“what the papers say”?

Daily record=Sep 17 2010 By Amy Devine ,Former Black Watch soldier looking for volunteers to take part in charity trek in memory of Old Firm greats ,A FORMER Black Watch sergeant is calling on football fans to join him on a 100-mile desert trek – in a kilt. Footie-mad Jock McInnes, 54, will set off on a march across Mongolia’s Gobi Desert in honour of sporting legends Jimmy Johnstone and Davie Cooper. The adventurer, from Scone in Perthshire, hopes to raise more than £10,000 for charity with the two-week trek. And he is searching for six Rangers, Celtic and Motherwell fans to step up to the challenge. The grandad, who has scaled Mount Kilimanjaro in a kilt, said: “I want to bring fans together in memory of two great players who are sadly no longer with us. “It will be a celebration of Scottish football as well as a great way to raise cash for deserving charities.” Funds from the event will go to motor neuronScotland, the Celtic winger.  Was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2001 and died in 2006. Cash will also go to the Davie Cooper Centre in Clydebank named after the Rangers and Motherwell star that died of a brain haemorrhage in 1995. Planning permission was granted this week for the venture, which will provide play and respite facilities for children with disabilities. Jock said former Rangers winger Willie Henderson came up with the idea but was forced out of taking part by an injury. The party will set off on the first leg of the journey at half-time at the Euro 2012 qualifier between Scotland and the Czech Republic at Hampden next September. Each member needs to raise at least £2000 to take part in the trip. East Fife fan Jock will lead the group from the Eagle Valley to the Ongi Temple. They will stay in Mongolian communities as they go.  He said: “Each one of us has to be fit enough to walk long distances every day and carry a day-sack on our backs. “I’m looking for people who will respect Mongolian culture and be interested in teaching the locals a bit about Scotland too

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Jock McInnes ready for Gobi Desert trek, It’s just a few weeks since one of Perthshire’s best-known fund-raisers completed the gruelling ascent of Europe’s highest mountain and pledged to take some time out to rest.

The Gobi Desert.

By Mark Mackay .Published in the Courier: Perthshire>18.10.10  

Article search  However, former Black Watch soldier Jock McInnes, from Scone, has now admitted he’s already itching for a new challenge — and he’s again set himself a whopper. Jock McInnes. The 53-year-old grandfather — now well known for his kilted feats of endurance having raised more than £1m for charities over the years — scaled the 4500-metre Mount Elbrus in Russia in aid of the Bravehearts Children’s Trust. Though proud to have completed the climb, Jock said, “I am never doing anything like again.”However, in deciding to lead a group of kind-hearted football fans on a 100-mile trek through the Gobi Desert in Mongolia, he’s hardly taking it easy. Jock is organising a “once-in-a-lifetime” expedition featuring supporters of Rangers, Celtic and Motherwell, with two very worthy charities set to benefit. “We’ll be raising funds for the davie Cooper Centre for young adults with learning difficulties and the >Motor Neuron Association Scotland,” he said. “Both the teams and the two charities have links to legends of the game in Davie Cooper and ‘Jinky’ Jimmy Johnston. “I’ve already got 13 volunteers to come on board but I’m still looking for more.”Ideally I’d like to take ten supporters of each team on the walk.” It promises to be an exciting trip as what is sure to be an arduous slog through the desert will be only part of what’s in store for the participants. Jock has a film company interested in following the team on their Gobi Desert challenge and there may also be the chance to play a game of football at the Mongolian national stadium against a Mongolian team. And he admitted he just can’t wait to embark upon his next adventure.”I’ve taken part in many expeditions myself over the years but I’ve never organised my own trip,” he said. “It’s incredibly exciting and I hope that there are plenty of folk out there who would like to join me on my latest adventure.”In this present financial climate, charities need all the help we can muster.” Anyone who would like to join Jock and take on the challenge can visit http://www.jockmcinnes.wordpress.com.The team will be heading out with expedition and race organisers who specialise in providing quality experiences in some of the world’s remotest locations. They launched the Gobi Challenge in 2003.

