The organisers of the spectacular Cowal Gathering highland games are working to guarantee that the 2014 event will be one to remember.
Plans for this year’s event are already at an advanced stage, with chair Ronnie Cairns aiming for the 2014 experience to be a hit with both contestants and spectators.
He says: ‘We have had some very positive meetings with our partner organisations, and I’m delighted with the progress we’re making towards finalising the details of the 2014 Gathering.
‘In particular, we are working closely with the Glasgow and West of Scotland Pipe Band Association in a bid to enhance the pipe band competition and bring the fun back for the many hundreds of pipe bandsmen and women from all over the world who come to compete here.
‘We’ve taken on board suggestions made by both competitors and spectators, and we also have a few other ideas up our sleeve to ensure that the 2014 Cowal Highland Gathering will once again prove to be one of Scotland’s top family events.
‘We look forward to announcing the details of this year’s games over the next few months, but it will of course include the usual mix of Highland dancing, pipe bands, traditional wrestling, heavy athletics, ceilidh music and children’s entertainment.
‘I’d encourage everyone to keep the last weekend in August free so they can come and join us for what promises to be a spectacular occasion.’
The lesson to be learned form the Cowal Gathering is never to be complacent and always to have the drive to refresh and reinvent an event from the inside – and before you have no choice.
Had the organisers listened to the many complaints and suggestions from the pipe bands over the years – on the physical and practical arrangements around the Cowal Pipe Band Championships, they would not have lost the fifth major pipe band championships of the year.
It is very good indeed to see that they are now consulting and listening and appear to be galvanised to improve and develop the gathering.
Thie 2014 event takes place from Thursday 28th to Saturday 30th August. More and new information is on the Cowal Gathering website here,
And For Argyll would echo Ronnie Chairs encouragement for everyone to keep these dates free in their diaries. This is a fabulous event – and the 2013 games already showed clear evidence of a spirited and creative response to the disappointment of losing the major pipe band championships. It sounds as if they have some interesting and novel ideas in the pipeline.