Evening that went straight to the heart

VALEN­TINE’S DAY: Live heart dis­sec­tion at Dundee ho­tel was not for the faint­hearted but proved a sell-out suc­cess

The Courier & Advertiser (Angus and The Mearns Edition) - - NEWS - jath­om­son@the­courier.co.uk janet Thom­son

For­get the red roses or a ro­man­tic din­ner for two – cou­ples want­ing to get to the heart of the mat­ter on Valen­tine’s night headed to the Mal­mai­son Ho­tel in Dundee for an evening like no other.

The lux­u­ri­ous set­ting was turned into a science lab that was most def­i­nitely not for the faint-hearted.

Love­birds seek­ing a night to re­mem­ber snapped up tick­ets for a live heart dis­sec­tion, and or­gan­is­ers were de­lighted to score a sell-out suc­cess.

Staff from the Cen­tre for Anatomy and Hu­man Iden­ti­fi­ca­tion (Cahid) at Dundee Univer­sity sliced open the an­i­mal or­gan in the name of science – with a spell­bound au­di­ence look­ing on.

The event was led by Claire Cun­ning­ham, a mor­tu­ary tech­ni­cian at the cen­tre, and was part of a na­tion­wide se­ries of Anatomy Nights in­tended to give mem­bers of the pub­lic the chance to learn all about the hu­man body.

Among those who put aside a night of romance for one of fact-find­ing and per­haps life-sav­ing was birth­day girl Katie Whyte from Dundee.

A neu­ro­science stu­dent at Dundee Univer­sity, she was cel­e­brat­ing her 30th birth­day with her friend Joanne Burns, 33, a bio-med­i­cal sci­en­tist.

Katie said: “I thought this was a nice way to get out of the house for my birth­day with my friend, but we will be cel­e­brat­ing with cock­tails later.”

Self-con­fessed “anatomy geek” Vicki Falls, 31, from Dundee, went along with fel­low mid­wife Bri­ony Camp­bell. Vicki said: “I am to­tally an anatomy geek, it runs in our bodies.

“I can’t think of any­thing more fun to do.”

Bri­ony was also look­ing for­ward to the dis­sec­tion and an op­por­tu­nity to test her knowl­edge.

“We will go out after but this will set us up for a good night out,” she said.

Paul Lan­gridge ,47, a gar­dener from Dundee, kept his part­ner, Linda Wylie, in sus­pense all day as to what his Valen­tine treat was.

He said: “We have done the flow­ers and choco­lates ear­lier to­day but I have been drop­ping hints like ‘have a heart’, and hav­ing a ‘heart to heart’ all day.

“Linda has no idea what we have come to.”

Linda, 47, a sup­port worker from Lau­rencekirk, said: “I am very ro­man­tic and like sur­prises.

“It is al­ways good fun do­ing things to­gether but I have no idea what is go­ing to hap­pen.”

All pro­ceeds from the evening went to the Bri­tish Heart Foun­da­tion.

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