South Scotland

Big Burns Supper festival announces venue changes

Easterbrook Hall
Image caption The Easterbrook Hall will be used by the festival for the first time

The Big Burns Supper festival has announced the end of one Dumfries town centre venue while unveiling a new site on the Crichton estate.

Organisers said they had "outgrown" the Spiegeltent, which has been located next to Loreburn Hall in recent years.

For the first time, they will be staging events at the Easterbrook Hall for the 2017 edition in January.

A free shuttle bus to the site will run at peak times and other venues in the town centre will still be used.

A Burns Night Carnival will return to the High Street on 22 January which will see a community cast of thousands present a reworking of Tam O'Shanter.

Town centre venues including the Theatre Royal and the new Stove building will be used for the first time, with traditional sites like the Globe and the Coach and Horses continuing to be used.

'Blown away'

Graham Main, executive producer for Electric Theatre Workshop, which produces Big Burns Supper, said: "When we first brought the Spiegeltent to Dumfries - there was almost a venue shortage.

"We were quite blown away by how popular some of our events became.

"The fact of the matter is we have outgrown the Spiegeltent capacity in just four of those five years.

"If we are going to grow - we need to think about it now."

The award-winning Le Haggis show is one of the events to move to the Easterbrook Hall.

Elaine Carruthers, marketing manager for the Crichton Trust, said: "This is a really exciting development and helps to position the festival across all of the assets Dumfries has.

"The estate contributes to the overall charm of the town, and it is great to see it playing a part in one of the region's leading cultural events."

The full programme for the Big Burns Supper will be announced on St Andrew's Day but other announcements are expected during November.

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