John Rae’s 204th birthday is on the 30th September. The John Rae Society commemorates this event every year, but, this year, we want to extend the celebrations over a whole weekend, with events centred on the Hall of Clestrain. Below is a draft programme:
Friday 29th September – Dr Claire Warrior, Senior Exhibitions Curator from the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, will give an evening lecture at Stromness Town Hall on the exhibition Death in the Ice: The Shocking Story of Franklin’s Final Expedition. There will be refreshments and opportunities to buy raffle and lottery tickets. We are grateful to The Cuminga Charitable Trust for their support of this event.
Saturday 30th September – We will have our traditional graveside commemorations at St Magnus Cathedral around midday, but we will also be treated to a performance of the John Rae Reel by dancers from the Maureen Findlay School of Dance. On Saturday afternoon, we will be at the Hall of Clestrain for an open afternoon, with refreshments, raffle and lottery tickets and tours of the Hall. On Saturday evening there will be showing of the film Passage at Orkney Theatre at Kirkwall Grammar School. The John Rae Birthday Lottery will be drawn during this event.
Sunday 1st October – Open afternoon at the Hall of Clestrain.