Cherished memories of Eric Liddell and his visit to Hawick

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IN CONNECTION with the letter in last week’s paper about Eric Liddell, in the Congregational Church in Bourtree Place we have always cherished the memories of his visit to Hawick in 1931.

He came on December 20 to spend Christmas with Reverend Alexander Baxter and his wife. They had been missionaries in China and knew Eric and his parents in that country.

The Baxters came back to this country for him to become minister of the Bourtree Place church from 1927 to 1933.

Eric was receiving his ministerial training in the Scottish Congregational College in Edinburgh where he famously kept up his training by racing the buses up the hill.

It was there that all the Scottish congregational ministers were trained (including much later, my husband Stanley Britton).

In his visit here in December 1931 he took part in the morning service and so many townspeople wanted to hear him pray, read and speak that the church had to hire the town hall for the evening service.

Perhaps the present owners of the old Wellogate Manse (the big white house) would like to do what my children did when we came in 1972 – guess what room Eric Liddell slept in?

LILIAS BRITTON