THE chairman of the Rosneath Peninsula Highland Gathering says he’s looking forward to giving a warm welcome to a big crowd at the event this weekend.

The Gathering is expected to attract competitors from around the world to the Howie Park in Rosneath this Sunday, July 14 for a spectacular afternoon of piping, dancing, athletics and family entertainment.

The action begins when the gates open at 9am, and the official opening will be carried out at 1pm by Captain Craig Mearns, commanding officer of HMS Neptune, the Royal Navy’s shore-based establishment at HM Naval Base Clyde, and a former pupil of Rosneath Primary School.

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Chairman Robert MacIntyre said: “The Rosneath competitions have earned an international reputation, attracting competitors from around the world.

“One of the great pleasures for me and our chieftain for 2019, Captain Craig Mearns, who I am delighted to welcome back for a fourth year, is to meet and chat with as many of you as I can.

“Please do come and say hello if you see either of us walking the field throughout the day.”

The Gathering’s solo piping competition, which regularly attracts entries from around the world, starts at 9am, with the Highland dancing contests starting at 11am.

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Captain Mearns, who attended Rosneath Primary from 1975 to 1977 and is in his fourth year as the Gathering’ s chieftain, added: “A gathering is a traditional coming together of friends and neighbours, and as captain of the naval base at Faslane, I am aware that we as neighbours have a much larger responsibility than most to our friends in the local and wider communities around us.

“The naval base is the second largest single site employer in Scotland, and the Royal Navy, along with our industrial partners, work hard to ensure the base makes a positive economic, social and cultural contribution to both the local community and wider region.

“The Gathering is run by volunteers, funded by local businesses and organisations, for the benefit of all in the local community and visitors alike, who all want to share in and enjoy a memorable experience.

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“I lived on the peninsula for a few years as a young boy and attended Rosneath Primary School from 1975-1977. It’s great to come back and if you see me walking the field please come and say hello – I would love to meet you and have a chat.”

Admission to the event is £5 for adults, £3 for concessions, £2 for children and £10 for a family ticket.

Don’t miss next week’s issue of the Advertiser for full coverage of the event.