Want to read more?
We value our content and access to our full site is only available with a subscription. Your subscription entitles you to 7-day-a-week access to our website, plus a full digital copy of that week’s paper to read on your pc/mac or mobile device. In addition, your subscription includes access to digital archive copies from 2006 onwards.
Just want to read one issue? No problem you can subscribe for just one week (or longer if you wish).
technical support? Click here
‘Seventy-five fish suppers please!’
That was the somewhat challenging order that Sammy’s fish and chip shop had to deal with on Saturday night (August 18).
The occasion was the annual visit of friends from Dudley in the West Midlands to Fort William. Each year they come to climb Ben Nevis and to renew the friendships sparked many years ago by Bert Bissell, an inspirational Methodist leader and peace campaigner.
The peace cairn on Ben Nevis, the memorial on the Parade marking friendship between Fort William, Dudley and Hiroshima, and peace messages on the highest peaks of each continent are all part of the enduring legacy this partnership has produced.
Each year Bert brought groups of boys to Fort William to enjoy the mountains. This year a 60-strong group came from the West Midlands. On Saturday evening the Gentlemen Songsters Male Voice Choir from Dudley, along with Fort William: Duncansburgh MacIntosh Men’s Choir and Gaelic singing from John Hutchison were at the centre of a shared evening of music and reflection.
Afterwards the singers and audience members shared fish suppers in the church hall – hence the somewhat unusual order which Sammy’s had to cope with, and which they fulfilled admirably.
A collection at the concert raised £437 for Lochaber Mountain Rescue. It is hoped that the friendship behind this event will continue strongly in future years.
All photos: Iain Ferguson, Alba/photos.
Musical director Margaret Jones and accompianist Peter Clay after the concert of the Duncansburgh Macintosh Church. NO F34 Dudley Choir 01
Fish suppers all round for choir and audience after the concert. NO F34 Dudley Choir 02
John Hutchison gave a moving solo performance of the Gaelic song he sang at Bert Bissell’s funeral. NO F34 Dudley Choir 03