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The Joe Murphy Column 31-05-18

The Joe Murphy Column

These past few weeks I’ve had a couple of conversations with fanciers regarding decline within the Scottish sport. If you study the race programme on the back pages of the BHW you will see that many Scottish federations are at the same race point. Last week this was just under the 200 mile mark to the Lothians while it is further into Fife, Angus and Dundee. How on earth do we not liberate TOGETHER like a combine. Surely if the all these Scottish birds coming the same way would be to our advantage. Once they get to the Firth of Forth the Midlothian; East of Scotland along with Pentland Hills birds would have dropped off at their lofts and the remainder would then travel north into their respective federations. This week you will see from John Baillie’s report that the East of Scotland; Midlothian and Almond Valley federations liberated together at Wakefield and had a great race (see reports below). Many years ago we had an amalgamation which included the majority of Scottish federations and this was a great success with (I think) 8 to 9000 birds competing. This weekend as you read this column the Scottish National Flying Club will be holding their first inland race from Buckingham so why not educate the birds prior to this national event. The Up North Combine has been doing this for years and their birds come right up the east coast with thousands of birds competing. We are coming to the time within our sport that if we don’t all go as one unit then our sport will diminish. At the present time Angus go with Dundee; we have 2 federations in Fife; then there is Almond Valley, Central Federation, North West Federation; Midlothian, Pentland Hills and Scottish Border. We need to spot all this petty infighting and think of our birds and the fanciers who are left within the sport. It is too late for the old bird racing but something can be done for the young birds before it is too late. I’m only stating what other fanciers have discussed with me if it happens only time will tell.  Now for the results forwarded from the club press officers. By the way all the best to everyone who is racing with the SNFC this weekend hope you have a good race.


Arbroath Racing Pigeon Club

From the Wakefield race flown on 19th May the convoy of 691 birds were liberated at 10-15 hours with no wind at the race point. In the Arbroath club 5 members sent 133 birds with Charlie & Glen Cameron keeping up their winning streak of 5 wins in a row. There winner was a yearling doing 1714 was a widowhood blue cock who won last week and now has 3 x 1st sections in the federation. He is inbred to the Castres of Leon Messiaen being from a self-bred grandson of the Castres when mated to a direct daughter. Castres is a member of the Barcelona Dynasty of Leon’s’ and won prizes from Barcelona 5 years in a row and is now a base pigeon at Leon’s. The next 6 positions were won by Kevin J Murphy who had a great ‘team’ performance; the 2nd club winner is sire was the Mealy Cock (Daniel Aerens) I gifted to Blackpool Charity show 2018. The dam is also a Daniel Aerens bloodlines; the 3rd club is from a Billy Bilsland cock when mated to a daughter of George & Brain Hunters famous hen ‘Kingdom Spirit’. The other birds are Daniel Aerens crosses with the exception of a Mark Gilbert cock crossed with a sister to Kingdom Spirit.

Topping the federation are the Macaulay Ferguson & Curran partnership who are also 4th 5th 8th 13th & 14th with club mate Ian Scott in 2nd 15th 16th & 17th open places. Charlie & Glen Cameron of Arbroath did very well breaking up the Forfar stranglehold winning 3rd open. Race controller Davie Glen is 6th & 19th with Federation secretary Kenny Droog & Son of Forfar in 7th 18th & 20th. Bob Baldie of the same club is 9th 10th & 11th with club mates Greig & Leggett in 12th place.

East Section is won by Charlie & Glen Cameron of Arbroath who also have 2 birds to win 9th & 10th section. Kevin J Murphy of the same club is 2nd to 7th with D & D Hay of Gourdon in 9th position.

Club Winners as follows; Forfar 467 birds; Macaulay Ferguson & Curran. Montrose 57 birds: G Campbell. Gourdon 34 birds: D & D Hay. Arbroath 133 birds; C & G Cameron


