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Cowal Gathering

Paul will attend the Cowal Gathering on Saturday 25th August 2012. As Chieftain he will present the trophies to the winners in the World Highland Dancing Championships, before accepting the salute from the spectacular massed bands and presenting the winning bands with some of the most prestigious trophies in the pipe band world.   Cowal Gathering Event Manager, Malcolm Barclay, said “we are delighted That Paul has accepted our invitation to be this year’s Chieftain and look forward to welcoming him back to Dunoon. His passion for Scotland and its culture is well known and we are certain he will enjoy his day at one of the finest cultural events Scotland has to offer.”   Paul Murton said “it is a privilege and an honour to be asked to act as the games’ chieftain for the Day – especially so because I have many fond memories of the event from my childhood, joining the crowds to thrill at the march past of the Thousand Pipers. And now I’ll be taking the salute!”

Paul was brought up among the hills of Cowal, where his parents owned and ran the Ardentinny Hotel on the shores of Loch Long. Paul attended the single teacher Ardentinny Primary school, before moving up to Dunoon Grammar School.   In recent years Paul has worked in television and film, across a range of genres. His drama credits include The Bill, Casualty, the period drama Bramwell, and the Scottish soap opera, River City. Returning to Scotland with his young family, Paul worked as a freelance producer/director on a number of documentaries for the BBC, Channel Four and STV. In 2007, he began a career in front of the camera as the presenter and director of Scotland’s Clans. More recently, he has become associated the BBC series Grand Tours of Scotland, which he writes, directs and presents.

COWAL HIGHLAND GATHERING RECOGNISED IN NATIONAL EVENTS AWARDS

The National Outdoor Events Association (NOEA), the UK’s leading outdoor events trade association, held their National Events Awards at the end of March.
At the awards ceremony Cowal Highland Gathering was announced as runner up in the NOEA Scotland category. The NOEA say “this award aims to give recognition to those events which have achieved the highest levels of excellence or have made a major contribution to the professionalism of the event industry in Scotland.”
Cowal Gathering Event Manager Malcolm Barclay said “We are absolutely delighted to have been recognised in such a prestigious award. Although we would have loved to have won the category, being runner up to an event of the calibre of the Royal Highland Show is still a major achievement, particularly when you consider some of the other huge events held in Scotland in the past 12 months. This announcement is a huge boost to the small team of staff and volunteers that bring the event together each year. I wish to thank all of our volunteers, event partners, Argyll and Bute Council, our sponsors, competitors and visitors for their continued support of the Cowal Gathering and hope that next year we can make first place our own.”
Tom Clements, Chairman of NOEA Scotland commented “this year’s standard was tremendous, it is a great shame that we couldn’t have 2 winners, but Cowal Highland Gathering must be congratulated in being the runners up and indeed for producing a wonderful event, enjoyed by many as well as having a profound impact on the local Dunoon economy”
The Cowal Highland Gathering takes place annually in August in Dunoon, Argyll and Bute and is supported by Argyll and Bute Council.
Donald MacVicar, Argyll and Bute Council’s head of community and culture, said: “This is great news, and a huge achievement for what is by some distance the biggest event in Argyll and Bute’s calendar.”
“The Cowal Highland Gathering is almost 120 years old, and is now in the diaries of many of the world’s top highland games competitors. Over each of the last few years the event has boasted some 3,500 competitors from as far afield as Canada, Australia and South Africa, and Dunoon and the surrounding area regularly welcomes 15,000-20,000 visitors for the three day show.
“It is a vital contributor to the Cowal economy, as well as one of the country’s best-loved and most spectacular Highland gatherings. We are delighted that it challenged an event of the calibre of the Royal Highland Show for this coveted award, and we look forward to the Cowal Highland Gathering continuing to go from strength to strength in the future.”
For further information visit http://www.noea.org.uk or contact Malcolm Barclay, Event Manager, Cowal Highland Gathering on 01369 703206.

COWAL HIGHLAND GATHERING NOMINATED IN TOP NATIONAL AWARDS

The Cowal Highland Gathering, the largest highland gathering in Scotland, is delighted to announce that it has reached the final two in the prestigious National Outdoor Events Association’s NOEA Scotland Award.

