Scots in­vite world

The Press - Escape - - ESCAPE -

In ad­di­tion to next year’s govern­ment referendum on whether Scot­land should be in­de­pen­dent from the United King­dom, spec­tac­u­lar events form the coun­try’s 2014 Year of Home­com­ing.

The Scot­land Home­com­ing events in­clude an all-star con­cert to her­ald the open­ing of the Ry­der Cup, a huge flotilla to cel­e­brate the 50th an­niver­sary of the Forth Road Bridge, Europe’s big­gest brass band fes­ti­val and a thrilling re-en­act­ment of the Bat­tle of Ban­nock­burn.

About 100 events have been un­veiled, with hun­dreds more ex­pected over the next few months.

The five themes for Home­com­ing 2014 – ac­tive, food and drink, creative, nat­u­ral, and an­ces­try – are all well rep­re­sented.

Vis­i­tors can look for­ward to new events such as the John Muir Fes­ti­val in East Loth­ian to her­ald the open­ing of the John Muir coastto-coast route and a spec­tac­u­lar Ry­der Cup open­ing con­cert, as well as many ex­ist­ing events, in­clud­ing Hog­manay, Ed­in­burgh fes­ti­vals and the Spirit of Spey­side Whisky Fes­ti­val.

With about 50 mil­lion peo­ple around the world claim­ing Scot­tish her­itage, di­as­pora and clan-re­lated events form a key part of Home­com­ing.

Cel­e­bra­tions will in­clude the 700th an­niver­sary of the Bat­tle of Ban­nock­burn (a re­sound­ing vic­tory over the English), the Aboyne High­land Games, the In­ver­ness High­land Meet­ing 2014, the 10th Clan Munro In­ter­na­tional Gath­er­ing, the Dun­fermline Bruce Fes­ti­val and Pip­ing Live!

‘‘Scot­land is pre­par­ing to wel­come the world dur­ing our sec­ond Year of Home­com­ing in 2014,’’ First Min­is­ter Alex Sal­mond says.

Mike Cant­lay, chair­man of Vis­itScot­land, says: ‘‘With the Com­mon­wealth Games in Glas­gow and the Ry­der Cup at Gle­nea­gles, the eyes of the world will be firmly on Scot­land in 2014. Next year’s Home­com­ing will po­si­tion our coun­try as dy­namic and creative with a rich his­tory and cul­ture.’’

Up-to-date Home­com­ing in­for­ma­tion can be found at come­toscot­land.com.au/ home­com­ing2014

2013 is the Year of Nat­u­ral Scot­land, in­spir­ing its peo­ple and vis­i­tors to cel­e­brate Scot­land’s out­stand­ing nat­u­ral beauty, land­scapes and bio­di­ver­sity as it pre­pares to wel­come the world in 2014. To find out more about Scot­land’s out­stand­ing nat­u­ral beauty visit scot­land.com/ nat­u­ral

For hol­i­day in­for­ma­tion, go to vis­itscot­land. com

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