Last year’s Intermediate winner from Megan Park, Ardnamurchan High School

Despite Covid, the Rotary Young Photographer Competition is going ahead this year as normal.  Heats will take place in Rotary Districts across the UK and Lochaber’s winners will go forward to the West of Scotland heat. 

Based on a qualifying date 31 August 2021 the competition categories are for Intermediate (11 to 13) and Senior (14 to 17).    Competitors are invited to send entries on the theme, “Colours of Nature”.  To accompany the photograph, each entrant must provide a brief sentence describing the relationship of the photograph to the theme.

Lochaber Rotary is grateful for the expertise of Iain Ferguson, Photographer, who will be the principal judge.

Entries should be sent to Iain Ferguson by 3rd December with a view to making a decision before Christmas with winners and runners up being announced in early January.

High School Head Teachers have a copy of the full competition rules but the details can also be downloaded from the Lochaber Rotary website here.   

President Simon Hardiman, said; “I encourage High School pupils to take part and hope Lochaber can be as successful as last year when we had an entrant from Ardnamurchan High School in the UK final after winning the District then senior Scottish and North of England heat.”

Young Chef Angus Dunn 2018

Young Chef Angus Dunn 2018

Hard on the heels of winning the Lochaber-wide heat, followed by topping the judges’ poll in the West of Scotland stage, fourteen-year-old Angus Dunn from Strontian was a runner-up in the All-Scotland & North of England heat, narrowly missing out on a place in the UK finals.
The purpose of the competition is to encourage and develop creative and value-for-money cookery in young people – a valuable and highly employable life skill in today’s world.  Angus, along with his mother Justine and Trish Kennedy from Ardnamurchan High School, joined the Lochaber Rotary Club at its evening business meeting on 6 June when Past President Donald Young, who co-ordinates the Lochaber leg of the competition, presented Angus with his trophy.

Club President Donald McCorkindale congratulated Angus and said that the Club was very proud that a local lad had progressed so far in this national competition. He added, “I know Angus and know him to be a talented young man”. Angus has benefitted from support and training from chef Gary Phillips of Kilcambe Lodge Hotel as well as encouragement from his mother and Trish.Trish is the Young Chef Mentor at the school and liaises with the Rotary Club in running the popular competition. On behalf of the school, Trish said “We are extremely proud of Angus’ achievement. He worked extremely hard at home practising and refining his recipes and his wins in the earlier stages and runner-up at this national stage were well deserved”.

photo – Young Chef Angus Dunn, Club President Donald McCorkindale; Trish Kennedy, Young Chef Mentor, Ardnamurchan High School; Justine Dunn, Angus’ mother; President-Elect Iain Johnston; Past President Donald Young, Co-ordinator of the Young Chef Competition



Club President Donald McCorkindale welcomed the winners of this year’s annual Rotary poetry competition, Alan Byrne and Sarah MacEachan from St Columba’s RC Primary, along with their Head Teacher Violet Smith, to lunch at a recent Rotary meeting. The winner of the Gaelic language poem, Martha Pritchard from Acharacle Primary, was unable to attend.

Over 200 entries were submitted from Lochaber’s 25 primary schools -stretching from Kinlochleven in the east to the Island of Eigg in the west and from Invergarry in the north to Duror Primary in South Lochaber.

The subject of this year’s creative challenge was “The Seashore” – a recognition of the importance that the contribution of the sea and coastline make to Lochaber’s outstanding visual landscape, its economy and its character. This topic posed a real challenge to the youngsters who addressed it in a wide range of poetic creations.

After lengthy deliberation discussion, including reading all the entries aloud, the judges decided to award the overall winner’s prize to Alan Byrne from Primary 6 at St Columba’s Primary at the Caol Campus. Alan receives a trophy and his school receives a cheque for £50. All the winners (see below) receive book tokens to the value of £20 with £10 tokens to the runners-up.

