Resources and information on Robert Burns and on Irvine, grouped under the five menus below


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Irvine Burns Club - our commitment to education - from our Education Convener

For many years Irvine Burns Club has been committed to promoting awareness, interest and a love of the works of Robert Burns among school pupils in the Irvine area. In particular we emphasise the time the poet spent in Irvine - based on the premise that while Alloway made the Man, Irvine made the Poet. To this end we have encouraged and welcomed contact with the schools in the Irvine area whenever possible.

This has now been formalised in three main ways -

* Our Primary Schools organised visits to Wellwood
* Our annual Primary Schools Verse-speaking Competition
* Selecting pupils to take an active part in our Annual Celebration


Schools Programme 2020

Once again we enjoyed a successful schools programme with some 600 Primary 6 pupils from sixteen local schools visiting Wellwood at the beginning of the year. This means that over 6000 children have now taken part in these visits. We also had 101 Primary pupils from seven Primary schools taking part in our annual verse-speaking competition from 18th to 20th February with four of the prize winners scheduled to take part in the 2021 Annual Celebration. For the 2020 Annual Celebration we had excellent performances from four of the winners of the 2019 verse-speaking competition with Melissa Anderson (S1, Greenwood Academy) delivering a most impressive Address to a Haggis. Joseph Marshall, Kamryn Cairns and Brooke Preston also delivered recitations.

Our schools programme relies on the support of the Directors and Officers of our club along with those of Irvine Lasses Burns Club which we gratefully acknowledge.


Primary School Visits to 'Wellwood'

Over the last ten years we have welcomed over 6000 pupils to visit the museum over each January and February. In 2019 this equated to 600 Primary Six children from sixteen schools taking part in our historical and audio-visual presentations, examining our artifacts and learning about Burns, Irvine and Irvine Burns Club. This programme is supported by our Directors with assistance from Irvine Lasses Burns Club and has been well received. It is also subject to regular reviews and updates to keep the visits fresh.


Our annual Primary Schools Verse-speaking Competition

This competition is open to all age groups in the Irvine area schools and this year eight out of eleven schools took part. Entrants come from the successful pupils in each school’s internal Burns poetry competition and the take-up has been around 110 pupils each year. Following consultation with the schools, this has seen us expand the timescale from two to three days in late February. Once again the programme is supported by our Directors with help from Irvine Lasses Burns Club and the timing allows articulation if desired with the Ayrshire Association and World Federation competitions. In 2019 a total of 109 pupils took part with awards going to First and Second winners at each year stage and every participant receiving a certificate.


Selecting pupils to take an active part in our Annual Celebration

For the last six years we have chosen four pupils from our competition winners to perform at our Annual Celebration each January. This has proved to be a very popular part of the programme and has generated voluntary revenue from the audience which supports the costs of the education programme.


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