Lochaber Rotary is delighted to hear that Ruairidh Poll of Lochaber High School has been selected for the flagship National Youth Orchestra of Scotland Jazz Orchestra after a demanding audition process. 

Thanks to the Kenneth J Macpherson Memorial Trust for Young Musicians of Lochaber, now administered by Rotary, Ruaraidh was able to attend the Access Course for the National Youth Jazz Orchestra last year and had improvisation lessons with the inspirational performer and educator, Sue McKenzie.  The Trust was set up in 1995 in memory of the late principal Teacher of Music at Lochaber High School.

S5 student Ruairidh, said; “We spoke a lot about stylistic things like having a great swing feel and the importance of articulation. It was super to learn techniques for better structuring and developing solos and different ways of implementing contrast.

“Lessons with Sue have definitely been helpful but I think that Access was even more so. In the spring I learned a lot about functional harmony and how to approach more effectively playing over complex changes, for example. 

“The second set of NYOS sessions were incredibly inspiring and motivating, connecting with other people like myself. It was very valuable to receive good information on building practice routines and exercises as well as understanding how to create  my own personal relationship with music. The summer course has had a profoundly influential impact on my playing and on my life. Thanks so much for the financial support.”

Principal Music Instructor with High Life Highland, Karen Thomson, said; “This lets Rotary see how beneficial their financial assistance has been to Ruairidh’s musical education and we are very grateful.  We cannot provide this level of experience in Lochaber High for the exceptionally talented students and it really means a lot that they can be supported in this way to expand their musical boundaries.”

Rotary President Simon Hardiman, said; “Lochaber has a strong musical tradition and it is always great to see our young folk achieving great things and we wish Ruairidh well as he moves on to the national stage”.  






The Rotary Young Photographer Competition went ahead this year as normal.  Heats take place in Rotary Districts across the UK and Lochaber’s winners go forward to the West of Scotland heat.  

Ellis John MacConnachie has won the Senior competition (14 – 17) with Cheryl C Macintyre the runner up, both from Ardnamurchan High School.

The Intermediate competition (11 – 14) was won by Fraser Sneddon from Lochaber High and the runner up Lexi Duncan from Ardnamurchan High School.

Winning entries are shown above: Ellis John’s to the left and Fraser’s on the right.

Organising Rotarian Mike MacGruer congratulated the winners and expressed his thanks to High School teachers Katie Cockerill from Ardnamurchan and Vicky Barclay from Lochaber for the encouragement given.

When presenting certificates and vouchers to the winners and runners up Rotary President, Simon Hardiman, added; “Rotary much appreciates the advice and experience of Iain Ferguson in acting as judge.”

Bag Packing

All proceeds to the Killiemuir/Nepal Project

Times To be arranged

Lunch Meeting

All members and visitors from other clubs are Welcome, we meet every Wednesday at 12:30 pm for 1:00 pm