Extract – Burns Chronicle 1983



Our thanks to Jimmy Johnstone for this Report.



340.   Balerno Burns Club.   The Annual Supper was celebrated in the Kestrel Hotel,

Balerno, Saturday 22nd January 1983. Edward McCue, President, was in the Chair.

James Johnstone, Police Inspector, Lothian and Borders Police, a member of the Club,

proposed the ‘Immortal Memory.’ He dwelt on varied aspects of the Bard’s life; the

main subject was why Robert Burns was celebrated all over the world and by folks of

all walks of life; his very limited education, life on the verge of poverty and short

lifespan; Mentioning that his songs and verse are as fresh today as when he wrote

them 200 years ago. The haggis was piped in by our Club Piper, Kerr Cowan, carried

by the Landlord. It was addressed by Jim Tait, our Junior Bard. Harry Rankin, in his

ninetieth year, gave the Selkirk Grace, Jimmie Dunbar singing our opening song

‘A Man’s a Man for a’ That’. After the filling of the inner man, washed down with

John Barleycorn, the nicht ‘drave on wi’ Sangs and Clatter’ as another Club Member,

Jack McCaig, described it in ‘Tam o’ Shanter’. Club Member Bill Ramsey, dressed

for the job, recited ‘Holy Willie’s Prayer’ and three worthies gave ‘Willie Brew’d a

Peck o’ Maut.’ Our local dominie Ian Falconer gave the Toast to the Lasses and the

History of the Club was proposed by Club Member Ford Paterson. I gave a poem I

Composed on the more amusing writing’s of the Bard. The night was interspersed

With music, song and verse. ‘Auld Lang Syne’ was sung and they a’ took aff their

several ways.

  The children of Primary 7, Deanpark School, had their own Burns Supper. The

Children carry out all the ceremony and teachers are the waitresses. Speeches, singing,

poetry and music interspersed with dancing; it is fast and furious, toasts all in orange

juice, the spirit is in the bairns. The children have their song and verse competitions

ranging from Primary 4 to 7. 1st and 2nd in sing and verse in Primary 7 go forward to

compete in the Edinburgh and District Burns Federation Competitions. They also have

a literature and an essay competition. 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes for individual competitions

are given by the Balerno and Marchbank Burns Clubs. Shields are held for a year and

inscribed with the winners’ names. Our Club Dance, ‘The Nicht wi’ the Lasses’ is ever


                                                                                                                 WM. R. SHANKS