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Nicola Findlay -East Kilbride News-Denis

A CHARITY trek across the Gobi desert will be the “trip of a lifetime” for a St Leonards dad-of-two.

Denis Griffin, 47, will take part in the gruelling 10-day, 100 mile trek as part of a 30 strong team made up of Celtic, Rangers and Motherwell supporters. The money raised from the trek next September will be split between the two charities, MND Scotland and The Davie Cooper Centre Clydebank. The charities have been chosen because of their links with Jimmy Johnston, who died of Motor Neuron Disease and Davie Cooper who died of a brain aneurysm. Celtic fan Denis climbed Ben Nevis for charity a few months ago and was looking for his next challenge when he came across an article about the Gobi Desert challenge. Jock McInnes, who is organising the event, has already raised over £1 million for charity. And Denis is hoping to raise the £2000 needed to go on the trek with a cabaret night in March next year. Denis told the News: “The biggest part of the trip for me is about raising awareness of the two charities and raising as much money as possible. “I am really hoping the whole of East Kilbride and local businesses will get behind us. “My father-in-law, Bobby Murdoch, played with Jimmy Johnston at Celtic and I met Jimmy a few times. “It is the first time the three football teams have joined together like this and it really will be the trip of a lifetime.” Supporting Denis will be his wife Kathleen and children Rachel, 18 and John, 15. Denis continued: “I had just completed the Ben Nevis challenge and I wondered what I was going to do next. “I read an article about Jock looking for volunteers to go to the Gobi Desert in Mongolia and I said to myself “that’s it”. It was a spur of the moment decision. “I met my wife for dinner that night and told her what I was going to do. “https://jockmcinnes.files.wordpress.com/2010/10/tops-035.jpg”><img class="alignright size-medium wp-image-404" title="tops 035" src="https://jockmcinnes.files.wordpress.com/2010/10/“It came as a bit of a surprise but she and my children have really got behind me.” Denis is also being well supported by friends and his work colleagues at printers TNT. One of his work mates recently did a 100 minute sponsored silence raising £400. Denis has been busy getting into shape for the trek which will require both fitness and stamina. “It is not going to be easy and I have started training,” he said. “I am going up Ben Lomond and Ben Arthur and will be going to the gym and swimming because I really need to get into shape. “It’s not only the hear but also the altitude that we will need to deal with.” Before setting out on the trek a football game organised in the 20,000 seated Mongolian National Stadium against a local Mongolian team. There has never been a British player set foot on that park so the Scottish volunteers will be the first. Denis and the rest of the fundraisers will be staying with the country’s Nomads to get a real taste of Mongolian culture.
They are also planning on taking a little Scottish culture to the Gobi by wearing kilts. The 30 strong team will leave for Mongolia at half time on the day of the Scotland versus Czechoslovakia World Cup qualifier at Hampden. The Charity Cabaret night, which has been organised by MC Stevie Grassie, will be held at The Parkville Hotel in Blantyre on Friday March 4. Owner Harry Hood has kindly given the venue for free and artists are performing free of charge. Denis is also looking for local businesses to come forward with raffle prizes fir the night. He is also organising a sponsored family walk around Millport in May. More information can be found at the charity blog jockmcinnes.worldpress.com. To contact Denis email denis@bobbymurdoch.co.uk well done Denis great article

Perthshire advertiser 11/1/11

Scone’s Jock ready for Asian football encounter

Jan 11 2011 by Greg Christison, Perthshire Advertiser Tuesday

A GROUP of intrepid football fanatics led by a Perthshire adventurer are preparing for the biggest game of their lives – in Asia.

Scone charity champion Jock McInnes, who has raised over £1 million over the last 20 years for good causes, will head up a 100-mile excursion across Mongolia’s Gobi desert.

