Dancers have a ‘reel’ good time

Members of Linlithgow's Scottish Country Dance Club
Members of Linlithgow's Scottish Country Dance Club
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One of Linlithgow’s best loved institutions is celebrating 35 years of frenetic activity.

For the town’s Scottish Country Dancing Club has just recommenced after the summer break and already the 60+ members are hot to trot at the first of their two annual dances.

The dances are held in October and April and are the twin highlights of the members’ season, the first of which takes place, complete with live dance band, in the Queen Margaret Hall, Blackness Road, on October 31.

That’s when the kilts and fancy frocks come out of the wardrobe and all the dances learned at the regular Friday night sessions are performed with considerable gusto.

Maureen Ramage, club secretary, said: ‘‘At the moment we have 63 enthusiastic dancers in the membership and I would expect to see a few more in coming weeks because last year we had over 70 members.’’

As well as the regular Friday sessions, a beginners’ class is held in Springfield Primary School on Wednesday evenings at 7.45pm.

The club is also heavily involved in the annual Scotch Hop sessions at Linlithgow Palace. The Hop, dreamed up by former club chairman, John Carswell, has just celebrated its 25th season.

Another highlight of the dancers’ year is their Hogmanay jig.

Added Maureen: ‘‘ Although most of our members are retired, they are very enthusiastic. Everyone looks forward to the two dances which draw dancers from outside the town.

‘‘We often use CDs as we learn new dances at the Friday sessions but we have a live band for the dances.

‘‘The weekly sessions are informal but its kilts and dresses for the dances!’’

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