Burns club celebrate our national Bard

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Newton Stewart Burns Club held their Annual Celebration Supper last Friday in The Creebridge House Hotel.

A large gathering was assembled to honour our National Bard, with President Lex Muir giving a warm welcome to all.

The first entertainment of the evening came from young Cailey Dorans and Dougas McFadzean. Cailey, who won this year’s inter-school Burns competition delivered a faultless ‘To a Louse’, before Douglas, who was second in the competition recited ‘To A Louse’ in fantastic style. The comment was made that NASA may have discovered a new planet last week, but NSBC have discovered two new stars. John Cuthbertson presented Cailey with her winner’s trophy, whilst Douglas received the trophy for the winning school, being Penninghame Primary School, where both Cailey and Douglas are pupils.

John McNaught recited ‘The Selkirk Grace’ to allow proceedings to get underway promptly at 7.30pm, following which the Haggis was expertly piped in by Alastair Hairstens, carried by Chef James McLean and addressed with gusto by Robin Emerson.

Following an excellent meal, George Davidson sang ‘Flow Gently Sweet Afton’ unaccompanied, to great applause, following which Mike Duguid delivered a comprehensive ‘Immortal Memory’ focusing mainly on Burns Epistles and what they tell us about the great man.

George Davidson had retired from the company to allow him to prepare to deliver a ‘Holy Willie’s Prayer’ which many felt was the highlight of the evening - a fantastically amusing and expertly delivered piece.

Peter Hughes then delivered an amusing and well thought out Toast to the Lasses, which had Rhona Welch ‘gathering her brows like gathering storm, nursing her wrath, to keep it warm’. Thankfully, another song from George Davidson - ‘The Lass O’ Ballochmyle’ - gave Rhona time to reflect before she delivered a very considered and entertaining Reply on Behalf of the Lasses.

To bring the formal part of the evening to a close, Ian Petrie delivered his customary witty vote of thanks, along with a few well chosen comments to rapturous laughter. The company then joined in ‘Auld Lang Syne’ before retiring to the bar for further music from David Kerr on his accordion - a fantastic way to end a fantastic night.