Friday, September 28, 2018

The Curling Image Project (Week 4)

CIP-22. National coach Jane Sanderson at work in the 1980s. She was an inspiration to many of us, and, I feel, has never received the recognition she deserves for her contribution to the sport in Scotland over the years. (35mm transparency, photographer not known.)

CIP-23. Attending the Macdonald Brier Championship in London, Ontario, 1974, was one of the greatest curling experiences of my life. That's the BC team nearest the lens, with Bernie Sparkes (on the right) getting ready to sweep. The team was Jim Armstrong (skip), Bernie (3rd), Gerry Peckham (2nd) and Clark Winterton (lead). What dates this pic is Bernie's flares! (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-24. This is Larry McGrath, the skip of the Saskatchewan team which finished as runners-up at the 1974 Macdonald Brier. Note that he's sliding with a synthetic broom known as a Rink Rat. In 1974 the eleven competing teams just played a round robin, no semis or page playoffs. 1974 was significant too, in that it was the last year that you had to stop any part of your body going over the hog during delivery, see here. (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-25. Three St John brothers (Ron, Wayne and Rod) made up the rest of Larry McGrath's Saskatchewan team at the 1974 Brier in London. They were the loudest team on the ice when they got to work with their rink rats! The promotional film of the 1974 is online and available to watch thanks to Curling Canada, here. You can see the players in delivery trying to stop going over the hog! And can you spot me in the stands? (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-26. It's a bit blurry, but so are my memories of an amazing week. Here is Ron Anton (in the head) encouraging the Alberta front end on their skip Hec Gervais' stone. Warren Hansen was 2nd and Darrel Sutton lead, and the team won the event. (Hansen is on the right. From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-27. I enjoyed watching the Prince Edward Island team, and not just because their skip had a distinctive name on his back. Bob Dillon skipped John Fortier, Jerry Muzinka and Merrill Wiggington. They finished with a 3-7 win-loss record. (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan) (And if you need reminded about the other Bob Dillon's curling song, go here.)

CIP-28. Part of the curling history exhibition 'Scottish Curling Through The Ages' which ran in the Perth Museum, in conjunction with the 1975 Air Canada Silver Broom World Curling Championship. The large dividers were a measuring implement, NOT for scoring the rings, as some have postulated. These are now at the Fife Folk Museum in Ceres. (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

Origin of the photos are as indicated. Previous Curling Image Project posts can be found in the archive, on the right. 

Friday, September 21, 2018

The Curling Image Project (Week 3)

CIP-15. Does anyone have memories of drinking in The Silver Broom pub in Perth? (35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-16. Another 'When We Were Young' pic. This is a very young Mike Hay, for a series of coaching slides used in the 1980s, before the no-backswing delivery began to be taught. Mike was the British Olympic Association's chef de mission for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. (35mm transparency, photographer not known.)

CIP-17. Outside play in a photo dated January 7, 1891. This is one of a series of photos from January 1891, rescued from an old family album. It's amongst the oldest I have in my collection. The original (15x10.4 cm) is rather faded, and has been enhanced to produce the above. The provenance is unknown, but the location could be the pond in the grounds of Cambo House, Kingsbarns, Fife (see here). Can anyone confirm this?

CIP-18. Play on an outside 'Cairnie-style' artificial rink. Rescued from an old album with five others. Sadly no provenance, nor date, nor place. Ideas, anyone? The original is a 12x9 cm print, photographer unknown.

CIP-19. "It's a haggis!" Scotland's Willie Young tempts Canada's Wes Richardson with a recently shot haggis at the 1962 Scotch Cup. (From a 6x6 cm contact print, by Michael Burns Photography.)

CIP-20. The Swedish team (Rolf Arfwidsson, Knut Bartels, Per Ivar Rydgren, and Arne Stern) contemplates its next play at the 1962 Scotch Cup at the Haymarket Ice Rink, Edinburgh. Scotland's Willie Young is on the right. (From a 6x6 cm contact print, by Michael Burns Photography.) Note that you can watch some of the live action in the original promotional film here, and here.

