Helicopter death toll rises to nine

December 2, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

A ninth person is now known to have died when a Police Scotland helicopter plummeted into the Clutha Vaults pub on Glasgow’s riverside on Friday 29 November.

Shortly after midnight, Police Scotland Deputy Chief Constable Rose Fitzpatrick confirmed a further body had been located. She said efforts were ongoing to formally establish the person’s identity.

At that point, the identity of five of the dead had been established and released publicly.

The three who were in the helicopter were: Air Support crew, Constable Tony Collins, 43, Constable Kirsty Nelis, 36 and pilot Captain Dave Traill, 51.

Pilot David Traill died when his helicopter plunged from the sky.

Both Police officers had been commended for bravery in separate incidents.

The fourth person was pub patron, Gary Arthur, 48, from the Paisley area. Samuel McGhee, aged 56, from Glasgow was the fifth victim to be named.

Said DCC Rose Fitzpatrick: ‘This remains an ongoing investigation and search focused on the Clutha Vaults pub. The site is extremely challenging and the efforts of colleagues from the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and Air Accident investigators have been painstaking.  Our thoughts are with all those affected by this tragedy.

‘Our absolute priority has been to locate the bodies of people who were within the pub at the time of the incident and recover them safely. This process takes time, as formal identification procedures have to take place before we can notify relatives and publicly confirm identities.

‘We are doing all we can to support the families of those who have lost loved ones. It is essential that we maintain sensitivity and dignity for the families of the deceased.’

Of the 12 people in hospital with serious injuries, 3 were in intensive care and one was in a specialist  spinal injuries ward.

A Book of Condolence opened in Glasgow City Chambers on Sunday for the public to sign. The Lord Provost, Sadie Docherty, was the first to sign it,  followed by Council Leader Councillor Gordon Matheson, Chief Constable Sir Stephen House and Kenny MacAskill, Cabinet Secretary for Justice.

The Book will be open to members of the public to sign from 8.30am on Monday 2 December 2013.  The City Council has also organised  financial assistance to the victims of the tragedy facing hardship and has offered a venue to a planned benefit concert.

The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay  sent their ‘most heartfelt thoughts and sympathy to the families of those who were lost or injured in this truly shocking helicopter accident.’ They said: ‘Words can seem wholly inadequate in such circumstances. But in offering every possible healing thought to those who survived, we also wanted to pay tribute to the emergency services and their exemplary response. Glasgow has had to endure a tragic episode. But, knowing the city and its people as we do, we have every confidence that it will find the necessary strength to recover.’

Revd DrLaurence A B Whitley, minister of Glasgow Cathedral held a special service on Sunday to remember everyone who had died and everyone connected with the tragedy. ‘Glasgow has the kind of family solidarity that kicks in at times like this,’ he said. ‘People react first with their heart. They run to the incident, not away from it.’  Children from the Cathedral congregation lit a candle for each of the known dead at that time.

Work continued for a third night to extract the helicopter which had impacted in the roof of the pub. Emergency personnel then have to make safe the structure below to continue  the search for other victims.







Chance to sing in Gloria X

April 30, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The West End’s annual feast of choral and organ music – GLORIA – this year celebrates its tenth anniversary. Singers are invited for the choir, assembled especially for the event, which will perform in Glasgow Cathedral on Wednesday 13 June and in Wellington Church on Wednesday 20 June.

The programme of choral music to be sung will include Parry’s great anthem “I was Glad”. This being Jubilee year, Handel’s coronation anthem “ Zadok the Priest” will be included as well as a number of shorter pieces by composers past and present.

Two of the city’s most experienced choral conductors – Ian Anderson and Iain Galbraith – will conduct the concerts in, respectively, the Cathedral and in Wellington Church. The organ will be played at both concerts by Alan Kitchen

All singers interested in rehearsing for these powerful evenings should attend the first rehearsal in Wellington Church on Wednesday 9 May at 7.30 or at the latest, the second rehearsal on Wednesday 16 May at 7.30m in Wellington Church, Southpark Avenue, G12 8 LE.

Lentfest and Holy Week events

March 3, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The wonderful selection of events and art works for Lentfest are underway. Check the website www.lentfest.co.uk

One of the highlights will be on  Wednesday 7 March at 7.30pm in the University of Glasgow Memorial Chapel when James MacMillan, Scottish composer, will introduce his own work ‘Why is this night different?’  It is centred around the Passover inspired String Quartet No 2 and will be played by St Patrick’s Ensemble.

There are also talks, exhibitions and the launch of the play by Stephen Callaghan, The Martyrdom of Saint John Ogilvie. This will tour almost a dozen community church halls starting on Saturday 10 March at 7.30pm in Glasgow University Memorial Chapel and finishing on Saturday 31 March at St Aloysius Church in Garnethill. It will be performed by people from across the Archdiocese of Glasgow as AGAP Community Theatre.

During Holy Week Glasgow Cathedral in Castle Street G4, will be the venue for three important works. On Monday 2 April the Great Passiontide Works for Organ – Bach, Brahms, Liszt and Reubke – will be played by Iain Simcock.  On Tuesday 3 April he will direct the Choir of Glasgow Cathedral in Miserere (Allegri, Charpentier, Victoria, Brahms, Bruckner, Poulenc). On Wednesday 4 April, Iain will lead Lecons de tenebres by Francois Couperin with Morgane Collomb, soprano, Laura Jarrell, soprano and Alexandre Ducene, Viole de gambe.


watchnight worship

December 22, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

The Christmas eve watchnight service at Glasgow Cathedral starts at 11.15pm on Saturday 24 December and should finish around 12.15am.

The Christmas Morning Service will start at 11am and includes Communion. The watchnight service on Hogmanay – Saturday 31 December – starts at 11pm.


