The Whiteadder Burns Club’s 67th Annual Burns Supper at Allanton Village Hall was attended by over 60 members and guests who were entertained to a full programme of songs, toasts and recitations.
Chairman Jimmy Jamieson from Berwick conducted proceedings assisted by John Gardiner (Berwick) who was officiating for his 30th year as club secretary.
A short AGM was held first with Walter Robertson of Allanton, a sprightly 93 years old and founder member of the Whiteadder Burns Club, continuing in his role as honorary president of the club.
Chairman elect for 2018-2019 was confirmed as Bob Wortley of Coldingham.
The main toast of the evening ‘The Immortal Memory O’ Robert Burns’ was given by Benny Higgins former CEO of Tesco Bank and current chairman of Scottish National Galleries. His toast was poignant and thought provoking entwining literature with poetry.
Martin Fell, a retired English teacher from Spott in Berwickshire, followed on with a humorous Toast to the Lassies.
Tam O’Shanter was performed by Ronnie Fleming of Kelso, and Walter Blake from Stichill continued the fun with his own unique performance of Holly Willie’s Prayer. Undoubtedly two remarkable performances.
The ‘Toast to the Club’ was given by John Elliot of Coldstream, who is also secretary of Coldstream Burns Club, and Bob Wortley gave the ‘Toast to the chairman’.
Entertainment during the evening was provided by amongst others Ian Buick (Berwick), Bob Tait (Duns), Alistair Lindsay (Ayton), Bobby Hanlon (Coldstream), Jimmy Jamieson(Berwick), Murray Henderson (Duns), The Poodlies (Eyemouth), Tim Sewell (Shilbottle Nr.Alnwick) and Tom Nisbet (Eyemouth).
The musical director for the evening was John Purvis of Eyemouth ably assisted by accompanist Walter Hay (Eyemouth) and Pipe Major Andrew Ainslie (Gavinton) was piper for the evening.
The Whitadder Burns Club was established in 1952 and for many years it met in the Red Lion at Allanton, its first chairman being John Guthrie, a carpenter from the village. Changes to the venue in 2000 meant the supper moved to the Naismiths Hotel in Chirnside for five years, before moving to Chirnside Community Centre, Foulden Village Hall, Eyemouth Golf Club and now Allanton Village Hall.
A long time committee member of Whiteadder Burns Club, Tony Langmack, who was also a former editor of the Berwick Advertiser, sadly died on Friday, February 8.