West Linton shows its support for Ukraine with vigil

OVER the weekend, a candle-lit vigil was held in a Borders village to show solidarity with the people of Ukraine.

On Sunday (February 27) crowds gathered at Raemartin Square in West Linton to “come together” to show their support for the country which is currently under attack from Russian military forces.

The vigil was organised by the Church of Scotland and the Episcopal Church in West Tweeddale, as well as members of the community.


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Reverend Nick Bowry, the Rector at St Mungo’s Episcopal Church in West Linton told us: “We thought we’d put a note out and see what interest there was.

“The people of West Linton have got a good reputation for being very generous and caring about others.

“It was no surprise they all came together to express their solidarity with the people of Ukraine.

“It was heartwarming to see it.”

At the vigil Revd. Bowry and Tony Foley, the minister at St Andrew’s Church (Church of Scotland), gave a few words and invited those gathered to pray for Ukraine.

Ian Reid, one of the community organisers of the vigil, said: “There’s been a history of West Linton responding to need when there’s been war in Europe.

“For example there were a lot of child refugees at Broomlee Camp during World War II.

“And then after the war refugees from mainland Europe lived at Broomlee Camp as well.

“Even recently we’ve had children from Chernobyl, from Ukraine, coming over here in the summer holidays as part of a programme for them.”


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Mr Reid explained that he wanted to ensure that people of all nationalities were welcome at the vigil, particularly as West Linton is home to people originally from Russia.

“This feels like it’s nothing to do with people in Russia,” he said. “There’s a lot of people in our community from Russia.

“At the vigil we made it clear that people of all nationalities are welcome.

“We feel it’s really important that people from Russia feel safe and not blamed.”

Mr Reid added that there is the possibility of future vigils, if the community wishes to hold them again.

A collection of items including clothing, medicines, and blankets have been arranged by members of the community which are being collected by local business Cavalry Transport.

These donations will then be transported to the Poland-Ukraine border in an effort to continue supporting refugees fleeing the conflict.

Border Telegraph | News