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Friends of Ellon Cemetery celebrate their first anniversary

By Kirsty Brown

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The Friends Of Ellon Cemetery have been looking back on their first year of taking action to approve the local amenity for visitors.

A meeting was held last October to discuss the formation of the group, which was inspired by the success of a similar volunteer group in Turriff.

Unfortunately much of the group's plans for this year have been put on hold by the pandemic, but they have still managed to start carrying out some general tidying up of the cemetery and car park and have rallied lots of support from local businesses.

Councillor Gillian Owen said, “On October 9 last year I held the inaugural meeting of the Friends of Ellon Cemetery.

"Residents gathered in the Ellon Primary School Hall to listen to Morag Lightening from the Friends of Turriff Cemetery who explained how they had realised their very successful group, we also heard from Andrew Macintyre the Landscape Services Manager for Ellon on how we could work in partnership to achieve an improved cemetery where residents can go to reflect.

“Another meeting was arranged in February where office bearers were elected; Robert Mcgregor became the chairman and Bill Gibb the treasurer.

"A site visit was carried out where members of the group used a map of the Cemetery to decide on the projects that we are all keen to pursue.”

Friends Of Ellon Cemetery. Picture: Kirsty Brown
Friends Of Ellon Cemetery. Picture: Kirsty Brown

Chairman Robert Mcgregor said: “Obviously Covid has had an impact because we were unable to meet face to face.

"The team, under Bill, started to meet weekly to start the process of weeding the beds in the car park and preparing the paths.

"I think everyone can see the difference that has been made.

"We felt it really important to celebrate the first anniversary and so we met socially distancing as appropriate to make sure it was marked.

“The Facebook page is up and running and let’s everyone know what is going on.

"Group members gather on a Monday from 1pm to carry out tasks.

"Anyone can come along and if you can’t make Monday’s it doesn’t matter you can go along at your leisure.

"We have a Just Giving page as we are trying to raise money to help us with the projects.

"We have approached many local Businesses and I have to say we have had a tremendous response particularly in terms of materials and I would like to place on record our sincere thanks to everyone who has contributed. "

The crowdfunding page has been set up to benefit the efforts of Friends Of Ellon Cemetery and Ellon Civic Pride's efforts to improve the amenity of the town, and you can support it online here: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/ecp-tfoec

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