Copyright Newtonhill Parish Church 2013
Newtonhill Parish Church (Church of Scotland)
Scottish Charity No. 005679
Newtonhill Girls’ Brigade has flourished in the church ever since the building of the new kirk in the village and Fiona Leslie - who has been captain since its formation in 1995 - is justifiably proud of the number of girls who have passed through the Company. Many of them, who started as Explorers aged five or six, carried on through all the stages and eventually became officers – either in Newtonhill or wherever their work or studies had taken them.
The Girls Brigade is a world-wide Christian uniformed organisation open to girls and young women from all backgrounds and faiths. Their motto is “Seek Serve and Follow Christ”. The concept is to help the girls develop in four areas, namely; Spiritual, Physical, Educational and Service and over the course of a year they complete one topic from each section to gain a badge.
The Brigade is organised into three age groups. The youngest are the Explorers in the age range Primary one to Primary three, though this year there have been no primary ones joining at Newtonhill – though they are still welcome and anyone wishing to join should contact Fiona Leslie - contact details below.
There has been speculation that as primary one children now get homework from school there is less time for other activities! The next group is the Juniors – up to primary 7 and the oldest are the Brigaders who are of secondary school age
Competitions are an enjoyable aspect of the Brigade and the Newtonhill Brigaders team of Amy Chapman, Ailsa Hay and Erin Pirie, recently won the Aberdeen Division competition for dance with an energetic and imaginative routine involving a series of well-co-ordinated moves. Amy, Erin and Katie Work also came in a commendable third in the Bible Drama competition where the girls had to choose a drama from three given and enact it in their own way. Their topic was the Unforgiving Servant and the girls created an excellent five minutes performance. Rehearsals over the previous weeks had been challenging as the original script chosen was for a cast of 6 but only 3 could manage on the competition date, so changes were necessary– however the girls coped admirably!
The Juniors and Explorers have also been competing, with the Juniors doing an energetic and complicated “Ribbon Dance” as well as a figure marching routine and the Explorers competing in the dance contest. Competition was stiff for both groups as there were many teams involved and although they didn’t get placed this time they enjoyed taking part. As well as practicing their dancing, and figure marching the Juniors enjoy games and learning about this year’s topics of “The Suffragettes” and “Mindfulness”. In fact the list of reasons for coming along on Monday nights is almost endless and includes seeing friends, learning about Christ, and singing, doing arts and crafts and meeting their leaders. But top of the list is simply having fun!
Newtonhill Girls Brigade is well served with officers as there are seven leaders in addition to the Captain Fiona Leslie. The Kirk building is also an ideal meeting place with plenty space for activities. Any girls of any age looking for an enjoyable way to spend a Monday evening will be very welcome at the usual time for their age a group i.e. between 6.30pm and 7.30pm for Explorers and 6.45pm and 8.30pm for Juniors and Brigaders.
Report by: Colin Young
Any girls wishing to join Newtonhill Girls Brigade should contact Fiona at