VILLAGERS in Bridge of Weir and Houston joined forces over a cuppa to celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight.

A coffee morning in the hall at Houston and Killellan Church saw brisk business as people of all ages dropped in for a chat and to sample some of the goodies on offer.

The event was part of a drive to secure Fairtrade status for the two villages.

Fairtrade Fortnight is a chance for supporters to highlight the campaign to ensure producers in developing countries receive a fair price for the goods they sell.

Molly McGavigan, chair of the Houston and Bridge of Weir Fairtrade Group, said the coffee morning was key to raising awareness of the Fairtrade movement and the area’s bid for official status.

The group has already forged strong links with Gryffe High, the three local primary schools, churches and community groups.

However, Molly is keen to get more businesses on board to help with the bid to secure Fairtrade status.

She said: “In areas like Bridge of Weir and Houston, the number of companies is limited but we would be delighted to hear from any who would like to support us.

“The coffee morning was a joint effort between the two villages and the Fairtrade groups based at Houston Kirk and Gryffe High School and it was very successful.”

Among those who went along to the event were local councillors Andy and Audrey Doig.

The husband-and-wife team heaped praise on organisers for supporting Fairtrade Fortnight.

Cllr Andy Doig said: “Fairtrade is all about acting local yet thinking global. What we do here can help struggling farmers abroad, so more power to their elbow.”

If you would like to back the bid by campaigners in Bridge of Weir and Houston to secure Fairtrade status, call Molly on 0771 154 0299.