Sunday, 30 March 2008

Ducks Are Quackers About The Ship

If you are not an islander then a little explaining needs to be done! Going back to 1965 the very 1st island duck supper was held at the Iron Rails Inn on Marygate. The inn is now sadly closed, but in its heyday the island male fraternity with invited friends from neighbouring Northumberland and border Scottish villages got together for the annual duck supper.

This great island tradition has continued to the present day with the unique celebration traditionally relying upon ducks from the local wild fowlers. Having shot their own duck in the latter part of Winter, the months of February or March is earmarked in the diary for the gathering of local menfolk on the island. The evening dinner then got underway where everybody sat down for supper and was presented with their own duck personally cooked for them. Each duck served with a hearty portion of "tatties" (potatoes) and bagies (turnips) and of course washed down with the obligatory ale and wine.

Now in its' 43rd year, The Ship Inn this year was honoured by hosting this unique event. A welcome speech was given by Andrew, the landlord, followed on by the guest speaker which this year the honour went to Clive Massey. Clive (with his wife Sue) originally owned the Lindisfarne Hotel for over 30 years and is well experienced in hosting many island Duck Suppers and was able to look back at this unique island tradition, with of course, a few hilarious tales thrown in.
After Andrew's and Clive's speeches and with dinner over guests drank and reminisced into the early hours with the last revellers leaving around 4.00 am. This was quite early by some accounts! The feedback since was that an excellent time was had by all, in particular the ducks were cooked to perfection, with all and sundry looking forward to returning to The Ship Inn next year.
Photo top left shows Clive in full swing with photo left showing the "very smart brigade" appologies Robert, Jimmy, and Dick!

Monday, 3 March 2008

Murder at The Ship Inn

We were surprised also in discovering that a murder had been committed at The Ship Inn! However after carrying out a more thorough investigation of our own we were slightly relieved to find out the murder is in fact in the latest book by author Ken Scott's thriller, namely, "The Sun Will Still Shine Tomorrow".

Ken recently spent a couple of days on the island staying at The Ship Inn so as he could finalise his master script checking the minutiae detail just before the official book launch, earmarked for the 2oth March. Speaking at The Ship Inn, Ken informed us that he has been working on his latest novel for the last year and had gathered initial information from our Ship Inn website. On arrival at The Ship he found it was all that he imagined it would be. Besides the wonderful character within the building he said that the warm welcome made him feel at home.

Hailing originally from Berwick upon Tweed, Ken got into writing with his first crime thriller novel the "Jack of Hearts" published in October 2005. This was closely followed up the following year with the sequel "A Million Would Be Nice" voted by Amazon as the "best thriller of the year" . This was Ken's turning point as he decided to give up his day job as an international offshore consultant and take up full time writing carried out from his home near Alicante Spain.

Northumberland though is still very dear to Ken's heart and particularly Holy Island, from which he has many fond memories and Ken thought it would be ideal for his latest crime thriller.

When published the book will be available at The Ship Inn, so keep watching our news blog for any further details.