The fundraising trip, the brainchild of Rangers legend Willie Henderson, will see sets of football fans from across Scotland come together to raise vital funds for two charities with links to Scotland’s two biggest football clubs. AdventureAfter taking charge of the trek following Mr Henderson’s forced withdrawal, as the PA reported on September 10, Mr McInnes revealed that those embarking on the Asian adventure will take on Mongolian <a nk1" href="http://www.perthshireadvertiser.co.uk/perthshire-news/local-news-perthshire/perthshire/2011/01/11/scone-s-jock-ready-for-asian-football-encounter-73103-27960865/#&quot; target="undefinedleague side Mazaalai FC in a tough fund-raising encounter.Speaking to the PA yesterday, Mr McInnes, who has named the team ‘Gobi United FC’, explained the guys have vowed to turn out in their kilts for the match.

And he claimed they were feeling optimistic about their chances of success at the 20,000-seater stadium.“We are all pretty fit, our doctor used to play for Stirling Albion and a lot of the lads play amateur football,” the 55-year-old said.“I am feeling really positive about the game.”Set to wave goodbye to Scotland during the half-time break in Scotland’s European Championship qualifier against the Czech Republic on September 3, the team’s fortnight-long trek will take in the country’s challenging landscapes.

“The terrain is all very different,” Mr McInnes continued. “We will cross the highest sand dunes in the world, river beds and even green areas. “It is so remote and we will be staying in tents with Mongolian tribes, it really will be a trip of a lifetime.” Part of the cash raised from the event will go towards Clydebank’s Davie Cooper Centre, named after the late Rangers and Scotland star, which offers support to children and young adults with special needs. The rest of the proceeds will benefit Motor Neurone Disease Scotland, a charity favoured by the family of former Celtic star Jimmy ‘Jinky’ Johnstone, who tragically passed away from the illness in 2006.

Delighted that his fund-raising dream will be fulfilled, span> praised the adventurers’ efforts.“I support Jock and his team one hundred per cent,” he said.“I would dearly like to be on the plane with him and his team but work commitments don’t allow.“What they are doing for two Scottish football legends is very commendable.”

With the match expected to attract at least 3000 fans, the visit has already sparked interest from Mongolian sports television channel C Sports, which is keen to cover the event.Encouraging local businesses to get involved, Mr McInnes, who will manage the side, added: “I’d love somebody to step in and give us a good sponsor for the front of our shirts.”For more information, to donate or to discuss sponsorship of the match shirts, contact Jock McInnes at abseil@hotmail.co.uk.

Glasgow herald 8/2/11-EXCLUSIVE JASPER HAMILL IT
Mongolian delegation take steppes to trade links david SCOTT: Well known in Mongolia for his charity work.
is an area best known for being one of the most remote places in the world, once ruled by Genghis Khan and home to the Gobi Desert.Now Mongolia is to send its first official delegation to Scotland in a bid to forge trade links and cement political relations between the two countries.Two of the central Asian nation’s top diplomats will fly from the London embassy to meet politicians at Holyrood and get a taste of Scottish culture.Bulgaa Altangerel, Mongolia’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, and Bat-Erdene Chinuukhei, the First Secretary of Political Affairs, will be in Scotland for three days, during which they will tour Glasgow, Stirling and Edinburgh, as well as the Scottish countryside.
After working closely with the embassy in London, it seemed logical to arrange similar meetings in Scotland
The trip was suggested by David Scott, 37, an expedition organiser from Newton Mearns, near Glasgow, who has built excellent relations with the Mongolian Government during a decade of work there.
He first organised tourist trips to the Mongolian steppes and Gobi Desert, before falling in love with the country and embarking upon a series of charitable projects.