CIP-21. Spectators watch USA's Fran Kleffman and Scotland's 3rd player John Pearson at the 1962 Scotch Cup at the Haymarket rink in Edinburgh. The USA team was Dick Brown (4th), Terry Kleffman (3rd), Fran Kleffman (skip and 2nd), and Nick Jerulle (lead). Scotland was Willie Young (skip), John Pearson (3rd), Sandy Anderson (2nd) and Bobby Young (lead). Note the lockers, back right. Were these used by local club curlers to store their own stones? Anyone confirm this? (From a 6x6 cm contact print, by Michael Burns Photography.)
ADDED LATER: Trevor Dodds has confirmed that the lockers were indeed used to store stones, and curling gear, right up until the rink closed in 1979.

The source of images are as indicated. For more Curling Image Project posts go here and here.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

From Scotland to the USA

It is said often that it was the Scots who took the sport of curling to North America, but very rarely do actual names come to light.

My attention was grabbed some time ago when, thanks to the British Newspaper Archive, I came across a short article in the Dumfries and Galloway Standard of Wednesday, April 29, 1857. This was titled 'THE CHANNEL-STONE IN NORTH AMERICA - EXTENSION OF CURLING'.

Here's the article in full. "A number of the miners who left the villages of Wanlockhead and Leadhills two or three years since, having located themselves the banks of the classic Susquehanna, at a place named Pittston, in the county of Luzerne, North America, have shouldered broom during the last winter, and formed themselves into a curling society. The club numbers eighteen, who mean to adopt the rules and regulations the Caledonian Curling Society; and that they may the more easily carry out their intentions, they elected the following office-bearers, namely, John Williamson, president, Mr William Reid, secretary, William Williamson, treasurer. The members committee are - Messrs James Moffat, James Watson, John M'Kenderick, John Williamson, junior, and William Slimmon.

Mr Williamson was thirty years cashier (of) the Wanlockhead club, and by his untiring exertions contributed greatly to promote its prosperity. The juniors of the Pittston club are all good and keen curlers, partly reared under the tuition of Williamson, and have taken early opportunity of shewing their attachment to Scotia's national and manly game by attempting to establish it in the land of their adoption.

The club have ordered a very handsome medal from Mr Muirhead, Glasgow, and have likewise sent to Watson, who was twenty-seven years president of the Wanlockhead club, a photographic representation of a band of curlers, fully equipped, and also a massive gold pen and pencil-case, with a suitable inscription, as a mark of their friendship, and a memorial of the many happy days spent on the 'crystal field' in their native glen, and the joyous meetings which occasionally took place among the merry and warm-hearted band after the contest.

The Pittston club played their first game on the 30th January last. The spiel excited much curiosity among the inhabitants of the district, and a considerable crowd assembled to witness their sport; and therefore they expect next season to double their numbers."

So, the names we have of some of the members of the Pittston Curling Club in 1857 are: John Williamson, William Reid, William Williamson, James Moffat, James Watson, John M'Kenderick, John Williamson junior, and William Slimmon. 

I concentrated initially on John Williamson, and his son of the same name. Williamson snr had been a member of the Wanlockhead curling club for many years, and the club's treasurer since 1821. The old minute books of the curling club, which survive in the Miners' Library at the Wanlockhead Lead Mining Museum, confirm that.

John Williamson and his son were still living in Wanlockhead at the 1851 census. In 1851 John snr, a widower, was 58 and his son was 21, and that of course tells us how old they were when the Pittston curling club began in 1857 - John was 64, and John junior 27. They are both listed as lead miners in the 1851 census. They had a house servant (Helen Porter, age 21) living with them in 1851. Ten years previously, there had been a wife, Jane (if I have deciphered the writing correctly) of the same age as her husband, given as 45, and two other children, James (15) and William (14), as well as John (11). Note there is a discrepancy in John snr's age in the records. He is 45 in 1841, and 58 in 1851. One can easily understand how this might have happened, but if one takes the earlier age as the correct one, it means that he was just 61, not 64, when the Pittston CC was formed. Still, I think it was extremely courageous for John snr to leave Wanlockhead in his late 50s (say) to start a new life in the USA.

