Scotland’s National Bard is ‘coming home’ – and the country’s great and good are set to raise a toast in his name.
The life of Robert Burns will be celebrated at a glittering Burns Supper, staged at the sold out Ayr Racecourse this Saturday.
The Homecoming supper will be the biggest ever held in Ayrshire with up to 600 guests expected and First Minister Alex Salmond will deliver the Immortal Memory.
An array of top speakers and musical entertainment has been lined up by organisers, who are pledging to transform the Ayrshire Suite.
The night will be headed by Joe Campbell, honorary president of the Robert Burns World Federation.
One of the highlights will be a highly original rendition of the Burns classic Tam O’Shanter by Ayr born comedy actress Karen Dunbar.
The Toast to the Lasses will be given by former sprint champion George McNeill, with the reply from BBC news reader Sally Magnusson.
Musical highlights will come from celebrated Scottish singers Karen Matheson and Jamie McDougall with accompaniment throughout the evening from John Carmichael and his ex cellent band and piper, Iain Macfadyen.
Supper chair, Joe, said: “There are many thousands of Burns Suppers throughout the world each January, but I believe this glittering event may be the most special of them all situated as it is in Ayrshire, the birthplace and source of inspiration for the 400 poems and 300 songs of Robert Burns translated into dozens of different languages across the globe.”