The 2019 Ceilidh & Burns Supper at the Castle Green Hotel, Kendal

This annual and very popular event took place on the evening of Saturday 9th February 2019.  A total of 180 tickets had been sold and due to the ubiquitous “Man Flu,” and other health issues, the number dining was reduced to 176.  Attendances such as this are rarely seen these days and it was a privilege to be a part of it. The guests arrived from about 6.00pm onwards and as the weather was turning inclement, it was good to get inside into the warm and dry.

After the pre-dinner drinks and the usual catch up conversations, the guests took their seats and the Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master, Bro. William John Bewley, accompanied by Mrs Jenny Bewley and the Worshipful Masters of Heversham Lodge, Bro. Daniel Asplin and the Lodge of Uniformed Services, Bro. Bob Reeves, PProvGStwd.  The High Sheriff in Nomination, Mrs Marcia Reid-Fotheringham, with her husband, Dr Jim Fotheringham, were also in attendance. Worshipful Brother Richard Cowie addressed the gathering, expressing his hope that everyone would enjoy the evening and its proceedings.

Dinner was served and following the first course, the “Great Chieftain o’ the Puddin Race,” was piped into the room and duly paraded.  W. Bro. Cowie addressed the Haggis in his own inimitable manner.  We Sassenach’s had little chance of understanding what he was saying, but it was impressive, nonetheless. Afterwards, while the haggis was being attended to in the kitchen, we were treated to a medley of Scottish tunes, played by the piper, Mr Bob Wilson.  Then the main course was served, consisting of slow cooked rib eye of Pork, with haggis, Champit Tatties, Clapshot, Whisky Sauce and fresh vegetables.  Even those who are determined to turn up their noses at the thought of eating haggis could surely not fail to enjoy it.

After the main course, W. Bro. Cowie, who having already addressed and toasted the haggis, replied on its behalf in a most amusing way. The dessert course followed and then it was time to get serious.  The Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master, who had not yet completely shaken off his “Man Flu,” addressed us all.  He welcomed everyone to the event, especially those who are currently serving in the Armed Forces of the Crown.  We were then treated to a splendid display of dancing by members of The Whistler School of Highland Dancing.  Based in the North-east, these dancers are at the top of their game and we are privileged to have welcomed them again to our gathering.

Presentations of flowers were made to Mrs Jenny Bewley by Bro. Daniel Asplin, Worshipful Master of Heversham Lodge No. 8396 and to Mrs Susan Cowie, by W.Bro. Bob Reeves, PProvGStwd, Master of the Lodge of Uniformed Services, No. 9911. Nostalgic Scottish songs were played and sang by Mike Langdon and Dylith and to the strains of “Love is like a Red Red Rose,” single red roses were given to each lady present. There followed more Highland dancing, including the “Sailor’s Hornpipe,” much to the delight of V.W. Bro. Peter John Lightburn, Royal Navy (Retd).  It must have brought back many happy memories for him. 

As with all good things, the evening had to come to an end.  Yet again, it proved to be a most enjoyable occasion and has to go down as one of the highlights in the calendar of this province. Next year, the event will be staged again but will take place a week earlier.  Make a note of the date;  Saturday 1st February 2020.  I know that the organisers will strive to make it even better. The Charity monies raised by means of a Grand Draw were shared between the two sponsoring lodges, to the tune of £900.00 each. 

Finally,  thanks are due to W. Bro. Richard and Mrs Susan Cowie for leading the organisation of this wonderful event.  Also to W. Bro Brian Ferrington for his input in taking bookings, arranging the seating plan and for his role as photographer for the evening.


W/Bro Bob Erett


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