North Haugh Ball: where poker tables met disco balls


Walking into the marvellous white tent used for the North Haugh Ball on Saturday night, I’ll admit that I completely forgot where I was. The venue seemed a long way away from North Haugh, where the evening was held.

Inside, the decor was an eclectic mix of eras. The whimsical look of the marquee, coupled with the addition of strobe lights and a disco ball, made for an interesting evening. The monochrome theme was brought to life by black and white tablecloths, balloons, confetti and ribbons.

While many at the ball stuck to the theme with their outfits as well, there were a few guests that dared to wear colour, and the hues seemed even brighter in comparison.

One highlight of the evening was the ceilidh, held in the first half of the evening. The high-energy dancing, along with the high-spirited live band, infused the night with a liveliness from the beginning. While the band’s energy did not last, noticeably losing enthusiasm as the night wore on, the act helped to start the night off properly. Thankfully, the loss of the enthusiasm did not infiltrate guests, with many attendees dancing until the wee hours of the morning.

Another highlight of the night was the abundance of all kinds of food; from mini pizzas and Janetta’s ice cream to salmon rolls and chicken skewers, the food delighted many a taste bud. This was probably good news for residents of Agnes Blackadder and Andrew Melville, which held pre-drinks in their respective halls with very generous bar staff. The only downside was that the cake-pops and candyfloss ran out far too quickly.

Bizarrely, the evening also included a spot of gambling, as there were poker tables placed around the venue. While no money actually exchanged hands (that we know of), the poker tables added an unexpected element to the night that definitely set it apart from other hall balls.

Overall, the night was a success. While the night lacked a cohesive theme and decent speakers (the sound system certainly could have been better), everyone had a good time, with some staying until the ball ended. With many nights in St Andrews becoming stale, the North Haugh Ball provided a fresh-take on the standard event.


  1. Sound system could have been better?! If St Andrews wasn’t full of clipboard types and boring types, students and visitors alike, the speakers could have and would have been cranked up much louder.


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