Ayrshire Federation from their 4th race of the season from Ripon on the 12th May for a race of between 143 miles to 175 miles across the membership of the federation. Jim O’Hare eventually had the convoy of 1,248 birds (a drop of 748 birds on the previous week’s race) away at 11:00 into a light north wind. The reason given for the late liberation was firstly the amount of organisations sitting at Ripon and secondly the birds from the early liberations were slower to clear than expected thus having a knock on effect on the rest of the federations. Leading the way into Ayrshire this week and missing his moment of glory, is our federation secretary Ian Noble. Ian was telling me he missed the pigeons this week as he was attending the Ayr Agricultural Show and put all his trust into his ETS system he had only just purchased this year and this was only the 2nd time he has used it. Winning 1st federation for Ian on 1473.4 is a 4 year old hen going for her first race of the year flying natural and sitting 10 days on eggs. Ian purchased this hen at Dalry HS Breeder / Buyer sale in 2014 and won 1st club Otterburn, 1st Breeder/Buyer winning £100 each for both the breeder and buyer. This hen has been consistent pigeon for Ian and has previously won 2 x 1st , 3 x 2nd  and 2 x 3rd  club’s and now 1st fed, 1st section and 1st club Ripon. As mentioned above, this hen was purchased at Dalry HS Breeder/Buyer and was bred by Tom Smith of West Kilbride. The breeding of this pigeon goes back to birds containing the blood of Dalgleish of Ecclefechan a family of pigeons Tom has crossed in with his own family that have produced many winning pigeons from club to national races for Tom over the years. Ian would like to take this opportunity to thank his good friend Davy Jamieson of East Calder for his friendship and all his advice and continual support over the years.

In 2nd, 3rd & 5th federation is Andy Barbour of Dalry HS; his 2nd federation winner on 1464.2 is a 2 year old roundabout Hardy Kruger hen. The sister to this hen scored well in the Golden Algarve One Loft Race for Andy and contains all the best of Hardy Kruger bloodlines, Churchill, Shakira, Black Power, Naomi and Vialli. The 3rd federation bird for Andy on 1463.8 is another 2 year old roundabout Hardy Kruger/Van Loon hen. This hen is no stranger to the winner’s enclosure with previous wins of 2nd club 256 birds, 2nd section 524 birds and 2nd federation 1,104 birds from Sedgefield beaten by loft mate on the trap and also 5th club, 5th section and 5th open federation Wetherby. The sire is a Van Loon full of the Planet Brothers blood bred by Galaxy Lofts. The dam is a direct daughter of one Hardy Kruger top racers “Black Soul” a son of Hardy’s champion producer “Black Power”. (A wee bird tells me that Archie McIntyre is the man who looks after Andy’s pigeon plus Archie does a lot of work for the federation i.e. he deals with any problems with ETS throughout the federation. So a very Special ‘Well done’ to Archie your efforts are very much appreciated.)

Andy Barbour 2nd, 3rd and 5th Fed

North Section sent 569 birds; winning 1st, 2nd & 3rd is Andy Barbour (Dalry HS) with velocities 1464.2, 1463.8 and 1439.6

Central Section sent 287 birds; 1st Ian Noble (Crosshouse HS) velocity 1473.4. 2nd H Pollock (Irvine HS) 1453.8 with 3rd place to W Julyan (Crosshouse HS) 1400.9

Ian Noble 1st Fed Ripon

South Section had 392 birds entered with 1st place won by Cree & Cuthbert of Whitletts & District club on 1393.6. 2nd is W Lawrence (Whitletts & District) 1379.7 and 3rd W &C Gemmell (Whitletts & District) 1373.4


Almond Valley Federation

News from Lynne Stewart with the Wakefield result flown on 19th May with 1131 birds competing liberated at 09-30 hours into a south wind. Topping the federation on 1515 yards per minute is I McLelland of Forth & Clyde club. D McBeath of Armadale is 2nd & 22nd with Colin Ross of Balerno club in 3rd place club mate Dougie Bald is 4th 6th 7th 8th 10th 11th 18th 19th 21st & 24th open. T Gavin of Armadale is 5th with Freddie Jamieson & son of East Calder are 9th & 20th open. Colin Bain of Balerno is 12th with S Fleming of Armadale is 13th & 23rd places. J Burnside of the same club is 14th & 16th with Forth & Clyde member D Stewart is in 15th place

Club winners are as follows;

Armadale sent 315 birds; D McBeath 1503.991, T Gavin 1484.039, S Fleming 1461.622, J Burnside 1458.756

Balerno sent 184 birds; C Ross 1485.113, D Bald 1484.609, 1480.981, 1477.490

Carnwath 138 birds; E R McLean 1365.844, D Hamilton & Son 1301.383, I Thomson 1253.203, W Watson 1221.347

East Calder 130 birds; F Jamieson & Son 1471.703, 1445.541, J Burnside 1436.700, F Jamieson & Son 1431.577

