In June sometime I got an email from RBS promoting a prize draw to win Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo tickets. Being a sucker for competitions, I duly entered (by filling in a short form) and then promptly forgot about it. Just as we were about to head off on our holidays in July, I received an email to tell me that I had been successful!
The prize was lots more than two tickets – it was a full hospitality package prior to the show, including drinks reception and two course meal in the Queen Anne room of Edinburgh Castle, and lots of RBS freebies!
Meeting at the entrance to the castle, we were escorted through the castle grounds. I had not been to Edinburgh Castle before, and unfortunately there wasn’t much time to get some good photos before dinner.
We wound our way up the castle and were handed a choice of alcoholic fizz or non-alcoholic fizz, as well as a choice of delicious canapés (goats cheese, salmon, pate on bruschetta rounds as well as spheres of oats and haggis). It was a little crowded in the bar area but we weren’t there for too long – everything ran to a tight schedule in order for dinner to run promptly before the show. Once we found our tables in the Queen Anne Room for dinner, we met other competition winners. It was a great atmosphere as everyone was so pleased to be there and I chatted to a lovely couple of ladies called Lesley and Rachel who like me, were very excited to have won and we were egging each other on to take photos! On each table (which was named after a feature of Scottish scenery) was someone from RBS on hand to answer any questions. Gillian on our table was lovely, and as a relative newcomer to RBS appeared to be as excited as we were to attend– a definite perk of working for RBS!
After a brief introduction from the RBS Sponsorship Manager who congratulated us as winners, it was time for dinner! We enjoyed a delicious main course of venison, followed by a chocolate mousse, with coffee and truffles afterwards. Our freebies were a blanket, poncho (fortunately this wasn’t needed for the show as it stayed dry!) some shortbread and a programme for the show.
By this time it was approaching the time to head back down the hill to find our seats, but there was just enough time to have an introduction of the Tattoo by its creative director – Brigadier David Allfrey and a performance by a piper. To say he gave us a pep talk about the brilliance of the Tattoo was an understatement – he was so passionate and really built up the expectations that we were going to see a fabulous show. Was he right? You’ll have to read tomorrow’s blog post to find out!