ALL roads lead to Wallsgreen Park in Bowhill this Sunday as the highlight of this year’s Highland Games season unfolds.
The Bowhill Highland Games raise the curtain on a year that saw record crowds return to events after an absence during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The president, Don Campbell, who is also the handicapper of the national circuit of the games, criss-crossed the country this summer, and also across the border, while a host of events took place.
Lochgelly man Don told The Times: “Crowds and competitors are on the rise this year across the country, and early indications are that Bowhill Highland Games will provide the perfect climax to the season.
“On the track, many competitors are looking for ‘league points’, in the running, cycling and heavyweight events and it looks like we are heading towards a ‘helicopter Saturday scenario’.
“Because we were able to stage and revive the Bowhill Highland Games last year, after a gap of 69 years, the potential for crowds and competitors was there for all to see and it shows in the increase in registrations and requests we have had. .
“A notable example of this is that we had contact after last year’s games with a lady from Canada, Marg Johnson (née Wallace).
“She left Bowhill in the mid-1950s and emigrated to Canada and continued her Highland dancing there and became one of the biggest names in Highland dancing in the world.
“Her company is well known in the Highland dancing world, and Marg and her family are coming to Scotland this Thursday to attend and sponsor the Highland dancing events at Bowhill!”
Don added: “We have had inquiries from visitors from America and Australia asking, ‘How can we get to the Bowhill Highland Games? “.
“We have added solo piping to our program this year and Bowhill Pipe Major, Greig Canning and Greg Wilson, have put on a competition like no other and our pipe judge is none other than Jimmy Banks (MBE) from Bowhill.
“We’ve added more stalls this year and a bouncy castle and teacups for the kids outside the ring, and we also have lots of fun races for kids and adults in our track programme.
“Included in that is the inter-school relay race and it all adds up to a very busy day.”
Don concluded, “Our games continue to grow as a ‘spectacle’, but equally important, our games grow as ‘The Gathering’, ‘A Highland Gathering’, ‘A Coming Home’ when people from the past and present, from everywhere, can meet and greet and relive old memories and create new ones.
Event calendar :
Pipe solo begins at 10:00 a.m., Highland dancing begins at 11:00 a.m.
Then at 11.20am there will be a wreath laying at the Village War Memorial and at 11.25am there will be a wreath laying at the Bowhill Cemetery Memorial in remembrance of those who died in the Bowhill Pit disaster in 1931.
At 11.30am the parade will set off from Bowhill Cemetery, led by the Lochgelly High School Pipe Band and Pipe Major Greig Canning.