Inaugurated 1864
Member of the S.H.G.A.

Letter from the Chairman 2010

The games of 2009 were again highly successful, the weather was perfect, despite all the rain that fell in the previous weeks. The attendance was excellent, despite the financial climate and we are privileged to be able to continue the tradition of our games. There was another record entry for all events. This year we increased our athletic events with the addition of a new 100 yard Scottish Medal, sponsored by The Perth Arms of Dunkeld along with our already well established 800 meter race sponsored by Bidwell’s Estate Agents. The only casualty of the weather was the cycling events due to safety reasons.

Our guest from our twinned games of Livermore in California was once again in attendance and given a tremendous reception. We welcomed Maryalice Fatlings the President of the LARPD Board to our 2009 event. Maryalice was the original representative who came to Scotland to discuss the possibility of a twinning between our two games. The board are responsible for the running of the Livermore Games. 2007 was the inaugural presentation of the Livermore Shield on behalf of Livermore games to the heavyweight contestant of merit on the day. The Birnam Cup has gone to their Californian equivalent which I have again had the pleasure of presenting in person as the Honorary Chieftain of the Livermore Highland Games in May last year. I was accompanied by the Secretary of our games, Peter Grieg, and fellow committee member Willie Robertson.

With competition so fierce last year, we will once again hope for a great turn out. But for those not feeling so energetic, there’s always the world famous haggis eating contest which is worth the admission on its own (sponsored by Dunkeld Butchers). As in the past, a bottle of whisky will be given to the furthest travelled visitor to the games, so please sign in at the Secretary’s tent; you never know, it could be you.

This year’s proceedings will officially start with The Blairgowrie, Rattray & District pipe band who will be playing at the Cross in Dunkeld at 11:45 am. The traditional march to the park which will start at the north car park at 12:30 pm prompt led by our new chieftain Thomas Steuart Fothringham. Mr Robert decided that it was time to retire from the position of chieftain, so his son Thomas has followed the family tradition and kindly filled the position.

We had a very special guest, the Earl of Eglinton, who was here to commemorate the 170th anniversary of the Atholl Highlanders’ tour to Eglinton which took place in 1839. As part of these anniversary celebrations, the Duke of Atholl allowed the Highlanders to present on the games field with the detachment’s cannon which fired to officially salute the chieftain.

The committee and I look forward to welcoming you in 2010 and beyond.

Rae Pattillo
Birnam Highland Games