WHEN the wife of a retired doctor said her husband should find something to do, she had little idea of what she had unleashed.

Dr Brian Scroggie, 70, is so busy in retirement that he is hardly home.

The Scottish GP, who has made Carlisle his home for 44 years, is a theatre buff from way back.

"I've always been interested in theatre but never thought I would be able to do much more than sell raffle tickets.I certainly had - and have - no desire to tread the boards."

He developed an interest in the technical side of theatre through his support of the Green Room in Carlisle.

He is a member of the Happy Hours - a group of wandering performers (four actors and him) who do an annual tour around community centres in Cumbria and as far as Langholm over the border.

He literally has to do whatever is needed - sounds, lights or whatever else can't be done by the four people onstage.

"It is all very lighthearted comedy and we are usually well received."

He lives in Parkland village and began volunteering at the Harraby community centre which is closest to his home.

During lockdown he helped organise vaccine centres at Harraby and will volunteer for another being planned.

Of course, he is also involved with the Harraby Community Centre's up-to-date and active theatre and helped with two pantomimes.

He has recently been asked to join the board of trustees.

While a love of theatre takes up a good proportion of his time, he has other pursuits, too.

He does the recording for the Talking Newspaper in Carlisle - a service that keeps the blind up-to-date with mainly local news.

"I don't read the news - I just record it" he explained.

He is also a member of the Carlisle Castle Rotary Club.

Another love is walking - and even that can be used to help others.

News and Star: WALKER: Retire doctor Brian ScroggieWALKER: Retire doctor Brian Scroggie

He leads "Walking for Health" groups, including people with dementia.

"We walk around the old airfield near Great Orton. This became a mass burial site for animals killed during Foot and Mouth in 2000. Now it is a beautiful nature reserve. They have done a wonderful job there."

He enjoys more serious walking on his own, too - when time allows.

The doctor told to find something to do in his retirement has found more than he could have imagined.

"Now Ann, my wife, says I am never home!"