Forth & Clyde 228 birds; I McLelland 1515.359, D Stewart 1458.418, I McLelland 1417.010, V Couper 1407.469

West Calder 136 birds; J Bird 1440.861, 1440.191, 1423.526, 1422.872


News from Colin Bain with the Wakefield result with 8 members sending 182 birds these were liberated at 09-30 hours into a south wind. The winner is Colin Ross with a 2 year old blue cock with a velocity of 1485 he is a Staff Van Reet crossed Kit Carson from his 1st open Combine winner crossed with Bobby Carruthers. 2nd  3rd & 4th is Douglas Bald a 2 year old blue cock on 1484, his next bird is a 2 year old chequer pied hen on 1480 and his 3rd is a yearling chequer hen on 1477; once again many thanks Joe and best wishes Colin B’.

East of Scotland Federation

News from John Baillie with the results from the Wakefield race; which turned out to be another fast race with the birds liberated at 09-30 into light south east wind along with Midlothian and Almond Valley federations, thus giving the yearlings some experience of breaking out of a big convoy. Taking top spot this week is Mr & Mrs Burgess of Ormiston, with Keith Howie of Prestonpans in 2nd & 4th open positions. Jim McNeil of Tranent takes 3rd, 8th & 10th open with John Bird of Prestonpans in 5th open, Richard & Jamie Combe of Elphinstone take 6th place with John Baillie of Tranent in 7th spot. Taking the last position of 9th open we have George Veitch of East Saltoun.

Prestonpans HC, winning this week and taking 2nd spot is Keith Howie, formally of Whitecraigs, where he flew with his father winning many SNFC positions over the years. Both birds are yearlings and are bred from a pair of birds bought from Hawkins and Evans these being the best of the Vandenabeele’s. Taking 3rd club is John Bird with his 2 year old cock, which previously won 3rd was fed from Tow Law earlier in the year. This cocks breeding is Herman Ceusters and his parents were purchased from Premier Lofts. This cock scored from the SNFC Ypres race in 2017, winning 12th section B and 20th open. Overall returns were good many thanks once again Joe yours John B’.

Fife Federation

News from Geordie Todd with the result of the Wakefield race flown on 19th May with the 2081 birds liberated at 09-45 hours into a light south west wind. The federation top 10 places are as follows; D Baldie St Andrews is 1st 2nd 3rd 5th & 6th with club mate R Anderson in 4th spot. Another St Andrews member John Harcus is 7th with Kennoway’s Jocky Scott in 8th place just ahead of Brian Chalmers of the same club who is 9th & 10th.

East section had Methilhaven club sending 129 birds; Kennoway 236 birds; Tayport 60 birds; St Andrews 114 birds; Leven 165 birds the east section result is the same as the top 10 above. Centre Section had Glenrothes sending 248 birds with Novar entry 194 birds. 1st x 2 places go to Turpie & McCord of Glenrothes in fact all the places are won by this club. Brian Kinnear is 3rd & 8th with Dean Bridges in 4th to 7th plus 10th section. Mick McMurchie squeezes in at 9th position.

West section birdage as follows; Crossgates 340; Dunfermline 183, Lochgelly 213; Perth 199; S Donaldson of Perth takes the first 5 places with another in 10th spot. Jock Brockie of Lochgelly is 6th with G Anderson of Perth taking 7th to 9th places.



News from David Kennedy who writes; from the Wakefield old bird race 13 members sent 183 birds. Taking this weeks red card is federation President /Secretary Gordon Turnbull BEM. Gordon timed a Louella Jan Aarden doing a velocity of 1465 ypm this yearling cock was sitting on three day eggs. 2nd place goes to Frank Mitchell who timed a 2 year old roundabout cock doing a velocity of 1462 ypm. The bloodlines being from a grandson of the late Jock Traill’s 1st open Nantes SNFC crossed 1st open Niort SNFC. The 3rd ticket goes to a new partnership in the club this year O’Reilly and Park. Both Mick and Hamish are former club members and they timed a yearling late bred roundabout hen doing a velocity of 1462 ypm. This bird was bred by Walker & David Kennedy Loft 2 with the bloodlines being Louella Jan Aarden crossed George Atkinson of Market Weighton. Gordon Turnbull BEM finishes a good day winning the club nomination and 2 bird competition. Cheers Joe yours David’.

