The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have sent a message to staff at NHS Tayside thanking them for their work and wishing them well on Burns Night and gifting them a haggis dinner.
The message, which saw Kate sport a tartan dress while William appeared in a blue suit, was played to a multi-disciplinary COVID-19 response team who work in the dedicated COVID-19 Intensive Care and High Dependency Units at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee.
The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay, as they are known by in Scotland, both read poems by Robert Burns to mark the holiday celebrating his life.
Charles, 72, read the New Year’s Eve classic Auld Lang Syne, while Camilla, 73, read ‘My Heart’s in The Highlands, which she said is one of her favourite poems.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have sent a message to staff at NHS Tayside thanking them for their work and wishing them well on Burns Night
The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay, as they are known by in Scotland, both read poems by Robert Burns to mark the holiday celebrating his life. Camillia is pictured
Charles (pictured), 72, read the New Year’s Eve classic Auld Lang Syne, while Camilla, 73, read ‘My Heart’s in The Highlands, which she said is one of her favourite poems.
Meanwhile William, 38, and Kate, 39, said they knew Burns Night was ‘special for Scots’ and said thanked NHS staff for working tirelessly.
‘Hello to everyone at NHS Tayside. We know Burns Night is a special evening for Scots around the world – a time to come together to eat, drink and to celebrate the life and work of Robert Burns,’ William said in the video message.
‘Sadly this year is a little different. And for many of you working on the frontline, tonight will be a very different occasion, as you work tirelessly through this pandemic to protect the most vulnerable in our society,’ Kate added.
‘We want to say a huge thank you for all of the work you are doing and the sacrifices you are making. As a token of our appreciation, we’ve teamed up with NHS Charities Together to provide you with a Haggis dinner,’ William continued.
Kate finished the message by saying: ‘We hope you enjoy it, and look forward to better times together soon.’ before they both said ‘Slàinte Mhath!’
Caring for patients in ICU and HDU involves a whole team approach and today medical and nursing staff, as well as a radiographer, a physiotherapist, a domestic assistant and a renal technologist were treated to a traditional Burns celebration lunch of haggis, neeps and tatties, courtesy of Tayside Health Fund and NHS Charities Together, of which The Duke and Duchess are Patron.
The message was shown to staff at NHS Tayside as they were thanked for working on Burns Night
Camilla sported a charcoal grey suit and with a cream pussy bow shirt and dazzling silver broach, while she kept her hair blonde carefully coiffed in pristine bob.
It comes Prince Charles was branded ‘atrociously hypocritical and entitled’ by a royal biographer, who said he looks older than his 94-year-old mother
Who was Robert Burns?
Robert Burns was born 25th January 1759 and died 21st July 1796 and was widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland.
He was a high-ranking member of the Freemasons and much of his popularity is due to him being seen as farmer’s son who could speak to the common man.
But he also led a varied social life which exposed him to high society.
His poetry often used small subjects to express big ideas, as a result he is often thought of as a pioneer of the Romantic movement.
He was a source of inspiration to the founders of both liberalism and socialism after his death, and has a national day named after him on the 25th January each year.
At New Year, his poem ‘Auld Lang Syne’ is still sung to this day.
For 200 years his birthday has been celebrated with suppers in his honour.
However, he’s become more controversial in recent years, as people have questioned his personal life.
The poet Liz Lochhead outed Robert Burns as a sex pest, highlighting a 1788 letter written to Bob Ainslie in which Burns implies he raped his pregnant girlfriend Jean Armour.
He bragged of giving his lover a ‘thundering scalade [a military attack breaching defences] that electrified the very marrow of her bones’, and said he ‘f****d her until she rejoiced’.
Lochhead described his letter as a ‘disgraceful sexual boast’.
‘[It] seemed very like a rape of his heavily pregnant girlfriend. It’s very, very Weinsteinian’, she said.
‘Not only did Burns make Weinsteinian claims in his correspondence, his poetry abounds with physical violence against women’, writes Daniel Cook, senior lecturer in English at the University of Dundee in The Conversation.
‘Not published until after his death, Merry Muses of Caledonia is stuffed with the bawdiest songs you’re ever likely to read’, he writes.
However, Dr Cook says these works can help us to reconsider human concerns.
‘After Weinstein, the time is right to reevaluate how we respond to literary traditions’, he writes.
‘Rather than using literature (or private correspondence) to out so-called sex pests, though, we can use it as a vehicle for understanding the long history of sex pesting.’
Two hundred food boxes from local family business House of Bruar will also be shared with hospital staff and Royal Warrant Holders Valvona & Crolla, and Fisher and Donaldson kindly donated Burns Biscuits and gift boxes to NHS Tayside staff to thank them for all they have been doing.
In her video, Camilla sported a charcoal grey suit and with a cream pussy bow shirt with a dazzling silver broach, while she kept her hair blonde carefully coiffed in pristine bob.
The royal kept a gentle make-up natural look with a layer of foundation and dark eye-make-up, while remaining jewellery-free.
Meanwhile, the heir to the throne sported a grey suit with his signature patterned tie, a powder blue shirt and a silk pocket square as he read the first to verses of the famous poem.
After finishing the poem Charles said ‘Sláinte,’ a Gaelic word meaning ‘health’ and a common toast in Scotland.
He then takes a sip from a silver cup and smiles at the camera.
The celebration, which marks the life and poetry of Scottish poet Robert Burns, usually sees the nation come together to the soundtrack of blasting bagpipes as they enjoy a meal of haggis, neeps and tatties while drinking drams of whisky.
Charles and Camilla have been staying at Clarence House in London for the majority of the pandemic. while William and Kate have been spending time at Amner Hall in Norfolk.
NHS Tayside employs 13,000 members of staff, who have been caring for patients from Angus, Dundee and Perth & Kinross in hospitals and communities throughout the pandemic.
‘Over the past three weeks, the COVID-19 dedicated wards, Intensive Care Unit and High Dependency Unit have seen unprecedented numbers of patients with COVID-19, with the number of people being cared for in hospital increasing nearly four times over.
Grant Archibald, NHS Tayside Chief Executive, said, ‘Our staff have now been at the frontline in our response to COVID-19 for more than 300 days and their dedication has been truly awe-inspiring. It means so much to all of our teams across Angus, Dundee and Perth & Kinross to receive this special message of appreciation today which underlines the ongoing, extraordinary efforts of Team Tayside.’
Lorna Birse-Stewart, Chair of Tayside NHS Board, said, ‘On behalf of NHS Tayside and Tayside Health Fund I would like to take the opportunity to thank The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge for this wonderful gesture.
‘It provides an opportunity for us to recognise some of the patient-facing and support staff across health and social care in Tayside who have demonstrated extraordinary commitment during these most challenging times.’
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