A PEEBLESSHIRE poet has been honoured for his contribution to Scots culture at the Saltire Awards.

The annual ceremony recognises outstanding contributions to Scottish society across different walks of life.

And Aonghas MacNeacail, who lives in Carlops, won the Arts and Humanities Award for his continuing and relevant work in poetry and song writing, both in Gaelic and English.

Aonghas, who was born in Uig on the Isle of Skye, is also a respected broadcaster, journalist, scriptwriter, librettist and translator.

After accepting his award at the Saltire Society’s Annual General Meeting on Saturday he said: “I am really honoured to receive this very special award.

"Hopefully it will spur me on to even bigger and better things in the future.

"It’s really humbling to join so many other talented individuals who have received a Fletcher of Saltoun award in years gone by.”

Nominations for the Andrew Fletcher of Saltoun award are made by the Saltire Society Council.

Last year, the Council decided to broaden the scope of the award to include three distinct categories with the aim of recognising a wider range of achievements and engaging wider public interest.

This year, the number of winners was extended from three to four with two separate individuals both receiving an award in recognition of their particular contribution to the Arts and Humanities.

Saltire Society convenor Professor Ian Brown said: “Once again this year, we were delighted to be able to honour four outstanding individuals, each of whom has made a unique and special contribution to Scottish culture and society.

"Through these awards, we always strive to give recognition to those particularly talented and driven people who help to make Scottish culture and society as vibrant and stimulating as it so clearly is today – as well as achieving wider recognition for Scotland on an international stage.”

Established in 1988, the Fletcher of Saltoun award forms part of the Saltire Society’s annual awards programme and seeks to recognise outstanding contributions to Scottish society across different walks of life.

The award celebrates the legacy of Andrew Fletcher of Saltoun, a seventeenth century Scottish writer and politician and a keen patron of the arts during his lifetime.

This year’s recipients include leading cancer researcher Professor Tessa Holyoake as well as landscape painter James Morrison and Andrew Kerr, a lifelong supporter of and leading campaigner for the Scottish arts and conservation.

Tessa Holyoake is a Professor of Experimental Haematology at the Institute of Cancer Sciences in Glasgow and a globally recognised specialist in chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML).

She received the Andrew Fletcher of Saltoun Award in recognition of her contribution to science.

Professor Holyoake said: “It is a real honour to have been recognised in this unique way and I think it is a great tribute to the outstanding work of everyone working at the Institute of Cancer Sciences.

"Over the past 12 years, that hard work has really put Glasgow on the map as a centre of global excellence in the fight against cancer. I am very proud of everything we have achieved so far but equally ambitious about what we want to achieve in the future.”