One of Perth's most popular winter social occasions, the Annual Dinner of the Perth Burns Club, was held in the Salutation Hotel, Perth on Saturday, January 25, 2014. Once again the event lived up to its reputation of being one of the country's leading mixed Burns Nights and the capacity attendance of almost 170 members and guests enjoyed a memorable evening which featured speakers and performers of local, national and international acclaim.
Members of the top table group. Back row [l to r] Chris Smith, Donald Paton, Andrew Clegg, Bob Band, Lawrence Read, Piper Robert Hamilton. Front row [l to r] Lesley Riddoch, Fiona Hyslop MSP, President Iain Mackintosh, Fiona Mackintosh, Wilma Paton.
"Clap in his walie nieve a blade". President Iain Mackintosh addressing the haggis.
The principal speaker, Fiona Hyslop MSP, proposing the Immortal Memory.
For the first time in the club's long history, the principal speaker was a lady and Fiona Hyslop MSP, the Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, gave an inspired Immortal Memory which dwelt on how the international appeal of Robert Burns has been an inspiration in the joining of nations and has placed Scots among the true literary languages of Europe.
A lively reply to the toast to The Lasses was given by Lesley Riddoch.
Club member Andrew Clegg proposed the toast to The Lasses.
A light-hearted toast to The Lasses was proposed by Andrew Clegg who paid tribute to the three ladies whom he considered were Burns's greatest allies - his mother Agnes Broun, his wife Jean Armour and the family friend Betty Davidson who fascinated Burns as a child with her tales of witches and warlocks. A witty and thoughtful reply to this toast was given by the well-known broadcaster, writer and journalist, Lesley Riddoch.
The entertainment was again of the accustomed high standard. Renowned Scottish fiddler Patsy Reid, who at 17 was a finalist in the orginal BBC Young Traditional Musician of the Year Award, enthralled the gathering with her delightful playing of both Burns and traditional Scottish music. A mix of familiar and some of the less familiar Burns songs were beautifully sung by Craig Dennis, Liam Bonthrone and Wilma Paton to the accompaniment of Andrew Forbes. The piper was Robert Hamilton.
"The Deil's Awa wi the Exciseman"; Liam Bonthrone, tenor.
"She dirl'd them aff fu' clearly, O"; fiddle virtuoso Patsy Reid.
"Scots Wha Hae"; Craig Dennis, baritone.
"John Anderson, my Jo"; Wilma Paton, soprano.
"The piper loud and louder blew"; Robert Hamilton, piper.
Ian Macey, a pupil at Strathallan School, gave a delightful extract from "The Twa Dogs" and the tale of "Tam o' Shanter" was vividly performed by club secretary Donald Paton who also read the greetings from Kindred Clubs and Caledonian Societies.
"Twa dogs that were na thrang at hame"; Ian Macey.
"Now, wha this tale o' truth shall read"; Donald Paton.
"The melodie that's sweetly played in tune"; Andrew Forbes, accompanist.
Lawrence Read gives thanks for a superb evening's entertainment.
"We hae meat and we can eat"; Rev Geoffrey Hall.
The evening was under the chairmanship of club president Iain Mackintosh who gave a spirited address to the haggis and proposed the Loyal Toast. The Selkirk Grace was said by the Rev Geoffrey Hall.
A comprehensive vote of thanks was proposed by the club's vice-president Lawrence Read and the evening ended with the traditional singing of "Auld Lang Syne".
All photographs courtesy of
Elliott Boyle, Perth Burns Club.
Email Elliott if you'd like a copy of a photograph.