The National Outdoor Events Association is the trade association specialising in the outdoor event industry. Each year they hold an awards ceremony recognising the events and individuals in the event industry that have excelled in the previous year. It is the Oscars of the Events Industry.

Categories in the awards include “Event Innovation of the Year”, “Small Event of the Year”, “Event Organiser of the Year” and the NOEA Scotland Award for the Scottish Event of the Year.  It is in this category that the Cowal Gathering has reached the final two.

Cowal Gathering Event Manager, Malcolm Barclay, said “I am delighted that the Cowal Highland Gathering has been recognised in this way by our industry peers, it is amazing recognition of the outstanding work done by our small team of volunteers, conveners, suppliers, competitors, sponsors and the local council who are all so important to the success of the event. It is also recognition of the efforts Dunoon and it’s people make to accommodate the event and the thousands of people who attend. To win the award would be an honour, but just reaching the final two against such tough competition feels amazing.”

The winners will be announced at the National Outdoor Events Association Awards Ceremony in Birmingham on the 22nd March.

COWAL GAMES 2011

To hear interviews with many of the visitors, competitors and those involved with the games including Blythe Duff click here

Cheftain AnnouncedCowalHighland Gathering were pleased to announce that Blythe Duff, star of ITV’s Taggart is to be this years Chieftain. Blythe Duff will attend the event on Saturday to present the prizes and take the salute from the Massed Bands

 BFPA LIVE!Join us on Cowal Games Saturday for Big Fat Party Anthems Live, many of our regular listeners will know Big Tommy from his Party Anthems that go out in the wee small hours. We are very glad that he has agreed to come and entertain us live in the Queens Hall on the 27th August for a great party to round of the Games weekend.

He will be joined by G-Man from the group ‘Bags of Rock’ .  Also on stage will be DCR’s DJ’s and BFPA DJ’s including Steven Cook, Disco Stu, Rab C, Jimmy and Borat. Our special guests the Tutti Frutti’s will be performing a special set, a wee bit different from their normal routine I hear. The event starts at 9.30pm and finishes at 2.00am, tickets cost £11.20 and can be purchased online. This event is only for the over 18′s.
When the dancing is finished Big Tommy will not be stopping as he will decamp to the studio to continue broadcasting his BFPA live until 7.00am. Then at 7.45am it will be breakfast time at the Swallow Cafe before we wave the BFPA crew off on the ferry.COWAL GATHERING CEILIDHIf you are looking for something a wee bit more traditional the Gathering are holding a family ceilidh on the Friday night in the Queen’s Hall with the Ballochmyle Band leading the dancing. Tickets are £11.20 for adults and £6.20 for children, for more information and to buy tickets visit the Cowal Gathering WebsiteWhats On This Year

Thursday

Highland Dancing Scottish National Championships

Classic Car Display Prizegiving

5K Cowal Run

Friday

Highland Dancing Scottish Championships

Solo Piping Competitions – Senior & Junior

Primary School Athletics

Heavy Athletics

Burgh Cup Competition for Solo Piping

Saturday

Cowal Pipe Band Championship

Argyllshire Highland Dancing Championship

Drum Major Dress Competition

Drum Major M & D Pre-Premier Dancing Competition

Heavy Athletics

Ceilidh Tent

World Highland Dancing Championship Finals

Wrestling

Kids Entertainment Tent

Drum Major’s Mace over the Bar Competition

Massing of the Bands and Cowal Pipe Band Prizegiving Ceremony

Bands march down Argyll Street

Western Ferries Fireworks Display

 

Billy Forsyth MBE M.C. for the Dancing Competitions

Cowal Highland Gathering 2010

This year the games are on the 26th, 27th and 28th August with all the usual favourites and some new ones including the one that we are most excited about, that is Dunoon Community Radio will be broadcasting live from the games on all three days so if you can’t make it don’t worry as we will bring you all the atmosphere, live music and interviews with many of the musicans, officals and anybody else who will speak to us. we will also be joined by some the presenters from Celtic Music Radio. in the run up to the Gathering we will be bringing you information of the many bands and dancers taking part plus other bits of interesting news. So listen to Douglas and Victor’s Late, Late, Late Very Late Breakfast Show every night from 6pm – 7pm except Saturday to hear the latest.

