FOR a one of a kind birthday celebration, friends and colleagues of the late Derek Watson will perform a selection of his favourite plays, poems and music as a final goodbye.

On Wednesday, November 6, those who knew Derek best will take to the stage at the Òran Mór Theatre, Glasgow to share the art he loved and to tell their best remembered stories of their friend.

Derek's partner, Will Scott told us: "The 6th of November would have been Derek's 71st birthday. So this is a very special way to celebrate him."

Derek, the former owner of Linton Books, West Linton, passed away in 2018 aged 69. The multifaceted and multi-talented Derek made a name for himself in the theatre and pantomime scenes, being given the nickname 'Uncle Derek'.

Will explained: "The idea came from John Jack who had performed with Derek in Glasgow.

"It had never occurred to me before but I thought it was an excellent idea."

The show will comprise of two acts - two of Derek's passions - Act One: Words and Act Two: Music.

As a bookshop owner, author and actor, words were an unavoidable part of Derek's life. Two poems by Hugh MacDiarmid will be performed by actor, Gavin Mitchell and Derek's friend and actress, Gerda Stevenson.

Will also hopes that Derek's former colleague, actor and author, Rupert Everett will make an appearance to read an extract from Alexander McCall Smith's book 'Friends, Lovers, Chocolate' which Derek features in to help the lead character.

The second act, music, will display Derek's love for opera and classical musicians.

Derek's former pantomime deputy, Julia Lynch, will perform six of the musical excerpts with her students from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Emma Mockett and Matthew McKinney.

Emma Mockett was in fact a recipient of a scholarship to visit the Bayreuth Festival in Germany courtesy of the Scottish Wagner Society, of which Derek was the founder in 1984.

Will added: "He [Derek] was always keen to give young artists every oportunity and support."

A piece of music which Derek wrote nearly 30 years ago will aslo be performed. 'The Edge of Tomorrow' was written for Phillida Bannister and Alpin Smart, who have continued to perform this piece ever since its creation.

In September the remaining stock from Linton Books was sold in a final store opening.

Will said: "When we opened the doors of the shop we were stunned by the number of people out on the pavement waiting to come in.

"It was great to see the shop so full."

Although there are many people already going to the Glasgow performance, spaces are still available in the theatre. There will also be a minibus provided to transport people from West Linton to the city.

"I'm really looking forward to it," Will said. "Everyone's been so generous in volunteering for the performance, the theatre has even waived the hiring fee which we're so grateful for.

"It's a real tribute to Derek that they've given up their time to do this."

The performance is free and begins at 7pm, ending at 9pm with time to mingle with old friends afterwards.

It is necessary to book place for the memorial show. To do so, email

To book a seat on the minibus leaving West Linton, email