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Thanks to couple

Through your paper I would like to thank the couple who came to my aid at Nivensknowe on Wednesday, December 21, at about 10am when my exhaust pipe fell off.

Their help was tremendous in getting my car home. Once again thanks.

Mr G Bryce

The Loan

Loanhead

Marathon helpers

Getting a place in the London Marathon can be like gold dust, so if you were lucky enough to get a ballot place, why not support the Meningitis Trust as a volunteer runner for the April 22 London Marathon 2012?

In exchange, the Trust will offer you one of the best Virgin London Marathon support packages available, providing you with all the support you need before, during and after the marathon.

You will be given a free personalised running vest or T-shirt, race pack (with training and dietary advice), fundraising support and encouragement from our dedicated team.

The Trust will provide you with regular marathon information updates and motivation from our supporters at our own cheering point on the route.

After the race you will be provided with transport to the Trust’s post-race celebration for a well-deserved massage, shower and buffet – where runners can meet up with friends and family.

The Meningitis Trust relies on the generosity of individuals to continue its vital work; supporting anyone affected by meningitis with free professional services, as well as raising lifesaving awareness of the disease and its symptoms.

For the many people who have been, and continue to be, affected by meningitis, and for those who will sadly be affected in the future, the Trust is a lifeline.

Events such as the London Marathon ensure that this lifeline can continue.

If you would like to find out more information, contact the Events Team at the Meningitis Trust on 0845 120 4530, email events@meningitis-trust.org or visit www.meningitis-trust.org

Emily Smith

Communications Assistant

The Meningitis Trust

Prisoners of war trip

In March 2012, I am taking a group of Far East POWs/wives/widows/siblings on a poignant return visit to the locations where they were incarcerated, namely Java, Ambon and Haruku.

Sadly out of a group of 23, the actual number of veterans in the group has dwindled to four.

Bearing in mind the average age of the veterans is 90 plus, it’s hardly surprising. Regrettably, failing health etc, is taking its toll.

This for sure will be the last such visit and I want to make absolutely sure every Far East veteran out there is aware of this tour.

Subject to Big Lottery terms and conditions, the trip will be covered by lottery funding-to the value of £1800.00.

An equal amount will be given for a relative and a carer to accompany. This is absolutely the last chance as lottery funding ends on January 31.

The visit to honour and remember what was sacrificed for us is being organised by John Babbage (email babbagejohn7@gmail.com or telephone 01582 737 172) and includes many members of The Java Far Eastern Prisoner of War Club, which is the largest and only remaining nationwide Club for these veterans and their widows.

The itinerary and bookings are currently being finalised.

If you would like to join this trip or learn more about The Java FEPOW Club visit the Club’s web site www.thejavafepowclub42.org

Lesley Clark

Chairman and Treasurer

Java Far East Prisoners of War Club

Ringing endorsement

OLYMPIC rings for Hillend is the most wonderful idea and I congratulate Provost Adam Montgomery in his attempt to secure the rings.

I hope Lord Coe will realise the potential and siting of the rings at a wonderful sports centre.

Having worked at Hillend many years ago, I saw many competitions held on the slope.

People from across Europe and youngsters from local schools had a wonderful time on the hill.

What a boost for Midlothian this would be.

I hope Councillor Montgomery is successful and gets the full backing of Midlothian Council on this project.

Peggy Anderson

Park Avenue

Bilston

Brain tumour campaign

This year, the ‘HeadSmart — be brain tumour aware’ campaign was launched by the Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust, the UK’s largest brain tumour charity.

The campaign aims to help parents and health professionals spot the signs of brain tumours in children and young people.

Since the launch in June, awareness of the campaign has increased 10 fold.

This is largely thanks to the support of local people who have tirelessly helped to spread the message, and we want to say a huge thank you to them all this festive season.

Brain tumours are the leading cause of cancer deaths in children and more than 500 children and young people are diagnosed with a brain tumour each year.

The earlier a brain tumour is diagnosed, the better the chance of survival and reduction in long-term disabilities.

With your help next year, HeadSmart aims to make every person in the country brain tumour aware.

The more people who can spot the signs of a brain tumour, the more young lives we can help save.

Thank you all.

Neil and Angela Dickson

HeadSmart

Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust

www.headsmart.org.uk/www.braintumourtrust.co.uk

Respite breaks

As we relax with our families to enjoy the festive season, it’s easy sometimes to forget what it’s is supposed to be all about – thinking of others.

I’d like to ask your readers to spare a thought for those who are unable to take such simple pleasures for granted.

There are millions of people in the UK who are struggling to cope with disability; they may be disabled themselves and confined to a wheelchair, or caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

Whatever their situation, it’s more than likely that their daily existence is a hard, unrelenting struggle with poverty, isolation, discrimination and despair.

It is a sad fact that, even in this day and age, disabled people and carers remain among the most disenfranchised and vulnerable members of society.

This year, I’d like to offer your readers the opportunity to help us change that.

I work for Vitalise, a wonderful charity that provides desperately-needed respite breaks for disabled people and carers at our accessible centres around the UK.

Our breaks are an absolute lifeline, enabling our guests to restore their ability to cope and rediscover their zest for life.

Without the opportunities we provide, life would be very bleak indeed.

But we simply couldn’t do what we do without the compassion and generosity of the public.

So this New Year, why not resolve to make a real difference to someone else’s life in 2012?

There are so many ways in which you can help, from something as simple as just making a donation, to taking part in a fund-raising event or sparing some time to volunteer at one of our centres.

It’s your chance to spread some lasting goodwill!

We really need your help.

If you would like to support Vitalise, please call 0303 303 0147 or visit www.vitalise.org.uk

Colin Brook

Senior Communications Officer

Vitalise

More letters in this week’s Advertiser