Saturday, June 25, 2011
Thursday, June 9, 2011
The Atholl Gathering took place on the last Sunday in May at Blair Castle under glorious sunshine, after the showers and gusty winds had disappeared. The last fully-armed private army in Europe, the Duke of Atholl's very own Atholl Highlanders, were on parade on the Highland Games field with the Pipes and Drums and their two-pounder field gun. The firing of the field gun at 1pm opened the games with a big bang. The annual Atholl Highlanders' Race (above) was great fun with your friendly neighbourhood brewer running as fast as he could to get to the firkin of Inkie Pinkie. I must confess I wasn't in the top quartile, but at least I wasn't in the last either, though I did win the rifle shooting trophy, beaing the gamekeepers and regular shooters! The beer went down rather quickly, we think it was something to do with the double quick tempo of the Atholl Highlanders march being played by Pipe Major...
The Highlanders continued the entertainment with a relay race between the Officers, Pipeband and Rifle Company, a very interesting Foursome Reel by a quartet of Officers, the Sword Dance from a trio of Jocks and finally a Tug o' War between the Band and the Rifle Company. A grand day out for all and washed down nicely with a pint or two of very tasty beer. Hope to see you there next year at Blair Castle on the last weekend in May.