Saturday, 3 January 2015

Evening all,
I hope you all had a fabulous Christmas and new year.  I did.
Any resolutions?  Or should I say any unique resolutions?  I would love to say I have resolved to learn to play the ukulele however no such resolution here.

Anything from you all?

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Benefit conference 2014

Evening all
Home at last from another great benefit conference.  There were speakers, discussions, debates.  Food, drink and dancing.  John and Gary (and guest singers) entertained us until the very early hours with music and singing.

I learned that unlike our national president, I cannot survive on 3 hours sleep.  😞😴

photos to follow folks when I work out how to upload.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Scottish benefit conference 3 days away

Evening all,
It almost time for the Scottish benefit conference and things just wouldn't be right if there wasn't snow forecast.
Here's hoping it stays away until we all arrive.

Saturday, 15 November 2014

IRRV Scottish Association Annual Conference 2014

Evening all

Apologies for the delay in this post.

The annual conference in September saw the association return to the fabulous setting of Crieff Hydro.  Students old and new joined the many professionals for a jam packed 2 days.

The usual Golf tournament saw our Association president have an 'almost' hole in 1.
He facebooked "How close to a hole in one! Might be in the running for closest to the pin! Thanks CIVICA for another great day at Crieff and I wasn't the bandit this year!"

We had a number of entrants to the IRRV awards this year and they put on an excellent Scottish Awards village.

In the end Glasgow City Council were presented with the award during the gala dinner.  I am sure it was well taken care off while we were all dancing the night away.

Lets not forget the students.  Following success in their exams a number of students received their certificates.  Well done one and all.
More soon.  Paula

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Scottish Association AGM 2013

A large audience of over 100 attended the 2013 IRRV Scottish Association AGM at Falkirk Council Chambers.

There were presentations on the Council Tax Reduction Scheme from Robin Haynes of Scottish Government and retiring Scottish Association President Jim McCafferty and on the Scottish Welfare Fund from Andrew Collinge of Clackmannanshire Council and Gary Smith of Scottish Borders Council.

Newly elected IRRV Scottish Association President Les Robertson made a presentation to Deirdre Docherty of West Lothian Council who is subject prize winner in rating at Level 3 of the IRRV professional qualification.

The following were elected to the IRRV Scottish Association Executive at the AGM:


IAN BALLANCE (Hon Auditor)
FRASER MACPHERSON (Ex officio – IRRV staff)

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

IRRV Scottish Conference 2012 - Golf competition

The trusty golfers of the IRRV Scottish Association and partner organisations again took to the golf course in advance of Scottish Conference 2012. As usual, the standard of play was variable, with the now customary rivalry and banter being very much the order of the day.

Winners are listed and pictured below, with Jon Gibbs of Civica and Jim McCafferty, Scottish Association President. Many thanks once again to Civica for sponsoring the golf competition.

Ladies Trophy winner - Joy Mackenzie, Fife Council

The Longest Drive winner - Reg Peat, Scottish Water

Nearest the Pin winner - George Thomas, Scott & Co (Sheriff Officers)

3rd place - Sandy Brown, retired member, formerly Scottish Borders Council and former Scottish Association President.

Runner up - Donald Oljinek, Dundee City Council

Winner 2012 - Jacek Nowak, Angus Council
Once again, in addition to his obvious golfing prowess, Jacek must get a special mention and acknowledgement of his trademark tartan trousers....!! A sporting fashionista.....

Well done to all who played!!

Thursday, 8 September 2011

IRRV Scottish Conference 2011

Scottish Revenues, Benefits and Valuation practitioners once again flocked to the popular Crieff Hydro Hotel for the annual IRRV Scottish Association Conference. The conference was hugely successful and received positive feedback in the evaluation forms received, with praise for speakers, subject matter, exhibition, gala dinner, venue and overall experience.

A selection of photos can be found below - in addition, please note that the full collection of photographs from the event can be viewed by clicking on the title link.

