Mellerstain’s Highland fling

Mellerstain Highland Games.
Mellerstain Highland Games.

MELLERSTAIN House near Gordon hosted its first Highland games at the weekend.

Changeable weather knocked expected crowds, though an estimated 700 people enjoyed the event organised by former World Highland Games champion Hamish Davidson.

The day combined traditional games events with country fair activities and featured 2010 Ultimate UK Strongman runner-up, 32-year-old Gary Gardner of England; Scott Thompson, five times Scottish shot putt champion; and six others in the day’s heavy events, including the shot putt, stone throw, 28lbs and 56lbs weights, caber toss and hammer throwing.

Dancers performed the traditional Highland fling, sword dance, Seann Triubhas, jigs, hornpipes and reels, and bands played traditional music. Graeme Nielson’s team from Strathblane country estate put on a display of birds of prey and staged falconry flying displays.

There were fly casting displays and people had the chance to have a go at the sport with world record holder Peter S. Anderson.

British international and Olympic tutors taught those wanting to have a go at archery and Braidwood Clays’ Joyce Black helped others try clay pigeon shooting.

Lord Haddington blamed the weather for lower numbers of people than organiser Mr Davidson had hoped for.

But he said: “It was a great display. The strongmen were wonderful and the dancers were very good, as were the bands.”