Weel duin tae Fiona Davidson wha hae bin nominatit in Scots Speaker o the Year in the Scots Language Awards. Vote now!
The Scots Language Awards are in the Johstone Toon Ha, Johnstone on 16th September at 7pm. Tickets fir the ceremony are available tae buy here: https://handsup.link/SLA-BuyTickets.
We askit Fiona Davidson o Fiona Davidson thae speirins.
Tell us aboot yersel or yer ootfit.
A come fae a village ca’d Pethheid in Midlothian. A’ve wirked in heritage fir nearly 30 year, an A’m currently a lairnin officer, creatin programmes an activities thit support fowk tae find oot aboot an be inspired bi Scotland’s historic sites. A huv a bit ae an obsession wi waterwheels an mills, gauin tae great lengths tae find an veesit them! An A luve scrievin wee poyums in Scots!
Whit wis it got ye involvit wi the Scots leid?
Weel, A’ve jist grown up speakin this wey! It’s how ma faimily speak. A luved daein the Burns Competition at schuil – still got aw ma certificates! Social Media made the real difference – it gien ees an opportunity tae find ma vyce an scrieve in ma ain tongue. Through that, A came across Scotstober in 2021 an fair enjoyed takin pairt bi scrievin a poyum ilka day. That led oan tae colleagues askin me tae scrieve a Scots poyum fir a lairnin resource. That led tae ither fowk at ma wirk askin me tae help oot wi Scots related wirk, like the new Scots lug-in guide fir Lithgae Palace, the response tae the consultation oan the Scots Leid an settin up a Scots Leid Wirkin Group!
Why dae ye feel it is important tae use Scots in everyday life?
Fir a stairt, the mair fowk thit speak it, the better chance it’ll hae ae no deein oot – its pairt ae oor heritage efter aw, an wid be the everyday leid spoken bi fowk whae lived an wirked in mony ae oor historic castles, hooses, forts, fairms an factories. It connects us wi whaur we come fae.
Ower time, A’ve foond thit yaisin ma ain tongue gies me mair confidence (mind, mibbe that’s jist a product ae gettin aulder an mair gallus!) Yaisin ma ain tongue aye soonds mair authentic. If A’m runnin workshops or activities, speakin in Scots seems tae mak a freendlier, less intimidatin atmosphere. A git the impression fowk dinnae come across Scots speakers wirkin in heritage that often. An sum fowk kin be pit off heritage if its aw posh accents an double barrelled surnames! An onythin thit helps engage fowk or maks fowk feel mair at ease speakin in thir ain tongue shairly hus tae be a guid thing.
Dae ye hae a favourite Scots phrase or saying?
Ma favourite phrase is ‘wrocht tae daith’ – yin ma mither yaises. Literally ‘worked to death’ (!) she yaises it tae mean puggled fae huvvin tae keep daein sumthin, or runnin back an forrit – like keepin pittin oot an bringin in yer washin when the rain’s off an oan!
Ma favourite wird is souster – yin ma dad wid say, especially whin we were oot gaitherin brambles. When we foond a muckle yin, he’d say “that’s a souster, that yin”!
Is there a Scots speaker who inspires you?
Jings – that’s like bein asked tae pick yer favourite bairn! So, nae pun intended bit Jamie Fairbairn is makin muckle strides in showin how Scots can be yaised in schuils an recognised within the profession. An ye’ve got tae admire @MizLiot, fir the wey she pits Scots nae sayers’ gas at a peep oan social media!
Do you hear Scots spoken regularly in your local area? Have you noticed any changes over time?
Weel, A dinnae bide in Pethheid ony mair, so no as much. Bit A hear some noo an again, maistly Scots Staunnart English.
Ony particlar career heighlichts
Bein pairt ae the partnership wi Perth High Schuil thit won Scots Project ae the Year at the Scots Leid Awards in 2022! We nivver thocht fir a meenit we’d win. A wis chuffed tae bits fir the bairns an teacher involved!
Wha’s yer plans fir the days aheid?
Girdin masel fir scrievin 31 new poyums fir Scotstober 2023 an expandin ma Scots vocabulary wi sum new wirds! An A’d luve tae build oan the success we hud wi Scots Project ae the Year. Alang wi the ither fowk in the Scots Leid Group at ma work, we’ll be pushin tae get wider awareness aboot an recognition fir Scots an tae get it yaised in mair lairnin programmes an projects – it wid dae sic a lot tae mak heritage accessible tae mair fowk.
The Scots Language Awards are in the Johnstone Toon Ha, Johnstone on 16th September at 7pm. Tickets are available to buy here: https://handsup.link/SLA-BuyTickets There wull be some grand entertainmint oan the nicht tae, includin a recital fae Renfrewshire’s poet laureate Shaun Moore,wha wis appointit as the region’s Tannahill Makar last year. talks fae weel regairdit Scots scrievers Cat Cochrane an Shane Strachan, alang wi musical performances fae celebratit multi-instumentalist brithers Euan and Lewis McLaughlin, an sangster Iona Fyfe.
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