A pair of popular Angus fundraising heroes are preparing to hang up their bunnets after tickling the funny bones of Courier country audiences for years.
Buchan exiles Allan Thomson, 73, and Bob Wallace, 76, have taken their special brand of humour from Kirriemuir to the rest of Angus and beyond in sketches and poems written in broad Doric.
Donations from the Kirrie the Fit? performances and sales of their CD and Allan’s book The Moss o’ Rora have raised a total of £18,000 for the Ninewells Cancer Campaign.
Allan published the book of poetry and short stories himself. It is now out of print, having sold about 1,500 copies just by word of mouth.
The entertaining duo – who live in the same street – have even been praised on the floor of the Scottish Parliament, and while they are awaiting the release of their second CD they say they plan to wind down their appearances next year after travels throughout the land.
Allan said the partnership had grown from humble beginnings.
“Kirrie Rotary were holding a Bothy Nichts fundraiser at Memus Hall so I wrote a sketch entitled the Blin’ Lump about a farmer’s wife who had a boil on her bum,” he said.
“Bob and I performed this and the following year we were asked back and did two more sketches and it just took off from there as I wrote more sketches to add to our repertoire.
“We were then asked to perform for groups throughout Angus. Fraserburgh is the farthest we have travelled.
“After being inspired by Scotland the What, Bob and I decided to call ourselves Kirrie the Fit? but we are amateurs in comparison to them.”
The pair have never charged for their performances but are proud to have raised £18,000 for Ninewells Cancer Campaign through book sales and donations.
Their first CD, recorded in June 2017, has sold well through Kirriemuir Rotary Club’s website.
Plans to record a second CD in September were put off when, coincidentally, both of them ended up in Ninewells.
The recording has now been rescheduled for March.
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Allan said: “To date, we have given around 150 performances and in November last year, our fundraising efforts were recognised by a congratulatory motion in the Scottish Parliament.
“Whilst raising the money for Ninewells is reward enough, perhaps the best reward is at the end of performances when we are approached by audience members who say things like they have never laughed so much in all their lives.
“If I could wish for anything, it would be for a publisher to take on board the Moss o’ Rora.
“I’m not looking for a penny myself but if Ninewells Cancer Campaign could benefit then we’re all winners.”
And what of the future?
“We look forward to our second CD coming out in the spring but after that, we’ll slowly wind down,” he said.
“It has all been good fun.”