St Andrew’s Day fun goes international

Crowds thronged the streets for St Andrews' celebrations of the its eponymous saint.
Crowds thronged the streets for St Andrews' celebrations of the its eponymous saint.

Audiences around the world will be able to join in the firstever St Andrews Day Conversation next week as the event is streamed live over the internet.

Muriel Gray, Henry McLeish, Janice Galloway and David Mach will be discussing what it is to be Scottish in the first Conversation on Wednesday (November 30).

And their debate, chaired by Louise Batchelor, will be available live on YouTube – follow the debate from 7.15pm.

The event, at the Buchanan Theatre,is the highlight of a week of events in St Andrews to celebrate Scotland’s patron saint.

The celebrations reach a high-point tomorrow (Saturday) when the town’s Christmas lights are switched on by a group of ‘Andrews’ from across Europe.

The group of 22, named Andrew, André, Andreas and even Andrea will be in town to take part in a video being made by VisitScotland to promote Scotland as a tourist venue in November, as part of the national tourism organisation’s Spirit of Scotland campaign.

The big switch-on comes at the end of an afternoon of festivities which will see former Runrig front man Donnie Munro and his band headlining a massive street party.

Award-winning Celtic rockers Skerryvore will also be joining the party in Market Street, hosted by Fife radio legend John Murray.

The will also be footstomping klezmer music from Celter Schmelter and Edinburgh singer-songwriter Caroline Gilmour during the afternoon.

Fire eaters, stiltwalkers and buskers will all mingle with the crowd to keep everyone entertained through the day. And once the lights are on, St Andrews will play host to world’s largest St Andrew’s Day ceilidh.

Locals and visitors are invited to put on their dancing shoes and jig and reel along to the the Kilrymont Ceilidh Band.

And if all that partying isn’t too much, there’s the annual St Andrews Vs the Rest of the World Golf Match.

It will be played over the New and Jubilee Courses, on Sunday (November 27).

Continuing the golf theme, the Royal and Ancient Clubhouse opens its doors in a special St Andrews Day Doors Open event, on 
Wednesday (November 30).

That will be followed by the climax of food festival Savour St Andrews – a special St Andrew’s Day dinner at the Old Course Hotel, bringing together chefs from north east Fife’s top restaurants.

Geoffrey Smeddle from the Peat Inn; Frank Trepesch from the Fairmont; St Andrews Links’ Ian MacDonald; David Kinnes from Rufflets Country House Hotel; and Stewart MacAulay from the Adamson Restaurant will be supported by students and staff from Fife College and the SRUC Elmwood campus.