You would think as a final year criminology student, Fraser Anderson would have spotted clues he was going to be invited to be this year’s Melrosian.
But the 21-year-old, from Dingleton, who was named as Melrosian for 2014 at the Ex-Melrosians’ Burns Supper at The Greenyards on Saturday night, admits it came “out of the blue”.
Introduced to a sell-out audience by chairman and Ex-Melrosian Max Robbie, Fraser, who is in his last year at Stirling University, told The Southern of his delight.
“It came as a complete surprise, right out of the blue. I couldn’t believe it when I was asked. It is a wonderful opportunity and a once-in-a-lifetime experience.”
The son of Ian and Vada, Fraser has a younger sister, Katie, who was Festival Queen in 2006.
He has now embarked on an intensive course of riding lessons to prepare himself for this year’s Melrose Festival, as well as representing his home town at other Borders common ridings and festivals.
A keen footballer and athlete, Fraser, however, plans putting off any major celebrations until Melrose rugby sevens. I’ve a 10,000-word dissertation to be handed in by the Friday before the sevens, and that’s the last thing I have to do before, hopefully, graduating.
“So the sevens will be the ideal opportunity to celebrate both the end of my studies and being chosen as Melrosian for 2014.”
At the Ex-Melrosians’ Burns Supper, the following recitations and toasts were given: Burns poetry – John Wilkinson; haggis – Michael Crawford; Immortal Memory – Ian (Tally) Murray John; The Lasses - Sam Thomson; Reply – Pat Thom; Melrose Town and Trade – Graeme Dodds; reply – Alistair Kidd; Vote of Thanks – Graeme Crawford; Entertainers – Drew Scott, Richard and Laurie Mill.