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  • Writer's pictureAyrshire Daily News

South Ayrshire launches Scotland's Winter Festival programme in Ayr

Burns On the Beach is organised by South Ayrshire Council, and has received support through Scotland's Winter Festivals. This event will launch Scotland's Year of Coast and Waters in South Ayrshire.

An exciting new programme of events are being planned in Ayr for January 2020 to celebrate Burns Night as part of Scotland's Winter Festivals.

Wednesday 22 January - Winner of Robert Burns Humanitarian Award announced

With a record number of entries for 2020, this award is presented annually around the time of Robert Burns' birthday to a group or individual who have saved, improved or enriched the lives of others or society as a whole, through self-sacrifice, selfless service, hands-on charitable or volunteer work, or other acts.

Friday 24 January - Burns on the Beach 

Burns on the Beach will headline the Burns Hame Toun programme on Friday 24 January from 7.00pm - 10.00pm. 

Burns On the Beach will take place at the pier end of Ayr beach. Five unique sound and light installations will light up our coastal assets including Ayr Pier, The Watchful Boat, Ayr beach and the promenade path. In addition, there will be a beach bonfire to create that cosy, winter beach vibe. The evening will conclude with a special burning Burns finale to the sound of authentic Scottish tribal band Clanadonia, at 9.30pm.

This family friendly event is free to attend. As an optional extra, you can purchase a 'cosy ticket', which will allow you access to the nearby Horizon Hotel. You can pop in and shelter a while, view some of the light installations from above, and pick up a hot stovies snack. The Borland Ceilidh will be playing some well-known Burns tunes, as well as talking you through some ceilidh dances.  

Tickets are priced £8.50 for an adult or child, or a group of four can purchase a family ticket for £30. Tickets are now on sale from or 01292 288235. Further information on the event is available via

Marie Christie, Head of Development at VisitScotland said, "We are delighted to support Burns on the Beach as part of Scotland's Winter Festivals. Scotland provides the perfect stage for showcasing our national bard and this special event will shine a light on the beauty of the Ayr coast as we celebrate the Year of Coasts and Waters 2020."

FREE Parking, including coach parking, is available at the nearby Cromwell Road car park. Overflow parking is available along parts of the esplanade or at the far end of the beach at Blackburn car park.

Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 January - Spirit of the Bard Burns Gala Day, Beer Hall and Burns Brunch

Burns Gala Day is being held on Saturday 25 January from 10.00am -4.00pm at the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum. This is a free family event that celebrates Burns Day with a series of carnival games with a fun Scottish twist. The Gala Day is suitable for all ages and includes fun challenges and live traditional music.

From 7.00pm you can enjoy a ceilidh at the 'Burns Beer Hall', with haggis, neeps, tatties and dancing! Tickets are £12.50 for adults and £8.50 for children. The following morning from 10.30am, you can enjoy a Burns brunch with live performances and traditional food.

Tickets are available from

Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 January - Watchful Burns

If you prefer a quieter event experience than Burns on the Beach, a selection of the installations will be available to view on Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 January from 7.00pm -10.00pm, under the banner of Watchful Burns.

Sunday 26 January - Burns Hame Toun Folk Festival 

The first Burns Hame Toun Folk Festival takes place on Sunday 26 January from 1.00pm - 11.00pm. Head into Ayr Town Centre and enjoy some fantastic musical and folk entertainment from our venues.  


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