The Cupar Probus Story
The Probus Club movement was formed in the UK in 1965 having its beginnings in two clubs, both created by members of Rotary Club. In 1970, Cupar Probus Club launched – one of the very first Probus Clubs in Scotland. We caught up with the club’s co-chair, Maurice Shepherd, to find out more …
Our first question was simple: what is a Probus club? Maurice explains: “PROBUS is an association of retired and semi-retired people who come together on a regular basis to meet other like minded folk in similar circumstances … to make new friends, and to maintain and expand their own interests.” He adds: “Ours is a friendly and lively social club for men in and around the Cupar area – there are no geographical limits.”
Internationally, the Probus ‘movement’ has flourished over almost 60 years. Just before lockdown, there were over 400,000 members in approximately 4,000 clubs worldwide. Around 50% of all clubs are in the UK.
Maurice adds: “The clubs – typically covering local, town or district areas – have no central governing body and offices are staffed by volunteers. Our operating costs are met by member contributions.” All clubs are non-political, non-sectarian and not for profit.
In 2020, the Cupar Club celebrated its 50th anniversary. The Club’s archive records: “We held an enrollment meeting on Thursday 29th October 1970 when 42 members were created Founders.” Eight of them went on to become future chairmen.
The anniversary landed right in the middle of the pandemic lockdown. Maurice says: “We managed to keep going thanks to holding our meetings on ZOOM.” Today, the Club is back to live meetings.
Those meetings are held on the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month at 10am at the Castlehill Community Centre, with tea, coffee and biscuits. The ‘live’ meetings have speakers, usually from outside the Club, who present talks on a wide range of subjects. Maurice says: “We also have informal ZOOM meetings on the other Wednesdays that provide more opportunities to meet and socialise with fellow members.” Currently, the club has around 40 members.
Interested in joining the Club? Non-members are always welcome to come to a few meetings before deciding to join. To do this, or if you have any other questions, please contact the Club’s Secretary, Allan Black, via this email link.
Thanks for reading.