires raged simultaneously. A helicopter with a massive water carrier was placed on stand by. The cause of the fire remains a mystery. The fire broke out a long way from the nature trail which is popular with visitors. Forestry Commission duty fire officer Mike Cheesewright said: “I have come to the conclusion that the fire could not have started on its own.”

BORDER Television were slammed by Stranraer Community Council again on Monday night for their coverage of this end of the region. “They don’t give a monkeys” said one councillor. Although the company had a permanent crew on the Isle of Man which has roughly the same population as Wigtownshire and Kirkcudbright, why could a crew not be based in the region? Some members also showed concern that it was always English football shown on Border.

STRANRAER schoolgirl Fiona Baker, one of Scotland’s best young squash players has been picked to represent her country in the Home International at Hyde, Cheshire this weekend. Fiona, 15, is West of Scotland Schools under 16 and under 19 girls squash champion, having won both titles in Glasgow recently. She qualified for the weekend competition by playing in six open competitions since the beginning of the season in September.