In Luxembourg

Bagpipes, Whisky and Tartan for St Andrew's Day celebration

Hosted at British Ambassador's residence

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By Alix Burton  

Whilst 'officially' St Andrew's Day falls on the November 30, the Scottish Community in Luxembourg celebrated in customary style at the Ambassador's residence on Friday evening.

Around 50 guests were 'piped' into the main hall by the Luxembourg Pipe Band who played a reel of 'Ceòl mór' (classical highland songs) to open the festivities.

"The sound of the bagpipes, brings a lump to any Scot's throats," said Michael, "It's a wee reminder of Scotland that makes you realise how much you miss home."

The evening provided no shortage of reminders for those Scots away from home. In addition to the pipe band, Danny Boland, currently in his last year at school, sang a range of traditional Celtic and folk songs beautifully accompaigned by his guitar. Walkers provided the obligatory Scottish shortbread and a dram or two of Whisky was readily available for those who were willing.

No St Andrews day celebration would be complete without dancing and the Luxembourg Scottish Country Dance Club gave a beautiful demonstration of the 'Cleekit' dance before encouraging guests to join in.

"It's a great opportunity for the Dance Society to gather together with Scots," Said Ian Drummond, President of the Society. "We meet every Tuesday at the Primary School,  rue Noppenay, Kirchberg and new members are always more than welcome!"

  I try to ensure that St Andrew's day is celebrated wherever I'm posted 

Alice Walpole, who will be leaving her post as Luxembourg Ambassador next year, explained that St Andrew's day has always been an important celebration for her, "I remember 25 years ago Scottish country dancing in Tanzania in 40 degree heat, it was so much fun. I try to ensure that St Andrew's day is celebrated wherever I'm posted."

Whilst Scotland's patron Saint might not be as well known as Ireland's, Alan Stewart, of the Scottish Association, explained the significance St Andrew has for Scotland and to Scottish culture both home and abroad. It was this unique culture that the guests who had gathered were so eager to celebrate.

"This is the third year that I have attended," said Christian from Le Havre, France."I love the Scottish culture, the atmosphere and the music, the ambience is always great."

And as if on cue, the Luxembourg pipe band began a rousing rendition of 'Scotland the Brave.'


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