Pentland Hills and New Lothian RPC

News from Andy Miller who informs us that they held their 5th race of the 2018 season from Wakefield a distance of 163-175 miles for the members; race controller Bobby Graham gave the go ahead to liberate at 09-30 hours into a light south east wind with 14 clubs sent 3207 birds and a fast race was expected & winning 1st New Lothian and federation is passed national winner Jocky Robertson who timed his yearling roundabout cock on 1618 velocity. The sire of the winner was bred by Dougie Barnes from Crossgates in Fife and the dam from the Dutch winning loft of Theo De Krut. A good race was experienced with 95% returns reported by the membership.  2nd & 4th open are Willie Pryde & son John of Arniston club with L Mitchell of Castlebrae in 3rd & 7th open positions. 5th & 6th places go to Brown & Black of Woodburn with T Nolan & son winning 8th & 9th

Last of Brown & Black federation winners

Club Winners are as follows;

Arniston 271 birds; 1st 2nd & 3rd W Pryde & son

Castlebrae 122 birds; 1st & 2nd L Mitchell 3rd Willis

Woodburn 162 birds; 1st & 2nd Brown & Black 3rd Allen

Danderhall 719 birds; 1st & 2nd Nolan 3rd Porter

Sighthill 167 birds; 1st & 2nd Girdwood 3rd Miller

Edinburgh Premier 218birds; 1st Dick 2nd & 3rd Gilchrist

Edinburgh West 155 birds; 1st & 2nd C Bennett 3rd Verth

Easthouses 259 birds; 1st Bertram 2nd Ferguson 3rd Sanderson

Bonnyrigg 271 birds; 1st Watson 2nd Neill 3rd Stark

Loanhead 134 birds; 1st Simpson 2nd Anderson 3rd Murray

Rosewell 89 birds; 1st   Cunningham & Ness 2nd G Tytler 3rd W Tytler

Peebles   37 birds;

Traprain 519 birds; 1st 2nd & 3rd Thomson

New Lothian 84 birds;


New Lothian RPC had 66 lofts sending 1927 birds to Wakefield liberated at 09-30 hours into a south east wind. Taking the number one spot winning £182 is John Robertson of New Lothian. Willie Pryde & son John from Arniston are 2nd & 4th winning £296. L Mitchell of Castlebrae is 3rd & 7th, with the Brown & Black partnership from Woodburn in 5th & 6th places T Nolan & son of Danderhall club are 8th & 9th with D & J Allen of Woodburn wining the 10th open place.

North of Scotland Federation

Had 75 members sending 1650 birds to Alnwick liberated into a blue sky with

No wind at the race point. Topping the federation and 1st west section is J Abel of Devern Valley club, club mates Fulton & Ritchie are 2nd 3rd 8 & 21st open and 2nd 3rd 5th & 7th west section. 4th west section and open is I Coull of Buckie & District With G Findlay of Peterhead & District winning 1st 2nd 5th 6th east section and 5th 6th 10th & 11th open. C McRae of Fraserburgh & District is 3rd east section 7th open with club mate J (Ian) Gibb in 4th section 9th open. R Barclay of Fraserburgh West End club is 7th & 13th east section 12th & 20th open. B Geddes of Fraserburgh & District is 8th & 9th east section 13th & 14th open with A Higgins of Fraserburgh West End club In 10th east section 15th open Name sake R Higgins takes the next 2 places to win 11th & 12th east section 16th & 17th open. The East section had 35 members sending 936 birds. The west section had 40 members sending 714 birds; I’ve covered the top 7 places above so start with A Milne of Devern Valley club In 8th west section 32nd open with club mate A Wilson winning 9th & 10th section 33rd & 34th open. West Section had 39 members sending 724 birds;

 Clubs First Bird

Devern Valley winner J Abel; Buckie & District winner I Coull; Peterhead & District winner G Findlay; Fraserburgh & District winner C McRae. Fraserburgh West End winner R Barclay; Inverurie winner J S Robertson; Keith winner G R Duncan; Elgin & District winner W Ritchie. Well done to J Able on topping the federation and also well done to G Findlay on winning the East section; cheers Joe yours George Duthie race secretary.

