Local people joined hands to sing Auld Lang Syne this New Year Year – at the very farm where Robert Burns wrote the famous song
The sell out Hogmanay event at Robert Burns Ellisland Farm near Dumfries is believed to be the first time the public could celebrate New Year in the home built by the bard himself.
The evening included entertainment by local trad band Boglemufty who ensured the dance floor was packed for Strip the Willow, Gay Gordons and – appropriately, given the location – the barn dance. An recent Historic Environment Scotland Funded report concluded that he built the historic barn where the celebrations took place.
The evening was made possible thanks to funding from Annandale and Nithsdale Community Benefit Association, The Holywood Trust and Museums Galleries Scotland.
The celebrations included traditional Hogmanay fare with clootie dumpling made by Crumbs bakery in St Michael Street, Dumfries.
Joan McAlpine, business manager of the Robert Burns Ellisland Trust, said: “Tickets flew out the door after we slashed prices to take account of the cost of living crisis. Folk of all ages enjoyed themselves and it was especially lovely to see families bring in the bells together here. People shared tables and made new friends – it was like being at your auntie’s hoose – in this case Auntie Jean and Uncle Rabbie!“
Ellisland was the first marital home of Jean Armour and Robert Burns in 1788, and was purpose built by Burns himself when he decided to return to farming following the success
of his poetry. It is now run by a charitable trust and all profits from the event will go to support the historic farm and museum.
Ellisland has availability at two more ticketed events at the barn in its Winter Programme. There is a family Burns brunch on Sunday 22 January and an evening in praise of Jean Armour, featuring award winning singer Robyn Stapleton, on 25 February. Tickets are available here