Former World Federation president gives main toast

Whiteadder Club Burns Supper at the Robins Nest, Chirnside
Whiteadder Club Burns Supper at the Robins Nest, Chirnside

Burns enthusiasts from far and wide gathered for the Whiteadder Burns Club’s Annual Supper at Robins Nest, Chirnside, on Monday evening.

The club’s annual general meeting was also held on Monday evening in conjunction with the supper.

The chairman for the evening was Tim Sewell, from Shilbottle in Northumberland, who welcomed members and guests from as far south as Hungerford to Edinburgh in the north.

Tim conveyed best wishes to the club’s honorary president Walter Robertson who celebrates his 90th birthday this year.

The club’s thoughts were also with Peter Craig, Bruce Thomson and Tony Langmack who were unable to attend the supper due to ill health.

The main speech of the evening, ‘The Immortal Memory of Robert Burns’, was given in his own inimitable style by Jim Shields from Edinburgh, past national president of the Robert Burns World Federation.

The ‘Toast to the Lassies’ was very ably given by Robin Dodyk of Kelso who is currently president of the Border Association of Burns Clubs and secretary of Kelso Burns Club.

Grant Lees of Galashiels, professional clock repairer, proposed the toast to the club, praising secretary John Gardiner of Berwick and the club’s committee for all their hard work behind the scenes in making for another unique supper.

Chairman-elect Gary Smith, head coach of Eyemouth United Football Club and also a volunteer coastguard, proposed the toast to chairman Tim.

Ian Buick of Berwick once again performed his speciality ‘Tam O’Shanter’ with Stuart Robertson of Dunbar giving arguably the finest ‘Holy Willie’s Prayer’ ever witnessed at the club.

A full programme of the bard’s songs and poems was covered during the evening with excellent performances from Ken Taylor, Tom Nisbet, Dixie Scott and the Poodlies, all from Eyemouth, Rob Cockburn of Swinton, Ronnie Simpson, Frank Millar and Ian Aitchison, all from Duns, and Alistair Lindsay of Ayton.

The haggis was addressed by Peter Walker of Eyemouth and grace sung by The Poddlies.

The entertainers for the evening where accompanied by James Tarvit, the musical director.

Walter Hay of Eyemouth was on keyboard and the piper was John Thomson of Todrig, Greenlaw.