Past-President John Goodall, current chair of the Club’s Youth Activities Committee, said “We were pleased with the quality of the entries, particularly with the inventiveness of the very young pupils in primaries 1 and 2, and we are happy with the year-on-year uptake from Lochaber’s schools. The poetry competition continues to be very popular. We extend our thanks to Lorna Findlayson who read all the poems aloud. This was a huge help to the judges”.

The winners were presented with their certificates and book tokens at the Club’s weekly business lunch meeting. Pictured are Margaret Boyd, vice-convenor of the Youth Activities Committee, John Goodall, convenor, Sarah and Alan, Violet Smith, Headteacher, and Club President Donald McCorkindale

Primaries 1-4
Winner Sarah MacEachan, p4, St Columba’s Primary, Caol
Runner Up Ailsa MacDougall, p4, Arisaig Primary

Primaries 5-7
Winner Alan Byrne, p6, St Columba’s Primary, Caol
Runner Up Brodie Groundwater, p5, Kinlochleven Primary
Gaelic language winner: Martha Pritchard, p2 Acharacle Primary



Picture, courtesy of Iain Ferguson, The Write Image.
Ailsa Janzen, Junior Young Musician of the Year, Mr Rose, Music Teacher, President-Elect Iain Johnston and Francesca Rose, Senior Young Musician of the Year.

 Local young musician winners gave a “superb performance” at the Lochaber Rotary Club’s business lunch meeting on 23 May.

Ailsa Janzen, from Kinlochleven High School, winner of the Rotary Junior Young Musician of the Year, performed pieces from Bach and Dvorak on the violin. The jaunty rendition of Bach’s Gavotte thrilled the audience.

Francesca Rose, from Lochaber High School, winner of the Rotary Senior Young Musician of the Year, played Korngold’s Serenade and Squire’s Tarantella on her viola. Again, the audience was impressed by her very uplifting and professional performance.

Past-President David Thomson, himself a violinist, thanked Ailsa and Francesca on behalf of the Club for the lunchtime entertainment and said “That was a superb performance. The Lochaber Music School does wonderful work with youngsters of all ages” David then presented the musicians with their certificates and added that he was delighted that the Rotary sponsorship had resulted in such “outstanding young musicians”.

Picture, courtesy of Iain Ferguson, The Write Image.



Fourteen-year-old Angus Dunn, a third-year pupil from Ardnamurchan High School, has won the West of Scotland heat of the Rotary Young Chef Competition. This competition is open to school pupils in the 51 Rotary Club districts that stretch from Wigtownshire in the south to Fort Augustus in the north and includes the City Of Glasgow.

The purpose of the competition is to encourage and develop creativity in young people, including creativity in the kitchen. Cooking among young people is a growing interest and a valuable life skill and the challenge of this event is to prepare in two hours a three-course healthy meal comprising starter, main course and dessert for two people costing less than £15.

Angus impressed the judges with his pasta based starter of haggis-filled tortellini with a fresh pesto sauce, followed by the main course of west coast inspired smoked mackerel on wilted spinach with gratin dauphinoise. For dessert, Angus presented the judges with a mouth watering tiramisu with sugared almonds. This three-course combination was judged the winner. Rotary District Governor Gary Louttit said, “Well done Angus, I was delighted to be able to present Angus with the Winner’s Trophy”.

Angus is now preparing for the next stage of this national competition. He said “I really was surprised to win and am looking forward to the next round. Pasta is my favourite food and I am glad I have learnt to make it now”.

Lochaber Rotary Club is very proud of Angus’ considerable achievement and wishes him well in the national final where he will be flying the flag for Lochaber and for Ardnamurchan High School. Club President Donald McCorkindale added “I know Angus, and know him to be a talented young man. I was delighted to hear of his success in the District Young Chef Competition and wish him well in the next stage at Alnwick – the Scotland and North of England heat”


District Governor Gary Louttit presents Angus with the Winner’s Trophy

Angus with his winning 3-course meal for two costing under £15