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Welcome to New Burgesses Admitted on 14th June 2023

Garry Stevens No Comments

We are delighted to welcome the following new Burgesses of Guild admitted at Full Council on Wednesday 14th June:

Colin Black, Managing Director. Nominated by Lord Dean of Guild, Seconded by Margaret Stephen
Bob Keiller CBE, Oil and Gas Energy Executive, Retired CEO. Nominated by Lord Dean of Guild, Seconded by Charles Bain
Mathew Liam Kerr MSP and Solicitor. Nominated by David Scott, Seconded by Martin Ewan
John Otto, Founder and Chairman. Nominated by Gail Watt, Seconded by Ronnie Watt OBE.
Dr Lynne Taylor, Clinical Director. Nominated by Vijay Jandial, Seconded by Past Lord Dean, Colin Taylor
Dr Irene Watt Ethnomusicologist, Professional Musician and Teacher. Nominated by Ronnie Watt OBE, and Seconded by Gail Watt

Letter to His Majesty the King

Garry Stevens No Comments

Please see below letter sent to His Majesty from the Lord Dean of Guild on behalf of the Burgesses of Guild of the City of Aberdeen on the event of his Coronation.

Albert Thomson’s book of poems

Garry Stevens No Comments

Fellow Burgess Albert Thomson recently had privately published his first poetry book, Obsidian Tears and other poems on sale at £7.50 plus post and package.

The book consists of 66 pages of poetry with a foreword by Sheena Blackhall, Makar (Poet Laureate) for Aberdeen and North-East Scotland.

Albert began writing poetry in 1980 with lengthy periods of inactivity. That changed during lockdown and he has been quite active since then. He decided to publish the book to raise money for Ukrainian refugees who have been forced to leave their homes as a result of war. Many of their stories are harrowing and there are over 2,000 Ukrainian in Aberdeen, mainly women and children, having left their husbands and fathers back home defending their country.

Books can be obtained from Albert directly through Messenger or email at albertthomson@btinternet.com.

Important Communication from the Lord Dean

Garry Stevens No Comments

On Friday 24th February an email was sent to all Burgesses via the clerk email address titled “IMPORTANT COMMUNICATION FROM LORD DEAN OF GUILD”, and included an attachment. It appears that not all of the emails reached their recipient for various reasons. For this we apologise, we are looking in to the reasons at the moment.

If any Burgess did not receive the email, can you advise the clerk via email at:


The communication email can be sent to you again individually

Many Thanks

Garry Stevens


Welcome to New Burgesses admitted 14-12-22

Garry Stevens No Comments
John Booth, Interim Chief Executive, VSA. Nominated by Kenneth Simpson, and Seconded by Lord Dean of Guild
Fiona Clark, Local Authority Librarian (Retired). Proposed by Phillip Astley and Seconded by Christine Rew

Burgess Lunch – Aberdeen Football Club

Garry Stevens No Comments

Despite the wintery conditions, over 60 Burgesses attended an excellent lunch at Pittodrie Stadium, hosted by Aberdeen Football Club in the Richard Donald Stand. Chairman Dave Cormack and some of his team gave an excellent presentation on all that is happening in and around the club, including Community Engagement, Financing of team and Club Operations moving forward and Strategies for growth, along with new stadium development plans.

The hospitality afforded to us on the day was excellent and Mike Wilson gave a vote of thanks to Dave Cormack, his Team and the Club for allowing us to be guests at our lunch at Pittodrie.

This concludes our lunches for 2022, posting for January and February lunches is already on the website, and we look forward to welcoming as many Burgesses as possible to next years programme.

As Clerk may I wish all Burgesses and their families a very Merry Xmas, and a happy, healthy 2023!

Lord Dean gets prepared for the lunch presentation
Lord Dean with Chairman of AFC Dave Cormack
Lord Dean with Assessors, Clerk and Chairman Dave Cormack

Congratulations to our Centenarian

Garry Stevens No Comments

We are delighted to pass on congratulations to Burgess Alex Mair on the occasion of reaching his 100th birthday on 5th November.

Alex, Retired MD at Grampian TV, was admitted as a Burgess in 1986. Even at 100 years of age Alex continues to inspire those around him, and his contribution to the City and Chamber of Commerce in particular has been significant.

We wish Alex a very happy birthday and trust he has enjoyed the celebrations to commemorate such a significant event.

Recent photo of Alex at RNUC

Booking process for Lunches and Events

Garry Stevens No Comments

The Lord Dean has asked me to clarify the process for booking lunches and events moving forward.

I will post details of the lunch or event to the website with a request that anyone wishing to attend must confirm via the clerk email address. Please do not use the comments tab on the posting page as this is not monitored daily, unlike the Clerk email address.

Please do not make payment without confirming your request to attend via email first, as this cannot guarantee your place at the lunch or event.

Once received in the Clerk email inbox, I will confirm by return email that your place (s) has been agreed and you can then make payment via BACS or Cheque. If you do not receive a reply within 2 or 3 days, please send a reminder and I will respond.

Trust this clarifies

Garry Stevens

Clerk to the Burgesses

Burgess of Guild Lunch – Wednesday 2 November 2022

Garry Stevens No Comments

Over 45 Burgess and guests attended yet another excellent lunch at the RNUC. The presentation from John Otto, and Kimberlie Hamilton gave the background and history to John James Rickard Macleod, from Aberdeen who most Aberdonians are unaware shared the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1923 as “co-discoverer” of insulin, which is recognised as one of the greatest medical achievements of the last century. It was clear from the presentation that Macleod was more than just a co-discoverer of insulin but played the leading role in leading, supporting research and ultimately the delivery of insulin, which has led to millions of lives being saved worldwide from type 1 diabetes since it went into production.

As Chair of the JJR Macleod Memorial Statue Society, and a diabetic himself, John Otto is keen that the life of Macleod is commemorated in the city of Aberdeen with a statue to be erected in Duthie Park next year.

The attached pdf brochure gives full details of the project, sponsorship and donation details. As a group, if any Burgess felt that they would wish to make a donation to the project, we can open a list and we could send accumulated donations as one from the Burgesses or perhaps purchase a paver as described in the brochure which could be a commemorative donation from Burgesses. Everyone is, of course free to choose how they might wish any donation to be treated.

Any Burgess wishing to donate should contact Clerk Garry Stevens, detailing name and donation amount to:


Lord Dean Presents John Otto and Kimberlie Hamilton with a gift following their presentation

Burgess Lunch – Roger Hunt

Garry Stevens No Comments

A large number of Burgesses attended a unique talk on 19th October from our guest speaker, Roger Hunt.

Roger shared his story of how he became caught up in the Mumbai massacres in 2008 and witnessed the killing of innocent people who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Roger talked in detail about his strategies to cope with what turned out to be over 40 hours, when he was a hostage in a burning hotel while a group of suicidal terrorists – who had already murdered hotel workers and guests in cold blood – remained barricaded in with hostages on the floors directly above him.

From these traumatic experiences, Roger shared his views on Human Resilience, endorsing the fact that, we are not born with resilience, but that we acquire it throughout our lives. Roger spoke of resilience being the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or significant sources of stress and that every one of us has it within our gift to develop and nurture resilience.

Now Chief of Business Services at Aberdeen airport, Roger shares his experiences widely to a local, national and global audience. A full account of Roger’s experience can be found in his book entitled ‘Be Silent or Be Killed’.

A vote of thanks at the conclusion of the lunch was given by Senior Assessor Mr Joe Mackie OBE.

Lord Dean presenting Roger Hunt with a gift as a thank you for being guest speaker

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