Party night

The idea of a Burns Night supper came late to the good folk of Ascott, but not too late. The essential ingredients were identified.

First came Ian Drainer who not only agreed to make the address to the rather strange lump of meat on the silver salver but also managed to make the vital contact with a very fine Scottish piper, Keith Thomson from the Highland Glen of Banbury! Then the versatile ceilidh band was booked. So, all the plans were in place. All we needed then was a chef to cook and introduce the haggis – step forward Ceci (as ever) – and somebody to prepare the cranachan, a mouth-watering Scottish delicacy of raspberries, cream and inevitably whisky.

Come the evening, the sky was bright and clear so Keith, adorned in his Ancient Hunting Thomson tartan, stayed outside and welcomed our guests. At 7.50 precisely, and dead on cue, a large wailing sound could be heard from the entrance hall and Keith, Ceci and Ian entered the hall to the sound of clapping and general delight. Around the hall they went, showing off the haggis until eventually it was laid down and Ian made his animated and impassioned address to the haggis. Not that the haggis was listening!

A memorable evening was under way.

Simon Gidman

April – May 2020