November 25 2018
The speakers at our meeting on Tuesday 13th November were OA members Kathryn Grainger and Neil Clark. Invited to the Falkland Islands to provide live music and meet up with Neil's pupils there who are learning to play bagpipes online, the trip proved to be an uplifting and moving experience, well worth the long journey from RAF Brize Norton. Kathryn and Neil shared their music in schools, ran a series of music workshops, and performed at two ceilidhs, as well as visiting some of the memorial sites for soldiers who died during the Falklands Conflict, several of them Neil’s comrades. Despite their hectic event programme, there was time for sightseeing and appreciating the wild life, including a variety of species of really cute penguins. Neil even managed to fit in one of his marathons! The slideshow included photos of magnificent white beaches and stunning blue seas, very reminiscent of our Outer Hebrides landscapes, and a poignant shot of Neil playing the pipes on Tumbledown Mountain. The Falklands War is still part of the islanders’ lives; for instance, there are still minefields to be de-mined 36 years later. We all learned a lot from this most interesting and enjoyable talk.