An unusually serious looking National President, Kerry Macdermott, and Scottish President, Jim McCafferty, embark on their tour of the awards village.
National and Scottish Presidents (looking decidedly happier now) with the overall Scottish prizewinners - Dumfries and Galloway - WELL DONE!!!
The group of successful students, who collected their certificates at conference (NB: individual photos can be accessed from the title link). Sincere apologies for the lack of golf competition photos this year, however regrettably none of the golfers daft enough to brave the rain were forward thinking enough to also take a camera with them!! However - congratulations to the following:

Commercial prize - George Scott (Scott & Co)
Nearest The Pin - Dave Clarke (Team Netsol)
Longest Drive - Bill Loughrey (Civica)
Ladies Champion - Eileen Rowand (Fife)

3rd Place - Bob Mackay (Edinburgh)
2nd Place - Fergus Walker (Argyll & Bute)
Men’s Champion - Jacek Nowak (Angus)

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Presentation to immediate Past President 2011

At the Scottish Association Executive meeting on 21 April 2011, immediate Past President Brian Jeffrey was presented with a gift, to mark the end of his two-year term of office.

Brian is pictured below (front row second right) with some colleagues from the Scottish Association Executive.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

IRRV Scottish Benefits Conference

The Scottish Association held a very successful benefits conference at Crieff Hydro on 08 and 09 March 2011.... "The Benefits Debate - moving forward".

As many of you will know, this event is traditionally held in early December each year, however the severe wintery weather in December 2010 unfortunately forced these plans to be changed and the conference was rescheduled for March 2011. As you can see from the picture below, despite moving three months closer to summer (OK, granted I am referring to scottish summer!), the weather hadn't really improved significantly!!! Crieff Hydro provided a snowy picture postcard setting and the conference was a great success, with delegates enjoying the opportunity to hear informative and topical presentations covering a range of benefit and fraud related issues.
Scottish Benefits conference is sad to bid farewell to Paul Howarth of DWP who has been a great supporter of the event for a number of years and whose frank and honest presentations have always been particularly welcomed by delegates. Paul is leaving DWP later this year, so his attendance at benefits conference was to be his last in this capacity. His annual "quiz" will be greatly missed too I'm sure! Paul is pictured below (far right) with Scottish Association President Jim McCafferty (far left) and National President Kerry Macdermott. We wish Paul all the very best in his future pursuits.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

IRRV Scotland AGM 2011

IRRV Scottish Association held its Annual General Meeting in Municipal Chambers Falkirk on 22 February 2011. Outgoing President Brian Jeffrey handed over after his two year reign to new President Jim McCafferty of West Lothian Council (pictured below). Jim is also a tutor on the college course for IRRV students and is a well known figure in revenues and benefits circles.There was an excellent turnout for this event with over 85 attendees including a number of students who had been successful in the recent examinations (despite the interruptions due to bad weather in December). They are photographed below with the new President. Congratulations and very well done to all!!
The IRRV Scottish Association Executive has had a "makeover" with some very welcome new faces joining the fold. Welcome to new members Lesley Henderson, Paul Ferguson and Joan Hewton. Pictured below are the members of the executive who were present at the AGM (missing from photo are Hillary Kelly, Lesley Henderson, Paul Ferguson and Billy Phillips).
It is fitting to take the opportunity to say a BIG thank you to members who have stepped down from the Exec in the last year - Catherine Black and Ann Bain - thank you for your contributions.

Friday, 26 November 2010

Scottish Association Forum and karaoke

IRRV Scottish Association members once again headed to Dumfries in November 2010 for the Revenues and Benefits forum, followed by an evening of Chinese buffet and questionable karaoke talent.
In true time honoured tradition, there was the usual wrestle with the chinese TV and karaoke discs, in an attempt to get the system up and running (are we the ONLY people who ever use it?) before we broke with tradition and headed for a proper karaoke bar in town - why have we never explored that before...?
Pictured below are Scottish President Brian Jeffrey and National President Kerry Macdermott belting out very enthusiastic rendition of Daydream Believer....!!
Dumfries was suitably impressed I'm sure....

