Baton bearers appointed

Geoff Stranock, Caroline Campbell and Ally Hutchison
Geoff Stranock, Caroline Campbell and Ally Hutchison

A number of well-known members of the community in Montrose have been chosen to carry the baton for Her Majesty The Queen’s Baton Relay through Angus.

On June 28, the relay will make its way through several Angus towns before it reaches Montrose, where the baton will then be handed over to Aberdeenshire for the next leg of its journey in the run-up to the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

The triumphant baton bearers had to meet certain criteria – such as demonstrating a positive contribution to the lives of others through community sport – to be in the running for the honour.

Caroline Campbell, S1 and 2 coach and club secretary at Montrose Rugby Club, has been chosen to be one of the baton bearers for Angus.

Caroline has been a coach at Union Park for six years and involved in the club for 10.

She said: “I’m shocked and overwhelmed. I’m surprised that someone nominated me and that I was picked.

“I hope that, as Rugby Sevens will be one of the sports in the Commonwealth Games for the first time ever, it will encourage both boys and girls to take up rugby.

“Rugby teaches discipline and respect of your team mates, yourself and the officials.

“I am a big believer in team sports, as it teaches you to work with other people and release that everyone has different strengths and weaknesses.

“In rugby, if you don’t work together you won’t get anywhere.”

Stuart Watson, Montrose Academy S6 pupil and under-18 rugby player, will also be a baton bearer for the county.

Meanwhile, three members of Montrose Emergency Services Group (MESG) – who were nominated as a team – have also been successful.

Montrose police officer Ally Hutchison will be trading his truncheon for a baton this summer.

He said: “This is a once in a lifetime achievement.

“I feel a whole mixture of emotions – I’m nervous, but I’m excited.”

Geoff Stranock, paramedic with the Scottish Ambulance Service, said: “I’m chuffed that I will be carrying the baton through Angus.”

Scott Constantine, HM Coastguard officer, is also one of the MESG members who has been selected as a baton bearer.

Meanwhile, MESG’s annual It’s A Knockout competition will take place on June 28 to celebrate the Queen’s Baton Relay coming through Montrose.

The It’s a Commonwealth Knockout is set to take place on the field at Montrose Sports Centre, on Marine Avenue, between 1 and 4 p.m.

The baton bearers won’t find out which town in the county their 200-metre stint will be through until four weeks before the Angus leg of the relay –which takes place on Saturday, June 28.