Atholl Gathering returns after three-year hiatus

THE Atholl Gathering will return to Blair Castle this month following a three-year break due to the pandemic.

More than 4,000 spectators are expected to attend the Highland Games, which will be overseen by the Marquis of Tullibardine, heir to the 12th Duke of Atholl.

The event kicks off on Saturday 28 May, when Atholl Estates hosts the Atholl Highlanders Parade.

The following day, the Atholl Gathering will feature a line-up of dancers, pipers, and strong men.

Andrew Bruce Wooten, chief executive at Blair Castle, said: “The parade and Atholl Gathering hold tremendous significance because they are firmly rooted in the history of Blair Castle and sit at the heart of the local community.

“The very first was held in 1845 to celebrate being awarded royal colours, and with these the right to bear arms, by Queen Victoria.

“Since then, the Atholl Highlanders and these events represent traditions and values very close to all our hearts.”

He added: “I’m delighted to see both the parade and the games back after the enforced break.

“It is going to be a wonderful weekend, which will bring both international and local visitors together in a celebration of our heritage with fun and spectacle.”

Read more stories about Scotland’s Highland Games on Scottish Field’s culture pages.