Friday, 25 June 2010

IRRV Forum presentation

Friends and colleagues wished Jim Littlejohn of Falkirk Council all the very best on his retirement, after a long standing contribution to the Revenues and Benefits Forum in Scotland. Jim was also a former Secretary to the then Scottish Branch of IRRV.

He is pictured below receiving a presentation from Scottish Association President Brian Jeffrey at a forum meeting.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Scottish Association AGM 2010

The IRRV Scottish Association’s Annual General Meeting for 2010 took place on Thursday 25th February 2010 at the Municipal Chambers, Falkirk and included a complimentary half day seminar and lunch.
As well as the formal AGM business, attendees enjoyed informative presentations on:
* Corporate Visiting System – a presentation by Dundee City Council, winner of the IRRV Scottish Performance Award in 2009.
* IRRV Committee of Inquiry into local taxation in Scotland.
* Debt in Scotland - an overview of the debt issue in Scotland, following the 2009 Citizen Advice Scotland report “Drowning in Debt.”
Scottish students achieving success in the December 2009 examination session were also presented with their certificates by Scottish Association President, Brian Jeffrey (below). Congratulations to all.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

IRRV Scottish President's Christmas Reception

The Scottish President, Brian Jeffrey, hosted an excellent evening at the Royal Scots Club in Edinburgh on 9th December 2009, attended by IRRV members, colleagues, partners and friends.
Brian is pictured below with National President Geoff Fisher.
(The full set of photos can be accessed from the title link.)

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Scottish Benefits Conference

The Scottish Benefits and Fraud Conference was held at Crieff on 2nd and 3rd December 2009 and delegates enjoyed a wide ranging variety of presentations, covering topical issues and updates.
Attendees enjoyed the usual Christmas themed social evening on the Wednesday evening. Party hats and streamers a-plenty, a great time was had by all, as evidenced by some SLAIOG colleagues below:

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Annual Scottish Association karaoke Chinese!

The evening of Thursday 26 November 2009 was a memorable occasion, when IRRV Scottish Association members and friends let their hair down after the joint association meeting and Revenues & Benefits Forum in Dumfries for the now infamous annual karaoke chinese event.

As can be seen (but fortunately not heard!!) from the pictures, attendees were in fine voice and belted out a selection of well known numbers into the wee small hours.....!! Our Scottish Association President, Brian Jeffrey, was a particularly keen singer this year....... Shortly after this picture was taken, Geoff Fisher, National President led the singing with a rousing version of The Lambeth Walk!!

Another great night had by all.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

IRRV National Conference 2009

It was terrific to see not one, but TWO Scottish winners at the national IRRV Performance Awards 2009!!!

Glasgow City Council were WINNERS in the category of Most Improved Council:

and Dumfries and Galloway Council were WINNERS in the category of Excellence in Social Inclusion:

Dumfries and Galloway were also Highly Commended in the Revenues Team of the Year category.

A huge congratulations to our two Scottish winners and commisserations but very well done on reaching the finals to the other Scottish finalists.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Scottish Conference 2009

The IRRV Scottish Conference 2009 took place on 2nd and 3rd September, once again returning to the beautiful surroundings of Crieff in Perth and Kinross.
A highlight from the event was attendance by MSPs from the four main parties:

The institute was grateful once again to receive great support from many sponsors and exhibitors. Main conference sponsors were Gandlake:

The provost of Perth and Kinross, Cllr Dr John Hulbert, gave the Civic Welcome. He is pictured here with National President, Julie Holden, and Scottish Association President, Brian Jeffrey:

For more conference photos, including exhibitors, delegates and speakers, please click on the title link above this article.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Scottish Conference 2009 - Performance Awards

Scottish Conference 2009 saw an impressive array of performance award entries being showcased in our awards village, with a number of Scottish authorities also being successful in reaching the finalist stage in the national IRRV Performance Awards.
The winner of the "Best in Scotland" performance award was Dundee City Council. Julie Holden, National President, is pictured below with Brenda Miller and Jane Crawford from Dundee.
GOOD LUCK to all Scottish finalists going to Bournemouth.
Please click on the title link above for photos of all the awards village entrants.