Glorious invite

April 18, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Singers who want to be part of the West End Festival’s musical extravaganza, Gloria IX, are invited to join the rehearsals starting on Thursday 5 May – voting day!

In its ninth year, Gloria will be performed in Glasgow Cathedral on Thursday 16 June and in Wellington Church, University Avenue, on Thursday 23 June.

‘We welcome as many choir singers as possible,’ said Alan Kitchen who will accompany the choir on the organ and who has provided three brand new hymn arrangements for choir, organ and percussion. ‘They can take part in either or both concerts and should be able to attend at least MOST of the rehearsals.’

Organ solos will be provided by local organists Malcolm Sim and Jonathan Salmond.

Directed by Ian Anderson, the choir will explore five centuries of choral music. The programme will range from 16th century masters such as Byrd and Tallis, through Bach, Handel, Mozart and Haydn and via 19th century masters Mendelssohn and Stanford into 20th century music by John Rutter and Bob Chilcott.

Rehearsals will be held in Wellington Church starting at 7.45pm on Thursdays 5, 12,19 and 26 May and 2 and 9 June as well as final rehearsals in both venue.

Interested audiences are invited to rehearsals as well as the concerts where ‘audience participation’ is promised on the night. Contact:Alan Kitchen via Wellington Church email:wellingtonchurch@btinternet.com or Tel: 0141 339 0454. ‘Or simply turn up at the first rehearsal on Thursday 5 May,’ said Alan.

Older jurors accepted

January 13, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

The age limit for jurors in Scotland – set at 60 in 1825  and raised to 65 in 1980 – has been removed.

Reacting to the change which takes effect from 10 January 2011, Age Scotland’s Chief Executive David Manion said: ‘We heartily welcome this move which shows just how Scotland values the life skills and experience of its older citizens. Over the last 21 years, since 65 was set as the upper limit, Scots are increasingly living longer and leading active lives long after retirement.’

Another agency which welcomes the change,  is Glasgow Old People’s Welfare Association (GOPWA).  The organisation is, itself about to celebrate 63 years of service to senior citizens with an ecumenical service at Glasgow Cathedral on Wednesday 23 February for which there is always a full house with people of all faiths attending.

Throughout the winter,  staff of GOPWA continue to ensure that all service users are ok and that they have food and hot meals to see them through the bad weather.

Proud Director Sheena Glass, expressed  a massive ‘thank you’  to everyone involved with GOPWA.

She said that three social welfare officers make sure pensioners across  Glasgow are aware of their rights. In most cases the officers  can double a pensioner’s income – as a lot of older people are not aware of what they are entitled to. Office staff are able to help older people over the telephone by just being there and being ready to listen.

In addition, almost 2000 volunteers run clubs which welcome seniors. For some people it is the only social contact they may have in a week. The day centres are loved by all who attend and the care received is praised. Centres  are also the key place for seniors to contact in any emergency- especially if it occurs at a weekend.

Said Sheena: ‘We had donations of Christmas presents from Glasgow Inner Wheel, food parcels from Percy Bilton Charity and boxes of food from the pupils of Hillhead High School. All of those gifts were delivered with a Christmas card. For some this would have been the only card they receive.’ She added: ‘Every client is a friend,  cared for and loved by all the staff and volunteers. Nor do we stop at Glasgow.  We never refuse to help anyone who asks.’

Glasgow Old People’s Welfare Association can be contacted on: 0141 221 9924

City celebrates St Mungo in style

January 6, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Dancers Brian McIntyre and Nicola Gilmour will perform at St Enoch Centre this week for the St Mungo Festival.

Dancers Brian McIntyre and Nicola Gilmour will perform at St Enoch Centre this week for the St Mungo Festival.

A festival of events reflecting the vibrancy of  Glasgow’s medieval life, launches on Saturday 8 January in St Andrew’s in the Square with a multi cultural gala concert ‘St Mungo’s Bairns’.

Jeely Piece song writer Adam McNaughton,  Irish ceili band Four Provinces, West African Drummers AKAYA, Gaelic singer Maggie MacInnes, Neilston and District Pipe Band and the pan-African group Glasgow Highlife Band,  will all take part that evening.

Organised by Glasgow City Council and Historic Glasgow, the St Mungo’s Festival runs till Sunday 16 January and celebrates the life of Glasgow’s Patron Saint who is also known as St Kentigern. Full details are at www.stmungofestival.com

The saint’s  mother was St Thenew a name which has evolved into St Enoch so the St Enoch Shopping Centre has happily supported the Festival.  Said Susan Nicol, General Manager of the Centre: ‘The St Mungo Festival is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate Glasgow. We are delighted to be a part of this important event,  supporting the community and the city’s rich heritage.’ Dance company Visual Statement will perform a specially commissioned ballet ‘The Tree’ to tell another part of the story of Glasgow’s Coat of Arms which incorporates a tree, a bird, a bell and a gold ring. Their performances can be seen at St Enoch Centre on Friday 14 January at 12.30pm and Saturday 15 January at 12.30pm. The Centre and the Mitchell Library will also host an exhibition of some of the city’s medieval treasures.

Among other Festival highlights are an ecumenical service at Glasgow Cathedral, Mungo’s Nature Pilgrimage to visit places the Saint would have seen and, for the the first time, the Molendiner Awards. To be made annually from this year, the awards will support the work schools are doing to use history and recognition of the past to link with the local and wider community today.

Included in the Festival is the annual Jimmy McHugh Memorial Concert in Woodside Halls, St George’s Cross, G20 on Saturday 15 January.  The late Jimmy McHugh was a huge musical influence in the Irish communities and his memorial is this annual concert which is always a sell out.  For further information see website: www.jimmymchugh.com