Ahead of Burns Night on Friday (25 January), the Prime Minister and Mr May hosted the celebration in the State Dining Rooms of Number 10 in honour of the famous Scottish poet.
Guests included Chief Executive of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation Bertie Armstrong and Tunnock’s Boyd Tunnock while Dame Katherine Grainger gave the Address to a Haggis. Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell, Environment Secretary Michael Gove and the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster David Lidington also joined in the celebrations.
As they walked down Downing Street, guests were welcomed by a piper from the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards and enjoyed Scotch whisky while the Ayrshire Fiddle Orchestra played. During the iconic haggis supper, Katy Thomson performed traditional songs such as ‘Auld Lang Syne’, ‘My Heart’s in the Highlands’ and ‘Ae Fond Kiss’.
Welcoming guests, the Prime Minister said:
The work of Robert Burns, one of our finest poets, continues to be enjoyed by millions of people and tonight is not only a celebration of him but the proud culture of the whole of Scotland.
Scotland is a hugely valued part of our United Kingdom and I am delighted to have this opportunity to celebrate the great poet, this great nation and our precious Union.
Burns Night Supper has been celebrated for hundreds of years since the first supper was held by acquaintances of Robert Burns to commemorate his death. Today, it is marked all around the world to celebrate his life and work with events held in the weeks surrounding the late poet’s birthday.