There would have been two reasons for leaving Wanlockhead in the 1850s. One would have been economic. The viability of the lead mines in the area would have been a consideration. And with the loss of his wife one can understand the Williamsons taking the opportunity to emigrate to North America to start a new life. Note that one of the children is called William, and there is indeed a William Williamson mentioned as a member of the newly formed Pittston CC. It is possible that these are one and the same person. Perhaps William had moved out of the family home by the time of the 1851 census.

I would love to find out what happened to father and son after 1857. I've failed to confirm what happened to the rest of the family, either before or after they emigrated. Death records were not compulsory here before 1855. However, the Pittston Curling Club was still active in 1860. A letter to the Editor of the New York Times on January 9, 1860, records 'the result of that long-pending match between the Pittston (Penn) Curling Club and the New-York Caledonian Curling Club, of New-York. The game came off at Pittston, on Friday, Jan 6, with 12 players on each side'. John Williamson snr and John Williamson jnr were the skips of two of the Pittston teams. Overall, the New York club were the winners.

I have recently added a wonderful book to my curling library, 'A History of the Grand National Curling Club of America and its Member Clubs: 1867 - 2017', assembled by Gwen Krailo-Lyons, the GNCC President in 2007-2009 and 2016-2018. The Grand National Curling Club is the oldest national governing body for curling in North America. Pittston Curling Club was one of the eighteen curling clubs belonging to the GNCC in its first season, and so we can assume that the Pittston curlers had weathered the Civil War (1861-1865), and were among the founding member clubs when the GNCC was formed shortly after the war ended.

The book has individual entries for almost all of the curling clubs currently associated with the GNCC. The Anthracite Curling Club, in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, traces the origins of curling in the area. Unfortunately, Dave Cawley and John Burns who submitted the entry for the Anthracite Curling Club, say, "Little is known about the Pittston Curling Club or what happened to it." However, they note that other curling clubs sprung up in the area and then they too disappeared, namely, The United Curling Club of Pittston (1891-1905), The Thistle Lackawanna Curling Club of Avoca (1892-1900), The Thistle Curling Club of Inkerman (1895-1897), and the Wilkes-Barre Curling Club (1895-1906).

After a break of many years, local enthusiasts founded the Scranton Curling Club in 2006, curling on ice at a skating rink in Pittston. The club moved to Wilkes-Barre when that town renovated their ice rink, and changed its name to the Anthracite Curling Club. The club rightly traces its legacy to the Wanlockhead curlers who emigrated to Pennsylvania in the 1850s.

It's all an interesting story, but I'm very much aware that it is incomplete. This is why I've not written about this before now. I have not found any record of how and exactly when the Williamsons travelled to Pittston. Or how they would have learned about coal mining opportunities there.

I've wondered if the medal ordered from Mr Muirhead, Glasgow, has survived. And what happened to the photo of the curlers, and the 'massive' gold pen and pencil-case, referred to in the newspaper article?

Did father and son have a successful life in Pittston?

I've also had limited success in trying to find the background of the other Scots mentioned in the newspaper article (William Reid, William Williamson, James Moffat, James Watson, John M'Kenderick, and William Slimmon). What did these six curlers do before they got to Pittston, and how did their lives pan out thereafter? There's a whole book to be written here. A huge amount of research would have to be done first, and I've probably left it too late to start. Perhaps local genealogists in the Wanlockhead/Leadhills area in Scotland, or in Pennsylvania, might well have information to hand. Can anyone in the USA trace their ancestry to Scottish miners who came over to work the coal mines of Pittston in the 1850s? If so, do get in touch.

