Care homes in search for Bagpipe players for Burns night

RESIDENTS in Bupa care homes across Essex are appealing for local bagpipe players to step forward and help them by piping in the haggis at their celebrations of Robbie Burns birthday. Recognising that pipers will be in short supply on Burns Night itself

RESIDENTS in Bupa care homes across Essex are appealing for local bagpipe players to step forward and help them by piping in the haggis at their celebrations of Robbie Burns' birthday.

Recognising that pipers will be in short supply on Burns Night itself (January 25), many of the care homes will be holding their Burns celebrations during the day and throughout that week, marking the life and works of the Bard with songs, poetry recitals and the traditional Scottish meal of Haggis, neeps and tatties.

Bupa's community affairs manager, Siobhan Drane, said: "It will be one of the more unusual requests in Essex but no Burns Night supper would be complete without piping in the haggis. We've had some valiant attempts from residents in the past, although I think even they admit it's not always been as tuneful as they'd like, so this year we are appealing for help."

Siobhan added: "We thought we would get our appeal in early as we know that pipers will be hard to come by in January, so whether you're a beginner or have the full Highland regalia, we'd love to hear if you can help us celebrate in style."


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Many of the homes are planning a traditional celebration featuring the Selkirk Grace and a recital of Burns' Address to a Haggis, with Burn's famous song of friendship - Auld Lang Syne - rounding off events.

Anyone interested in volunteering their services as a piper is invited to call 0845 600 4622. Times and dates of the local events will vary across the region.

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