Mr Scott said: “There are a lot of similarities between the two countries. Both have outstanding natural beauty. Both have a large rural population as well as friendly, welcoming traditions. They make their own spirit – Gengis Khan vodka – and we make whisky.”Mr Scott has held several meetings with the Mongolian diplomats in London and hit upon the idea of bringing them north of the Border. He added: “After working closely with the embassy in London and attending meetings at Westminster, it seemed logical to arrange similar meetings in Scotland. During this visit, the aim is to set up bilateral relations between the two countries and increase trade.”The diplomats will arrive in Glasgow on March 9. They will meet the Lord Provost of Glasgow, Bob Winter, before visiting a whisky distillery and a Highland Cattle farm.
“Agriculture is a shared point of interest,” Mr Scott said. “Due to the sheer size of the country, it is full of herdsmen who keep goats, camels and cattle. The Mongolians are very keen to visit a Scottish farm.”
On March 10, the delegation will go to Edinburgh and visit the Scottish Parliament, where they will receive an official greeting from the Deputy Presiding Officer. They will attend First Minister’s Questions and spend the afternoon meeting various politicians in order to hammer out trade deals. They will also pay a visit to Stirling.
Although Mr Scott is not involved in politics directly, he is one of the best-known Scots in Mongolia because of his charity work.
He is currently overseeing the construction of a school for the deaf, which has been partly funded by Barrhead Rotary Club. Through his work with the Yama Trust, a Scotland-based charity, he has also helped to build several homes for orphans. in recognition of the growing popularity of football in the country, Mr Scott has built a team made up of both Rangers and Celtic fans called Gobi United to play Mongolia’s top side, Mazaalai FC, in September.He added: “Both sides are up for the game. Our guys look pretty handy, so I hope they will win.”
Bat-Erdene Chinuukhei said the ambassador was looking forward to his visit to Scotland.He said: “I have met a few Scots and we found them close to our heart, as they are friendly, welcoming and hospitable. We wish to develop co-operation between our two countries and encourage trade. We have the best vodka in the world and we would like pure Scottish whisky to trade in our country.“Also, we are interested in agriculture of Scotland, as animal husbandry is a large industry in our country. Scotch beef is famous and we are interested to see the places where it is farmed.”

<EK Navy officer gets set for 100-mile charity trek
Feb 23 2011 by Nicola Findlay, East Kilbride News
A ROYAL Navy officer is swapping the high seas for the desert when he joins a fellow East Kilbride dad on a charity trek.Tony McCallum, 39, will join St Leonards dad-of-two Denis Griffin, 37, on the gruelling 100 mile trek across the Gobi Desert.As previously reported in the News Denis is part of a 30-strong team made up of Celtic, Rangers and Motherwell supporters who will tackle the 10 day trek across the desert.The money raised will go to Motor Neurone Disease Scotland and The Davie Cooper entre Clydebank.
And it was after seeing an appeal in the News for extra team members that Tony, from The Murray, decided to swap life on a submarine for 10 days in the desert.He said: “I have known Denis for years but hadn’t seen him around in a while but then I saw the article in which he was appealing for more volunteers to come forward.“I got in contact with him and he told me all the information but as I am in the Royal Navy I However, last week Tony got onfirmation that he would be able to go on the major event.“I already do hill walking and have to take part in annual fitness tests as part of my job but I thought this would be more of a challenge,” Tony continued.“We will be climbing sand dunes twice the height of Ben Nevis and it is hard enough climbing Ben Nevis.”Tony, who is based in Portsmouth, has been busy organising race nights and other fundraisers prior to arriving in Mongolia on September 3.
Meanwhile, a cabaret night hosted by MC Stevie Grassie is being held on Friday, March 4 in the Parkville in Blantyre as part of the efforts.Last week Denis and Tony were delighted to accept a raffle prize of a 42 inch plasma TV from Bright House in East Kilbride for the Parkville fundraiser and there are many other fantastic prizes on offer.And an up-and-coming Scottish band YoMama have written a song, Gotta Keep On, about the team’s trip to the desert and have given them permission to sell it to raise funds for the Gobi United cause. The band are going into the studio this week to record the single and have invited Denis and Tony along to sing backing vocals in the chorus with signed copies hopefully available at the Parkville. This song will also be used as a backing track for a promotional video which Denis’s daughter Rachel will be putting together to describe the trek and the two charities involved.
There are still a couple of places available and Denis is keen to hear from any footballers as two of Gobi United’s star players, who are due to face Mazzalai FC, a premier league Mongolian team in the Mongolian National Stadium, the day the team arrive have had to pull out.Donations can be lodged and more information can be found at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/gobiunitedfc or on the charity blog https://jockmcinnes.wordpress.com

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