A weekend in the middle of May was a very memorable occasion for the Oban & Lorne Strathspey & Reel Society. Having visited the island on two previous occasions the Fiddlers’ were looking forward to a weekend of music and visits to places of interest and they were not disappointed. Our complement was 32 in total, a record turnout for our annual trip.
Taking the ferry from Oban the fun started with a ceilidh on the Calmac ferry to the delight of fellow travellers, most of whom were visitors. On arrival at Scalasaig we were transported to our accommodation at Colonsay House and Backpackers. Everyone was delighted with the quality of both properties.
The main reason for our visit was to stage a concert and dance in the Hall on the Saturday night. Firstly though, with our own transport and that kindly lent to us by Sarah and David Hobhouse, we managed to get everyone including the less ambulant up to Balanard Bay where a picnic was enjoyed by all. Following our return and after a short practice we were treated to a delightful buffet, supplied by the local ladies (and the odd gent).
The evening got off to a great start with the Concert of traditional Scots fiddle music. Our soloist was Maurice Duncan, the Honorary Leader of the orchestra, who gave an outstanding performance of virtuoso fiddle playing. Following the concert a dance continued until later in the evening. The group then repaired to Backpackers for a ceilidh which went on into the wee small hours.
On the Sunday the group was transported to Oronsay with the help of RSPB and a second picnic was enjoyed.
Whilst waiting for the ferry we were treated to a sumptious meal prepared by Gavin and his ladies. Gavin also provided the excellent picnic lunches on our two outings.
Returning to Oban, passengers were again treated to an on-board ceilidh.
This was a most memorable weekend and thanks go to all the locals who made our visit so perfect. The weather even held out for us! Special thanks goes to Calmac who provided free transport for our minibus without which our elderly members could not have had the access to the Colonsay beauty spots. Thanks also goes to John MacLachlan Ltd. and The West Highland Housing Association who kindly sponsored us.
Everyone agreed – we’ll be back!
Note from Editor: We take the chance to add very special thanks from all of us here in Colonsay, for a great concert and dance; Donald Harrison is a long-standing friend of the island and we are most grateful to him for organising this splendid event, and of course we echo his thanks to CalMac and all the sponsors.