Final chapter for magazine
The glossy magazine EB Living, circulated in east Berwickshire for the past four years, is coming to an end.
The 18th issue of EB Living will be the final one, with current editor Richard Yeo admitting that the costs and work involved were proving just too onerous.
Paying tribute to Pat Elliott, who first came up with the idea for EB Living, Richard said: “Pat saw the magazine as a means of social cohesion as well as a vehicle for telling the tale of this land.
“Pat is a superb innovator and creator, and I speak as a subsequent editor who tried to follow in her footsteps.
“Few will understand how much work goes into the production of a really good magazine.
“Before anything else, there is the matter of finance.
“If you’re not lucky enough to have a wealthy backer, there will be the need to find advertisers. It used to cost £1,600 to produce every issue of EB Living, and there were five a year.
“That is an awful lot of advertising and, behind it, an enormous amount of phone calls, e-mails and cajoling.
“Then there is the selection of themes and commissioning of contributors.
“Simply accepting copy and printing it produces a parish magazine. Something as good as EB Living needs constant honing and polishing to produce a coherent whole, all done against the clock.
“On top of this, there are finance, invoicing, proof-reading and distribution, not to mention correspondence and chasing up reluctant payers. For me, the latter was the straw that broke the camel’s back.”
Pat did most of those tasks herself, assisted by her administrator Amanda Hogg, but after producing three issues of the magazine, Richard admits he couldn’t handle that sort of workload.
“We’ve finally had to admit that, after 18 issues, EB Living will cease to exist,” he said.
“We’ve wound it up and are distributing our remaining funds among local charities.
“What did we achieve? Well, Pat, most of all, instituted a first-class magazine which, within three years of its first issue, came runner-up in a national competition for local media.
“We publicised all manner of local charities and businesses.
“One of the joys for me was hunting out the hidden treasures of Borders life, setting out to do an interview on menopause only to find, at the end of it, a skilled bellows maker.
“Our 3,000 copies were distributed as far as Alnwick, Wooler, Melrose and Dunbar.
“Judging by the letters we received, it was read by a much wider audience of Berwickshire exiles all over the country and beyond.
“We started a fruitful link with Eyemouth High School with a view to giving an opening to budding journalists.
“I’d like to say thank-you to all our contributors. We were really blessed by the quality and consistency of their input.
“To our distributors and especially Isabel Kellie, my grateful thanks in getting the copies out there, still warm from the press.
“And to our readers, I only know a few of you, but I know from your letters and feedback the high regard you had for the magazine, an especially big thank-you – and goodbye.”
MSP Paul Wheelhouse with Pat Elliott at the launch of EB Living in 2013. Left, an edition of the now-doomed magazine.
EB Living was started four years ago.
Five issues a year were printed by a team of volunteers.
During that time, 18 issues have been produced.
It had a circulation of 3,000 and although it was initially dedicated to East Berwciskhire, hence its title, it was distributed as far as Alnwick in the south, to Dunbar in the north and west as far as Melrose.
Production costs and pressure on the team of volunteers meant they had to take the decision that issue 18 would be their last.
So now regular readers are having to say a sad farewell to EB Living.