Scottish Conference 2009 - student presentation

The achievements of successful IRRV students were recognised in a presentation ceremony at Scottish Conference 2009. They are pictured below after receiving their certificates from National President, Julie Holden, and Scottish Association President, Brian Jeffrey.
Congratulations to all - very well done!!

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Former Presidents Dinner

The eve of Scottish Conference 2009 saw a very distinguished gathering in the form of former Scottish Association Presidents and guests. This included David Shepherd, who was also National President in 1968. Back row: David Magor (Chief Executive), David Shepherd, Alan Henry, Roy Paterson, Brian Jeffrey (Scottish President), Ian Ballance, Eric Geddes, Sandy Brown.

Front row: Mrs Susan Paterson, Hillary Kelly, Ron Skinner, Julie Holden (National President), Mrs Jaye Skinner

Scottish Conference 2009 - Golf

The traditional pre conference golf competition once again took place in 2009, sponsored by Civica OPEN Revenues, with some talented golfers (and some less talented but very enthusiastic!) making their way round 18 holes of Crieff Golf Club. The weather was glorious for approximately 3/4 of the way round, however all of the groups were hit by the torrential downpour around the 14th to 18th holes. Spirits remained high nonetheless and all groups completed the course - the only slight disappointment of the heavy rain being the fact that Jacek Nowak's wonderful "polish tartan" trousers were unfortunately covered up by waterproofs for the last few holes!!!
Fergus Walker of Argyl and Bute Council was the worthy winner and was presented with the impressive silverware at the Gala Dinner at Conference. For more golf photos, please click on the title link above this article.

Monday, 31 August 2009

Sandy McConachie retirement

Sandy McConachie from Grampian Valuation Joint Board retired on 31 August 2009, after 42 years uninterupted service, having been employed by the Valuation Authority under Aberdeen Corporation, Grampian Regional Council and currently GVJB.
Sandy has been a member of the IRRV since 1996 but it is now time (in his words) for him to "hang up his parchment"! Sandy has been a great supporter of IRRV and our Scottish Conference and has spoken at the event on a number of occasions.
Sandy is pictured above with Councillor Jackie Dunbar, Depute Convener of the Grampian Valuation Joint Board and Depute Provost of the City of Aberdeen. She is presenting an inscribed quaich, which was part of Sandy's retirement presentation from the Board.
Friends and colleagues wish him all the very best in his retirement.

Monday, 6 July 2009

National President's Reception

London Transport Museum was the venue for our National President Julie Holden's Annual Reception on Monday 6th July 2009. As is customary in any social gatherings, Scotland was well represented with a number of our association members attending the event.

Friday, 26 June 2009

Revenues and Benefits Forum farewell

Forum members bid a fond farewell to a familiar face at the Revenues and Benefits forum meeting in Tillicoultry on 26 June 2009.Don Catteral has been a strong supporter of the Forum over the years and a presentation was made to mark his impending retiral from Comhairle nan Eilean Siar.
Don is pictured here (second left) with Forum and Exec members Jim McCafferty, Bob Mackay and Les Robertson.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

See our "NEW" archive material

With grateful thanks to Ron Skinner for digging back in his archives, you can now view a number of "new" archive posts.
Who'd have thought this Blog had been going since way back in the 80's???!!
Please do take a look back in time.... you may even spot a familiar face or two from yesteryear....
This is most definitely NOT an April fool.....

Friday, 27 March 2009

IRRV Revenues and Benefits Forum

The Scottish Revenues and Benefits Forum in Lothian Chambers, Edinburgh on 27 March 2009, marked the end of another era - Alison Barrett, Revenues Manager at Aberdeenshire Council, is retiring at the end of the month.
Alison has been a regular attendee and contributor to the Forum and was a valued member of the Scottish Association Executive. Alison was presented with a gift in recognition of her many years of service.
Pictured below is Alison, along with Scottish Association President, Brian Jeffrey.