There's one other reference to curling in Pittston that I've discovered recently in a local Scottish newspaper. In The Hamilton Advertiser of January 27, 1872, in a section called 'American Notes' the following appears. "Curling is becoming more common as Scotchmen are getting closer together. Mr Wiseman, watchmaker here, had an order last season for twelve pairs of curling stones and handles for the County of Lucerne, Pennsylvania. A society had been formed there called the Pittston Mutual Curling Club. President, Thomas Waddell; vice-president, Henry Smith; secretary, Walter Whinton; treasurer, William Wallace. The stones were sent off in the end November last." This may be a missing link in the evolution of the curling clubs in Pennsylvania, or it may refer to the original Pittston club having changed its name after a few years of membership of the Grand National, becoming, for whatever reason, the Pittston 'Mutual'. And here are yet more names to research!

Thanks to Gwen Krailo-Lyons. The British Newspaper Archive continues to be an immense reservoir of curling's history.

Friday, September 14, 2018

The Curling Image Project (Week 2)

CIP-8. One of my favourite photographs! It dates from 1956 and shows action from the opening day of the new season at the Central Scotland Ice Rink, Perth. The women curlers may be from the Strathallan curling club. Names, anyone? There's no indication just who the gentleman on the adjacent sheet is! (21x16 cm black and white print, credited to Star Photos, Perth.)

CIP-9. The Billy Howat team of Robert Clark (3rd), Robert Shaw (2nd), and Alistair Henry (lead) won the Langs Supreme Scottish Curling Championship at the Kirkcaldy Ice Rink in 1985. L-R: Howat, Henry, Shaw and Clark). (24 x 19 cm black and white print, unknown photographer. Published in 'Curling', Vol 3 No 5, 1985)

CIP-10. Back in the days before I had found out just how difficult it was to take good action pix of curlers and curling myself, I knew this was the standard to which I should aspire! It was taken by the late Rod McLeod. It is of Canada's Connie Laliberte on her way to winning the Royal Bank Ladies World Curling Championship at Perth in 1984. Connie's team was Chris More (3rd), Corinne Peters (2nd), and Janet Arnott (lead). (From a 35mm transparency, Rod McLeod)

CIP-11. Has anyone a suggestion what the trophy might be, and who has won it? Who is making the presentation? (22x16.4 cm black and white print, credited to 'Falkirk Herald Studio', so perhaps a club that used to play at the Falkirk Rink?)

ADDED LATER. (Thanks to John Brown) Since posting this pic, I've since discovered it was published in the Scottish Curler magazine in March 1957. Sir John Muir is presenting the 'Queen's Trophy' to Falkirk's A C Carroll, with his team of J Dunn, D Adamson and G S Adamson.This trophy was the 'consolation event' for the British Open at Falkirk Ice Rink. Teams which lost in the first round of the main competition were eligible to play for the Queen's Trophy.

CIP-12. One of many 'when we were young' photos I have to show. The pic is of four 'Lanarkshire Ice Rink Juniors', (L-R) Jackie Steele, Margaret Craig, Isobel Torrance and Christine Allison (skip). The team finished ninth at the Wallisellen International Tournament in Switzerland on October 10-11, 1981. What interesting and successful curling lives these four women have had since then! (The 14.7x10.5 cm print is one of many by the later Erwin Sautter of Zumikon who was a great supporter of Scottish Curling, and the sport in general.)

CIP-13. "Medals must be worn!" I need help in identifying this one. It's a beautiful quaich, and there are lovely single soled stones on the table. But just look at the badges/medals on the curler second from left! No date. Names, anyone? (25x20 cm black and white print, credited to Mitchell and Averell Photographers of Dumbarton, so could it be of Dumbarton CC curlers?)

ADDED LATER: Liz and John Paul thought the person on the right might be the late Jim Hutton. Liz followed this up and writes, "Thanks to Bill and Corona Marshall, here’s the info required....1985 Presentation to Dumbarton CC of the Strathleven Quaich. L-R: Director of Strathleven Bond, Willie Wilkie, President DCC, Gordon Kilgour MD Strathleven Bond, Jim Hutton Secretary DCC."

