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Press release



QMU launches Pro-Am Master Chef Cook Off

and St Andrew’s Ceilidh

East Lothian residents and visitors to the county are invited to take part in a Scottish culinary extravaganza set to take place at Queen Margaret University.

Following the sell out of QMU’s Homecoming Finale last November, the University is delighted to host another celebration of Scottish culture and food over St Andrew’s weekend. This year, the University is raising the game with a Pro-Am Master Chef Cook-Off competition followed by a St Andrew’s dinner, ceilidh and fireworks finale.

Tickets are already being snapped up for the event which will take place on Saturday 27 th November at the University.

This unique two-part QMU event is part of East Lothian’s The Saltire 2010 – a weekend of events taking place across the county from 26 th – 28 th November. QMU’s Cook-Off, dinner and ceilidh is generously supported by East Lothian Council and EventScotland as part of the Winter Festivals programme.

Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer, EventScotland said “We are delighted that the Saltire is part of Scotland’s Winter Festivals’ programme. The event is a sensational way to kick off the winter season and is a fantastic example of East Lothian’s contribution to making Scotland the perfect stage for events.”

Sarah Whigham, Events Manager at QMU, explained:” We love hosting events and this is a great opportunity for friends, family and colleagues to come together to enjoy what will be a unique East Lothian experience. Tickets are extremely competitively priced to encourage as many people as possible to participate.”

She continued: “The event is split into two parts and people can attend either or both sections. The Pro-Am Master Chef Cook-Off will run for two hours beginning at 4.30pm, and the dinner, ceilidh and fireworks part will begin at 7pm.

“Former BBC Masterchef winners, and East Lothian and Midlothian food champions, Gerry Goldwyre (1994) and Derek Johnstone (2008), will go head-to-head in a culinary battle using only the finest East Lothian ingredients in what promises to be an exciting cookery competition. The audience can then vote for their favourite and can also pose some questions to the chefs about those cooking dilemmas.  Tickets for this part are only £10 which includes a drink on arrival,” said Sarah.

Following the Cook-Off, the evening celebrations will see everyone don their tartan for a night of fun, food and fireworks. What we hope will now become the annual St Andrew’s day dinner and ceilidh, will begin at 7pm and conclude with a spectacular fireworks display over the University at 11.15pm. For only £25 per ticket, participants will be treated to a two course haggis buffet, half bottle of wine, ancient Scottish tribal music from Clann an Drumma, contemporary ceilidh music from Heeliegoleerie and fireworks.

Sarah Whigham concluded: “Knowing how much people enjoyed last year’s sell-out Homecoming event, places for this event are expected to go quickly, so don’t leave it too late to book your tickets!”

Tickets are available via the website:

If you’d prefer to come into QMU and pay cash for tickets, contact Sarah Whigham to arrange: email:


Tel: 0131 474 0000.


First part of event: Pro-Am Master Chef Cook Off
Time:                   4.30pm – 6.30pm
Price:                  £10 per person

Price includes:   Cook off competition and glass of wine or beer on arrival

Info on chefs: and


2 nd part of event: Annual St Andrew’s Day Dinner, Ceilidh & Fireworks
Time:                  7pm - 11.30pm
Price:               £25 per person

Price includes:    Glass of fizz on arrival, two-course buffet, half bottle of wine, ceilidh and fireworks display

Music at the evening: Listen to the traditional ‘tribal’ sounds of ancient Scotland with music from the renowned Clann an Drumma, followed by Heeliegoleerie - an award winning ceilidh band which brings a fresh approach to Scottish music. 

Bar:                 A cash bar will sell beer, wine and soft drinks only.

Fireworks:         11.15pm – all welcome to come along and watch

Dress code:            Formal wear – all tartan most welcome

Ticket prices:           Cook off early evening event: £10

      Dinner, ceilidh and fireworks - £25

        Special offer combining both parts of the event - £30.

More info:                

Emaill Sarah Whigham or tel: 0131 474 0000

For programme updates, timings and bookings visit  
or tel: 01620 827282 or email:

Saltire 2010 is part-funded by Event Scotland as part of its St Andrew’s Day programme which is in turn part of the Winter Festivals, a series of events from November 2010 to January 2011, which also marks Scotland’s other national days: Hogmanay and Burns’ Night.  More information at

For further media information please contact Lynne Russell, Press and PR Officer, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, tel: 0131 474 0000, email:





last modified 03/11/10 Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh EH21 6UU - Tel: +44 (0)131 474 0000
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