Joanne Lumley welcomed to Fife as VIP guest at Festival Of Ideas

National treaure Joanna Lumley brought some showbiz stardust to the 2022 Festival of Ideas which took place in Kirkcaldy at the weekend.

Tuesday, 14th June 2022, 11:58 am

The star of AbFab, who was made a Dame recently, was the VIP guest in a special event staged at St Bryce Kirk on Saturday night.

A huge crowd heard stories from his remarkable career which has included films, stage and screen, iconic roles such as Patsy in the hit TV sitcom and Purdey in the New Avengers - and her life as a model, campaigner and broadcaster.

The event was hosted by long-standing friend and fellow actor Arabella Weir, and introduced by Gordon Brown, former Prime Minister.

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Joanna Lumley at St Bryce Kirk (Pic: John Murray)

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Ms Lumley was also the guest of honour at special dinner hosted by the catering students of The Academy at Fife College’s St Brycedale campus.

The festival also marked the return of the hugely popular food and drink fair to the atrium.

It proved a big hit with locals with a steady stream of visitors throughout the afternoon.

Joanna Lumley on stage at St Bryce Church with Arabella Weir (Pic: John Murray)

There were also storytelling sessions at the nearby Kirkcaldy Galleries, plus live ,music from La Dolce Vita swing collective at Kirkcaldy’s Kings Live Lounge.

The festival, organised by the Adam Smith Global Foundation, is set to become a major gathering in 2023 as the town celebrates the 300th birth of Adam Smith.

Mr Brown said: “We want thank Kirkcaldy for welcoming Joanna Lumley with such applause and affection

Planet Organica at the food fair (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)

“She has just made films about Paris Rome and Berlin and now she was able to see the special qualities of Kirkcaldy, and she and Arabella Weir who interviewed her with great humou,r told us they both enjoyed the night very much.”

St Bryce Kirk Centre issued an apology after battling some issues with its sound system at the start of Ms Lumley’s show.

Rosalind Gould, centre manager, said: “We realise this was disturbing and distracting and we fully understand that some people would be affected. We too feel frustrated and disappointed.

Chef Cameron McLinden, of Graywall Hotel (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)

“Despite set up and testing, there were unforeseen problems. We will fully investigate the cause to ensure it is not repeated in the future. “She added: “We have been privileged to have had many large events and distinguished visitors in the past, without problems and we will do our utmost to ensure that is the case again.

“We greatly appreciate the opportunity to be part of such an important event, and are glad that so many thoroughly enjoyed the evening.”

Budding young chefs enjoy the pizza cookery workshop at the food fair. (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)