New additions join favourites for Games Day
Countdown begins to event’s return
With just two weeks to go until one of the biggest events in the town’s calendar, organisers of Blairgowrie and Rattray Highland Games are working hard behind the scenes to ensure that everything is in place for the popular event’s return.
The traditional showpiece, which attracts thousands of visitors, is due to take place on Sunday, September 4, at Bogle’s Field off Essendy Road on the outskirts of the town.
It will be the first time in three years that the Games have taken place after the 2020 and 2021 editions of the event had to be cancelled due to the global coronavirus pandemic.
And chair of the volunteer committee, Pete Richardson, is keen to get as many local community groups involved in this year’s Games as possible – including in a new tug o’ war tournament for community organisations.
He said: “As Games Day draws closer we are working hard to ensure our first event in three years is a fantastic day out for all the family and for the local community and visitors to the area alike.
“All the traditional favourites – the dancing, heavyweights and piping competitions – will be taking place.
“The community tug o’ war between Blairgowrie and Rattray, and the Ardblair Stones – always a big crowdpleaser – are also set to return and there will also be the usual track and field events.
“We’re also hope to have the dog show, the hill race and more recent additions to the programme, such as a ‘mini’ Highland Games for wee ones run by the Rotary Club of Blairgowrie, and axe-throwing.
“And there will be a range of trade stands and food outlets, as well as the food and beer tent.”
Pete continued: “It has been a very difficult couple of years for many people and we are keen to support our local community as much as possible as
things begin to get back to normal.
“To that end we are looking to hear from any local community groups or organisations that would like to have a stand at the Games, or who would like to take part in a new fun tug o’ war competition for community groups that we are hoping to launch this year.
“The community tug o’ war is open to any family groups, local organisations or businesses that can put together a team of five people or any age or gender. Depending on how many teams signup, we hope to start the competition around 1.30pm.”
Efforts are also being made to reduce the carbon footprint of hosting the event with a new, free shuttle bus running between the Wellmeadow and Bogle’s Field to encourage local people visiting the games to leave their cars at home.
Pete said: “Due to rising fuel costs and the declared climate emergency, we are keen to reduce the number of cars attending the Games and would encourage anyone living locally to get the free shuttle bus from outside Davidson’s straight to the Games field.
“The shuttle bus, which is being run by the Freedom Coach Association, will run every 20 minutes or so, although
there will be a break for lunch between 1pm and 2pm.”
And he added that the committee was also keen to hear from any volunteers that might be interested in helping out on the day, commenting: “We’d also love to hear from anyone who would be able to help out with the setting up of the field in the run-up to the Games. We start setting up on the Thursday evening before the Games and are also on site on the Friday and Saturday, as well as Sunday morning.”
For further information or updates on Blairgowrie and Rattray Highland Games, follow the Facebook page or see the website www. blairgowriehighlandgames.co.uk
For more details on stands for local community groups, or trade stands at the Games – or if you have a few hours to spare and would like to help out setting up the field in the days before the event – email secretary@ blairgowriehighlandgames.co.uk.
Gates open at 10am. Tickets cost £8 for adults, £4 for children and concessions, under-fives free. Family tickets for two adults and two children are available, priced £20. Available online now. Car
parking is £1.