CIP-14. Mrs Ada Wilson, described as the 'tartan-trewed skip', on the ice at the Central Scotland Ice Rink, Perth, in the 1950s. Don't know exactly when. Note the duster on the ice at the front of the house! (21x16 cm black and white print, credited to Star Photos, Perth) 

Sources of all images are as stated. More about the Curling Image Project here.

Friday, September 07, 2018

The Curling Image Project

I have been amassing photographs of curling for many years. Many date from before the days of digital cameras and smart phones, and have never been digitised, nor posted online. Most never will be. But I did decide over the summer that it would be interesting to share some of them, and so the 'Curling Image Project' has been born.

My plan is to post a photo each day on Twitter, and then gather these together every week or so here on the Curling History site. The first photo went out on September 1 on @CurlingHistory. Below are the first seven photos that have gone up.

Why do this? Well, on a selfish note, it keeps my old brain active! Important these days. And I do like a good wallow in nostalgia. It is also a project to remind the (young) curlers of today, and those new to curling, that the sport has an interesting history! I also hope that it might engage others who have an interest in curling's history. Not all the photos were taken by me, and I will try to make sure that the original photographer is credited in each case. In some cases there will be photos with no indication of who is in the picture, or where it was taken. That's when you may be able to help.

The project needed a name, and I decided to call it the 'Curling Image Project' - at least that sounded more grand than 'odd photos from Bob's collection'!

Thanks to Jayne Stirling, one time correspondent for the Scottish Curler magazine, and 2017 Scottish Mixed Doubles champion, who gave me the idea for a 'photo of the day' from her own Facebook account a whiles ago. 

Comments are welcomed, but these are monitored, and may not appear immediately below. Or you can email me (address on the right) if you wish to add any information on an individual photograph.

CIP-1. The Jubilee Stone is swept down the ice during the opening ceremony of the 1975 Silver Broom World Curling Championship at the Central Scotland Ice Rink, Perth, Scotland. Note Bill Tetley's Canadian team in green nearest the camera. They did move before the cannon was fired! (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-2. Round robin play at the 1975 Silver Broom. How many players can you identify? You can check the WCF Historical Records for ALL the participants' names, here. (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-3. "Save me first!" Two participants in the 1979 Grand Match on the Lake of Menteith with the two on duty divers/frogmen, should the worst happen! Names, anyone? (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-4. This helicopter on the ice at the Lake of Menteith had brought the Royal Club President, Captain Jack Anderson, to the 1979 Grand Match. (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-5. The great Paul Gowsell team in action at the 1976 Uniroyal World Junior Curling Championship at Aviemore. Paul Gowsell (skip), Neil Houston (3rd), Glen Jackson (2nd), Kelly Stearne (lead) won gold. (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-6. The Scotland team in action at the 1976 Uniroyal World Junior Curling Championship at Aviemore. Ken Horton is in the head for his skip's (Bob Kelly's) stone. Keith Douglas and Willie Jamieson are the sweepers. (From a 35mm transparency, Bob Cowan)

CIP-7. Ed Werenich, the skip of the winning Canadian side, holds the Silver Broom aloft at the closing ceremony of the 1983 Air Canada Silver Broom World Curling Championship in Regina. The Canadians (Werenich, Paul Savage, John Kawaja, and Neil Harrison) beat Keith Wendorf, Hans Dieter Kiesel, Sven Saile and Heiner Martin in the final. (From a 35mm transparency, taken, if I recall correctly, by a colleague on the press bench with my camera.)

Photo sources are as indicated. Slides (35mm transparencies) were popular from the 1960s to the mid-1990s. They were a cheap and easy way to make images which could be projected on a screen with a slide projector. The above seven slides are just a sample of several boxes of them I have kept. Scanning them all these years later gives results of varying quality, as you can see.