Cowal Highland Gathering 2009

Here are some pictures taken on Saturday in 2009.

As bands have beome more competitve the number of them marching up Argyll Street in the morning has dwindled so this year Gathering Around organised a march setting off from the Castle Gardens at 12noon.

The Hillbillies on their amazing bikes led the procession Hillbillies CG09

Following them where the Argyll MajorettesArgyll Majorrettes

Cowal Pipe Band resplendant in their new uniform where one of three bands to take part

Cowal Pipe Band CG09

The Flags of the many Nations participating in the Gathering where carried by people from their homelandsFlags of Nations

They where followed by Clan Lamont, also participating where The Cowal Knights with Robert the Bruce and members of the Veritas Veriat who had also being entertaining the audience in the Argyll Gardens.

In the park there was lots to see what with the various piping competitions, dancing competitions, heavy events, The ceildh tent and the various stalls

The Grade 1 and Grade 2 competitions in progressPipers on Field

The womens weight throwing competition

Women Weight Competition

Skerryvore playing in The Ceildh Tent to an enrapted audienceSkerryvore

Dunoon Argyll Pipe BandDunoon Argyll Pipe Band competing in the final of the Grade 4A where they came seventh. Dunoon Grammar School where also taking part and came 8th in the Novice Grade

5 Comments

  1. BLYTHE DUFF TO BE HONORARY CHIEFTAIN says:

    Cheftain Announced
    CowalHighland Gathering were pleased to announce that Blythe Duff, star of ITV’s Taggart is to be this years Chieftain. Blythe Duff will attend the event on Saturday to present the prizes and take the salute from the Massed Bands
    Ms Duff said “I am so delighted to be asked to be Honorary Chieftain of the Cowal Highland Gathering 2011. I am aware of the incredible amount of effort that goes into producing the games, so I look forward to experiencing all they have to offer.

    “Having family in Ardentinny and a holiday home on the Isle of Bute, I know how important they are to Argyll and Bute and to Scotland. I look forward to catching up with the competitors and would like to take this opportunity to wish them all the best for the event.”

    Cowal Gathering event manager Malcolm Barclay said: “We are delighted that Blythe Duff has agreed to be our Honorary Chieftain this year and look forward to welcoming her to Dunoon.
    “Blythe is well known for her stage and TV acting career but she is also a keen supporter of Scottish culture and the arts. We are sure she will enjoy her day with us, particularly taking the salute from the massed bands, which is breathtaking.”

  2. Cowal Games Memories says:

    Hi guys doing a great job at Dunoon radio. My gran allways spoke about the Cowal Games and how she loved go there when she was younger. Dunoon is a lovely place regards maria

  3. Lammel says:

    Hello there! I really enjoy reading your site and looking at the photosI will come back to keep reading and updates

  4. James Douglas says:

    Hi to everyone at DCR,

    Thanks for the great effort you’re putting in to bring us the show all the way to Sydney. I just heard an Aussie accent (from Tassie) and didn’t it sound strange in your setting!

    I hope the rain stops for you because it is just so much more enjoyable when the sun’s out and all the bands can be seen without their capes.

    I wonder when there will be live vision of the stadium? Because we’re 9 hours ahead at this time of year we miss the march back down Argyll Street. As a kid it always seemed more exciting when the bands had a few drams doon their throstles – especially when the maces went skywards – to land who knew where!

    All the best and thanks again.

    James Douglas (ex Innellan)

  5. William Stranney says:

    Hello everyone:
    I am researching the history of a small pipe band called St Patrick’s, Erinagh (a townland near Downpatrick, Co. Down, NI). They took part in the pipe band contest at the Dunoon Highland gathering sometime in the 1930s or 40s. Is there anyone I could contact who would have kept a record of old competition results of the pipe band contests at these gatherings? This is a very long shot I know, but, if you don’t ask …..! Thank you. Any help will be much appreciated.
    Billy.



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