Aberdeen Branch History
The Branch was founded in 1925, just 2 years after the Royal Society of Scottish Country Dancing was founded by Miss Jean Milligan. Since then, the Branch has been running classes and dances for Children and Adults, and still does so today.
In 2000 we celebrated our 75th Anniversary by holding a Dance weekend with a Dance on both Friday and Saturday evenings and a Tea Party on Sunday afternoon. Children danced for us, we had a cake baked and we designed our own logo. We also made a Book called The Aberdeen Book with 14 dances with local associations. Some had already been published (eg. Durisdeer) and others were newly in print. The book has words and music. We also produced a CD to complement the Book and Frank Thomson and his band will keep your toes tapping for over an hour. All the dances featured in the book are on the CD and 2 further dances were added - also with a local flavour.
In 2005 we celebrated our 80th Anniversary with a dance for children and adults at Elphinstone Hall. At this dance we were delighted to present our first two Branch Awards to Lesley Martin and Jean Martin. A representative of the Lord Provost was present, Stuart Adam (the then current Chairman of the Society) gave the presentations and we had a cake to celebrate! Since that time we have been working on a children's book of dances that is now available (October 2007) and has eight dances with music devised and written by members of the Branch. The book is called 8 for 80. If you would like a copy, please contact Lynn Wood (01224 636128 firstname.lastname@example.org). Price is £3.00 (+50p post and packaging). A CD of the music is available for £5.00 and is now available. If you are interested, please contact Lynn Wood for further details.
The Minutes of Meetings and Newsletters from 1925 to 1995 were recently archived with the Archivist at Aberdeen City Council - this was to ensure that records of our Society would never die. They are planned to be made available through their own website and when they are, there will be a link from this site to them.
In more recent years, Chairman Jean Martin took us through our Anniversary years and devised the idea of the Book and CD. She then went on to become Vice Chairman of the Society - in November 2002, she was voted as Chairman of the whole RSCDS at the full AGM which was held in Aberdeen - an auspicious moment!
Jim Stott was the chairman from 2001 - 2003 and his achievements for Children's Events are being continued with a Day School and Dance each year.
In 2003, Alistair Reid took over, ably supported by his Vice Chairman Bob Drummond and his other committee members.
In 2005, Bob Drummond became the chairman ably supported by his Vice Chairman Sheila Fyfe and his other committee members.
In 2007, Sheila Fyfe took up the post as Chairperson with David Eastwood supporting her as Vice Chairman. Lynn Wood continued as Secretary and Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer. Sadly David Eastwood had to resign in the summer of 2007 through ill-health. Fiona Spence became acting Vice Chairman. At the Branch AGM in March 2008, Paul McKnight was voted on as the Vice-Chairman. Under Sheila's chairmanship the Disclosure Scotland was finally organised and Sheila is now an official "signature" for anyone who needs to have a Disclosure Scotland for working with children.
In 2009 Paul McKnight became Chairman which coincided with his chairmanship of the Society's Spring Fling weekend for young people which was held in Aberdeen this year. An auspicious start! Fiona Spence stepped into his shoes as Vice Chairman and Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer and Lynn Wood as secretary.
From March 2011 Fiona Spence took over as Chairman and Isobel McMillan became the Vice-Chairman. Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer and Lynn Wood as secretary. One of the challenges facing Fiona is the new Disclosure Scotland rules for all those who deal with children. At the AGM the Motion to move our year end from December 31st to March 31st and a date in June was set for the AGM in 2012. During Fiona's tenure as Chairman, a Strategic Plan was put together by the Committee under her auspices - and a number of Policies and Procedures were updated and consolidated.
At the 2012 AGM Isobel McMillan became Chairman. Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer and Lynn Wood as secretary.
At the 2013 AGM Kathleen Bruce became the Vice Chairman.
At the 2014 AGM Stan Grycuk became the Chairman, with Kathleen Bruce continuing as Vice Chairman. Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer and Lynn Wood as secretary.
In 2015 the Branch was 90 years old and a number of celebrations took place including a Dinner Dance, Afternoon Tea Party and a Children's Dance. Special invitations were sent to our Life Members and to long term ex-members for the Afternoon Tea Party and we were delighted when we had over 120 people attending at Treetops. We entertained our guests with dancing from the children's classes and the demonstration team danced a medley of dances from our book "9 for 90". We also launched a new book (with devisors from the Branch) and a CD featuring our own Frank Thomson as musician.
At the 2016 AGM Emma Allsop became the Chairman with Morag Barclay as the Vice-Chairman. Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer and Lynn Wood as secretary.
At the full RSCDS AGM, Jean Martin became President of the whole of the RSCDS.
Early in 2017, Emma had to resign as she was moving to London, so Morag Barclay stepped in as Chairman. At the 2017 AGM Morag was voted in as Chairman with Brian Anderson as Vice-Chairman.
At the AGM in 2018, Morag chose not to continue as Chairman having served 1.5years and Brian resigned as Vice-Chairman. Clare Grycuk became Chairman with Lynne Cursiter as Vice-Chairman. Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer and Lynn Wood as secretary.
In 2020 with the Covid-19 pandemic, the AGM was held on Zoom with the current Chairman (Clare Grycuk) running this as a proxy. The committee attended. Lynne Cursiter became Chairman with Sheila Bain as the Vice-Chair. Fiona Taylor continued as Treasurer and Lynn Wood as secretary.
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