Tuesday, September 04, 2018

How Scotland Fared at the Commonwealth Winter Games

Was there really a Commonwealth Winter Games? When I noticed the badge above on Google Images I went searching. There was indeed a series of such competitions, in 1958, 1962, 1966, and 1970, according to Wikipedia (see here), and this informative blog article, from where the image above originates.

The Commonwealth Winter Games were the brainchild of Thomas Dow Richardson (usually known as 'Tyke' Richardson), a keen figure skater, who represented GB in the 1924 Olympic Winter Games, and wrote several books about his sport. He was eventually to receive an OBE for services to skating.

The Games were never officially sanctioned. Karl Magee, Archivist at the University of Stirling Library (which holds the Commonwealth Games Scotland archive, see here) has been extremely helpful in providing information. Richardson's efforts certainly came to the attention of the Commonwealth Games organisers. Karl notes that the Minutes of the Meeting of the British Empire and Commonwealth Games Federation in General Assembly at Melbourne University, December 2, 1956, indicate that a 'Winter Games', had been discussed: "Lord Aberdare (Wales) stated that enthusiasts from many countries within the Commonwealth and Empire had approached him regarding the staging of a series of British Empire and Commonwealth Winter Games." After discussion, it seems that the issue was not progressed, "The matter, therefore, was left in abeyance unless the project was raised officially on a future occasion by one of the constituent members of the Federation."

After the first Winter Games had taken place in 1958, the minutes of a meeting of General Council, British Empire and Commonwealth Games Council for Scotland, in Edinburgh, February 23, 1959, has the following, "Winter Games: The Secretary reported he had attended a meeting of the Federation Advisory Committee in London to discuss the proposal to hold Winter Games under the patronage of the Federation. The scheme outlined by Mr T D Richardson envisaged the Federation taking over the administration, but a separate committee from the Winter Sports bodies themselves would do all the organising. Competitors or their Associations would be expected to finance their own travel and subsistence, but National Games Councils would be asked to approve and sign their entries.

As all the Winter Games bodies did not appear enthusiastic about the scheme, it was agreed to circularise them all to ascertain:
Whether they were in favour of the concept of future Commonwealth Winter Games being held on the lines detailed, and
Whether, if they were in favour, they would be prepared to assist in the financing and organising of them, as the Federation would not be involved in either of these."

It would seem that there was little support for this scheme, as the Minutes of a meeting of the Advisory Committee of the British Empire and Commonwealth Games Federation, held in London, on March 28, 1961, had the following, "Commonwealth Winter Games. The Chairman reported that further unofficial ‘Commonwealth Winter Games’ would be staged in St Moritz in January 1962. These Games were not recognised by the Federation or by its affiliated BE and CG Associations. All attempts to find a firm basis of finance and administration for these Games had hitherto failed, but the door was not closed. It was hoped to have an ‘observer’ from the Federation during the period of the Games."

The lack of official support for the Commonwealth Winter Games did not deter Tyke Richardson from organising them again in 1962, 1966, and 1970. He died in 1971.

Tyke Richardson's biography can be found here, and, aside from figure skating, it seems he was a keen sportsman. Apparently he also curled. And that information may go some way to explaining why there was a curling competition as part of the 1966 Games!

There's a report entitled 'Curling in the Commonwealth Winter Games' in the Royal Caledonian Curling Club Annual for 1966-67. This sits alongside other 'Reports of International Competitions'.

The report is by RCCC Council Member Tom Stewart, and reads, "The Curling Competition forming part of the Commonwealth Winter Games was held at St Moritz, Switzerland, on 27th/28th January, and took place on the St Moritz Curling Club Ice. Eight rinks took part - three from Scotland, two from England, two from Canadian Servicemen in Europe, and one rink provided by the St Moritz Club. The Scottish Rinks were skipped by the Royal Club President, Bill Robertson Aikman, Bob Grierson, and veteran Bob Dick; the English Rinks by Dan Kerr and Bill Black; the Canadians by Wing Commander G Robertson and LAC Bangle, and the St Moritz rink by Henry Martineau.

