Burns Night Report


President Dr Chris Westwood              Secretary Mr Jonathan Frappell

Friday 25 January 2019

Derriford Centre for Health & Wellbeing


Burns Dinner and ceilidh


The piper Tim Healy greeted the guests as they congregated in the bar and took their seats at three long tables.  They were welcomed on behalf of the Society by the membership secretary before standing for the Selkirk Grace. The haggis was piped in and addressed by Bob Freeman.

After the traditional main course of haggis, neeps and tatties, served by Tracey Gardner’s magnificent crew, medical student Alex Gordon recited a witty Immortal Memory in praise of Robert Burns’ creativity and the resilience of the Bard’s wife, Jean Armour. His speech was skilfully crafted by himself and Jenna Barnett, who was sadly prevented by family illness from addressing us.

The event was sold out and attended by 93 people, including the Hon Sec of the Society, 23 Medical Society members, Professor Rob Sneyd, Emeritus Dean of the Medical School, 14 students, our dance tutor Valerie Harman and three band members: Lynn, John and Mel. Between courses, Robert Jeffery recited “My love is like a red, red rose” before proposing the Toast to The Lassies and Sue Frappell responded hilariously in rhyme and toasted the Laddies.

After dessert, coffee and shortbread were served in the bar the guests danced to Dawntreader Ceilidh Band, commencing with a Circassian Circle, Gay Gordons and Dashing White Sergeant.  The guests joined in for a second Eightsome Reel in eight square sets after a demonstration by members of the student dance troupe and they had a chance to recover while the students performed the Gramachie Strathspey. It was then time for an energetic Strip the Willow, Mairi’s Wedding, a final polka and Auld Lang Syne to finish at 11.30pm.

The hall, Dawntreader Ceilidh Band and piper have been rebooked for Fri 24 January 2020.  Next year, there will be discounts for members, and groups that book early.  I would welcome a volunteer to help organise the event - ideally, one of the students staying in Plymouth for foundation training, as sadly no trainee doctors attended this year.

Robert Jeffery, Membership Secretary of Plymouth Medical Society