Dec 272011

By Bob Smith.

Anither ear it nears it’s eyn
Faar dis the time gyang tull
It seems jist like the ither day
Ma fusky gless wis full

Full ti toast the cummin ear
An listen ti the bells a-ringin
Fowk gyaan aroon the streets
Auld Lang Syne they war singin

Scots aa ower iss warld o oors
Wull seen raise a gless or twa
Ti fowk back hame in auld Scotia
Fin fae faimily they’re far awa

Hogmanay is close eence again
A time ti reflect on fit’s been
A time ti think back ower the ear
An raise a gless ti an absent freen

A time tho’ ti look forrit
Ti enjoy life an hae some fun
A time ti gie thanks ti yer Makker
Aat yer still abeen the grun

©Bob Smith “The Poetry Mannie” 2011. Image Credit © Piotr Majka |

Nov 122011

Aberdeen Sports Village, a partnership between the University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen City Council and sportscotland, has been short-listed in the category of “Newcomer of the Year” at this year’s prestigious National Fitness Awards.  With thanks to Dave Macdermid and The Big Partnership.

The Awards were launched last year to honour operators from across the UK in the health and fitness industry.  The category of Newcomer of the Year is aimed at facilities who have been operating for less than 2 years (as of March 2011), and who have made their mark within the industry in terms of facilities, services and innovation.

The Sports Village has been nominated in this very closely contested category, against new sports facilities, health clubs and gyms from across the whole of the UK.  They impressed the judges, not only with the impressive facilities on site, but also with the numerous high quality activities and services available to everyone in the community.

Jan Griffiths, Sports Development Manager at Aberdeen Sports Village, said:

“The Sports Village strives to be at the cutting edge regarding all aspects of sport, fitness and health, and we are passionate about everything we do.  The local community have really embraced the ethos of the Village, and we are privileged to be able to support and educate our customers in such a welcoming environment.”

The winners in each category at the National Fitness Awards will be announced on Friday 25 November at their Awards Dinner at the International Convention Centre in Birmingham.

Dec 262010

By Peter Coutts.

It’s that time of year when everyone is frantically trying to pin down exactly which social gathering they will attend this Hogmanay. Well, the answer to your New Year party prayers is here….

The Blue Lamp will be hosting its second Hogmanay Hootenanny, on December 31, funnily enough.

Following the success of last year’s festivities, the Lampie is once again home to this tasty event, featuring the cream of local talent firing at you traditional and not-so-traditional music from both sides of the Atlantic.

Local 6-piece bluegrassers Smokin’ Catfish have been surprising audiences in Aberdeen for over two years with their stunning harmonies and foot-stomping live performances. This traditional bluegrass line up with its inbuilt rock ‘n’ roll attitude will wear out your dancing shoes in an explosion of high-octane, string-pickin’ fun.

Catford, new to the Aberdeen scene, feature local multi-instrumentalists and singer/songwriters Steve Crawford and Davy Cattanach, augmented by the amazing Jonny Hardie, Davy’s former Old Blind Dogs bandmate. The boys have just released a new album, Chronicles, which should be on your January sales shopping list. Driven by Steve and Davy’s percussion and guitar and underpinned by Jonny’s luxuriant strings, Catford’s blend of exquisite songs, jaw-dropping harmonies and virtuoso musicianship will leave you mesmerised.

Also joining in will be local firecracker and host of SHMU FM’s Monday Session, Naomi Ballantyne, an exciting local fiddler who will bring a smile to your face, a twitch to your toes and a song to your heart. Naomi will be joined by members of Catford and Smokin’ Catfish for a rip-roaring transatlantic session.

So, this Hogmanay, give yourself a last-gasp 2010 gift and get down to the best venue in Aberdeen and hae a rare auld time in the friendly atmosphere. Slainte mhath.

HOGMANAY HOOTENANNY, The Blue Lamp 31 December 2010, featuring

Smokin’ Catfish (kickass bluegrass)

Catford (Davy Cattanach, Steve Crawford, Jonny Hardie)

with special guest Naomi Ballantyne

8.30pm (onstage 9.30) till LATE