About 11.00 pm on Thursday, 20th January, the President (who seemed somewhat surprised that it had actually happened) found his party all present and correct at London Airport. The party was richly enhanced by the inclusion of the four charming wives of Bob Grierson and his rink.

An uneventful flight was followed by a pleasant train journey through magnificent scenery and in brilliant sunshine and the party reached St Moritz about 11.30 am. We were greeted by Harry Martineau and Jimmy Niven of the St Moritz Club, and Bobby Zen Ruffinen was who to be our 'mine host' for the duration of our stay.

The party took part in competitions at the St Moritz Engiadina Club (18 rinks), the highlight being the St Moritz Curling Derby with an entry of 36 rinks from all over Switzerland and including two rinks from Sweden. Scotland No 1 (Bill Robertson Aikman) finished best of the visiting British rinks being 13th with 31 points - the winners notching a total of 40 points. But for losing his last two games by one shot, Bill might well have been in the first three. The weather wasn't too good and the ice conditions varied considerably.

On Thursday afternoon when the opening round of the (Commonwealth Winter) Games was played, conditions were not ideal and the three Scottish Rinks made their exit - a disappointing effort perhaps, but conditions were the same for everyone, and we seek no excuse.

Conditions were better next day and in the semifinals Dan Kerr fell to the Canadians and Harry Martineau to the London rink of Bill Black. The final was close and exciting and eventually the Canadian Air Force rink, skipped by Wing Commander George Robertson, proved too good for Bill Black.

Both rinks are to be congratulated in winning the Gold and Silver Medals respectively.

At the presentation Cocktail Party given by Harry Martineau, Bill Robertson Aikman presented an RCCC plaque to the St Moritz Club, and a Scottish Standard to each of the skips. Each competitor was presented with a Commonwealth Winter Games souvenir badge.

We cannot speak too highly of the hospitality received during our stay, and would like to record our thanks to the St Moritz Club, Harry Martineau, Jimmy Niven, Bobby Zen Ruffinen and many others who did so much to make our visit a success.

We were also very pleased and delighted when our old friend Collie Campbell flew in from Canada to spend a few days amongst us. Needless to say, 'Night Class' and 'Morning Class' were immediately resumed and thoroughly enjoyed. The indefatigable Collie does a 'whale of a job' for curling everywhere and it was a tonic to see him looking so well and carrying his ambassadorial work to Switzerland.

It was with regret that the party, by now a little 'battle weary', broke up on Saturday, 29th. Bert Sibbald and Ronald Grant went on to Kitzbuhel, Tom Stewart to Zermatt and the remainder back to London, Manchester, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Inverness, Aberdeen and Stranraer."

James Niven, Secretary of the host St Moritz Club, added the following, "None of the three Scottish Teams struck form, but this had something to do with the ill health from which many of them suffered. An excellent performance was put up by Henry Martineau's St Moritz CC Team who first beat the Canadians, skipped by LAC Bangle, and were wearing down Bill Black's Surrey Team in a ding-dong game and standing at four-all when, with one stone to play, St Moritz were lying six without a guard and Bill Black drew the winning shot, and went on to win.

In the final, the Surrey Team from the London Province played well at the start, but were eventually beaten by the consistency of the cheery Canadians who were very well skipped by George Robertson, RCAF."

And here is a photo of the winning team, from the 1966-67 Annual:

This is captioned, "The Canadian Air Force Rink from Metz, France, who won the Gold Medals in the Curling Competition in the Commonwealth Winter Games at St Moritz. Left to right: Mrs Martineau, who presented the medals, Joe Zedan, Ron Found, Scotty Miller and Wing Commander George Robertson (skip). The runners-up, who won silver medals, were Bill Black, Davie Kennedy, Jock Marr and Jim Adams. (The photographer is not stated.)

Images are as stated in the text. Many thanks to Karl Magee for his help with this article.