Buckie & District

News from Gavin Russel who informs us the Alnwick birds were liberated at 08.00 into a light south west wind. Winning 1st club 4th west section 4th fed is Ian Coull with a velocity of 1672. He timed a 4 year old blue bar hen Vandenabeele flying roundabout. Ian is also 2nd club doing 1588 with a 2 year old blue bar cock from Scott Irvine of Brydekirk flying roundabout. 3rd club is Davie Barrie on 1570 with a 2 year old dark chequer hen a Joe Shore from John Mair flying natural. A good fast race Joe with excellent returns yours Gavin’.

Good SNFC Birds

This week is start with the well-known loft of Willie Kinnear & Son Barry of Gilmerton in Edinburgh. Their blue bar cock SU14P 1821 5 national diplomas to his credit; In 2015 as a yearling he won 133rd open (no section prize) from Eastbourne flying 383 miles. Then in 2016 he won twice being 30th section B 75th open from Littlehampton a distance of 368 miles, he was then sent to Ypres a distance of 429 miles and he won 32nd section B 56th open. In 2017 he again won twice this time from Bedhampton a distance of 360 miles to gain 92nd section B 343rd open he was then set up for Ypres and he won 45th section B 139th open thus he now requires one more section prize from over the channel to gain his Silver Award and we wish the Kinnear partnership all the best in 2018. We move over the Firth of Forth to the Leven loft of Jimmy Mackie who has a blue bar cock SU13F 4056 that has won 5 times in the Scottish national. In 2015 he won 7th section C 29th open from Billericay a distance of 347 miles; he was then sent to Portsmouth a distance of 378 miles and he won 19th section C 90th open. Then in 2016 he again done the double winning from Buckingham a distance of 301 miles to gain 415th open but no section prize, he then went to Littlehampton a distance of 386 miles and won 100th section C 412th open. Then last year he was sent the Falaise race and won 7th section C 24th open to gain his 5th national diploma.  A few miles up the road to the village of Kennoway we come to past 1st open SNFC Roye winner Jock Scott who has a chequer cock SU15F 2412 who has won 4 times in the national. In 2016 he won twice firstly from Littlehampton a distance of 388 miles he won 112th section C but no open position. He then went to Ypres a distance of 444 miles and he won 9th section C 19th open. In 2017 he again won twice with the first of these from Buckingham a distance of 303 miles to gain 19th section C 67th open a 14 days later he was then sent to Bedhampton a distance of 380 miles and he won 36th section C 107th open.   We now come to the loft of Peter Keogh whose chequer pied hen SU15CA20 has won 4 national diplomas. In 2016 she won 49th section D 406th open from Littlehampton flying 376 miles. Then in 2017 she won 3 times being 23rd  section D 220th open from Buckingham a distance of 291 miles; she was then into the Bedhampton race a distance of 367 miles and won 79th section D but No open prize. She was then sent to Ypres a distance of 440 miles and she won 9th section D 68th open. To all the above fanciers may I wish you all the best with your birds this year starting with the first inland national this weekend 2nd June, good luck to everyone who enters?

Joe’s Joke

A grieving woman faints from shock after reading an email she never expected.

A Minneapolis couple decided to go to Florida to thaw out during a particularly icy winter. They decided to stay at the same hotel were they spent their honeymoon 20 years earlier. Because of hectic schedules, it was difficult to coordinate their travel plans. So, husband left Minneapolis and flew down to Florida on the Thursday with his wife flying down the next day. The husband checked into the hotel there was a computer in his room so he decided to send an email to his wife. However, he accidently left out one letter in her email address ?and without realizing his error, sent the email.

Meanwhile somewhere in Houston, a widow had just returned home after her husband’s funeral. He was a minister who was called home to glory following a heart attack. The widow decided to check her email expecting messages from relatives and friends. After reading the first message she screamed and fainted. Her son rushed into the room and found his mother lying on the floor and saw the computer screen which read;

To; My loving wife

Subject; I’ve Arrived

Date; 1st June 2018

I know you are surprised to hear from me. They have computers here now and you are allowed to send emails to your loved ones.  I’ve just arrived and have been checked in. I see that everything has been prepared for your arrival tomorrow. Looking forward to seeing you and hope your journey is as uneventful as mine was. PS sure is hot down here!


Please continue to keep the news flowing; to Joe Murphy Mystical Rose Cottage 2 Flutorum Avenue Thornton by Kirkcaldy KY1 4BD or phone 01592 770331 or Email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. REMEMBER THE J IN THE MIDDLE or log onto and - Pigeon Racing the Basics! Who wish my weekly contribution portfolio on pigeon topics from Scotland

© Compiled by Joe Murphy