Robert Burns enthusiasts wanted charity to work to save Scotland’s national poet’s home

Fans of Scottish national poet Rabbie Burns are called upon to help a new charity in its quest to reopen to the public one of Scotland’s most important Burns sites.

Volunteers will have the chance to learn more about their favorite poet while supporting Ellisland Farm, Robert Burns’ family home near Dumfries.

The Robert Burns Ellisland Trust was formed in April to conserve and promote the Poet’s House at Auldgirth on the banks of the Nith.

Today, the association is looking for motivated, sympathetic and energetic people, passionate about Burns, in order to recruit new volunteers.

There are a number of volunteer opportunities available, including in front of the house (interacting with the public, leading tours); gardening, care and maintenance; curator (cataloging archives, data entry, administration) – and together they will help the crucial cultural site reopen to the public, maintain the grounds and promote Ellisland’s offering to the local, national and international community.

All volunteers will receive a full initiation into Ellisland and training in the history of the site, where Burns wrote masterpieces such as Tam o ‘Shanter and Auld Lang Syne, and in return for their work they will be able to work with international experts on Robert Burns and learn more about his life.

The project was led by Volunteer Coordinator and Project Officer Tuesday McPhail, who began her role in September.

She said: “Volunteers have long been Ellisland’s lifeblood – from the welcoming faces telling stories from the bard’s time here to the dedicated gardening and maintenance team who kept the grounds clean and tidy for a long time. summer.

“We are looking to build on what has been achieved and welcome new volunteers to help the Trust drive the development of the site and create a comprehensive offering for the public. ”

The Robert Burns Ellisland Trust says it is “committed to conserving and promoting Ellisland Farm at Auldgirth in Dumfries & Galloway as one of the most important places in the life of Robert Burns, the Scottish national poet”.

But the charity warned in June that it would shut down permanently without urgent funds to help maintain the site.

The Robert Burns Ellisland Trust, which took over from the old Ellisland Trust in April, found that all of the old charity’s reserves were spent and it had a large annual deficit.

Nonetheless, the Trust has the ambition to increase understanding of Ellisland as central to Burns’ artistic development and to raise awareness of its environmental significance as “the best place to see the natural world through the mountains. eyes of the poet ”.

Robert Burns, who took the lease on Ellisland Farm in 1788, described it as “the poet’s choice” among three farms donated by his Edinburgh acquaintance, Patrick Miller, who became its owner.

This is where Burns will find inspiration for some of his most beloved works.

The Robert Burns Ellisland Trust has now taken on the responsibility of running the house and farm as a museum, supported by volunteers.

You can donate on their JustGiving page here.


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