2017 Highland Games Report

The 2017 Highland Games and Gala weekend attracted over 10,000 spectators to Bught Park before  a further 12,000 spectators arrived on Sunday evening to see Bryan Adams in concert.

Games day started with an exhibition shinty match before the Prima Dance Group took to the main field and had the crowd roaring their approval with a dazzling display. Games Chieftain Provost Helen Carmichael then stepped forward to induct Husband and Wife Team Neill and Elspeth Allan the Inverness Highland Games Hall of Fame.

After witnessing 110 competitors in the Games Highland Dancing Competitions showing them how it should be done; the traditional invitation to all and sundry to take place in the Mass Highland Fling produced tears on laughter as a record number of volunteers stepped forward including members of the crew of HM Queen Elizabeth and the Tartan Treckers who were warming up for a 10 mile sponsored walk along the Caledonian Canal to raise funds for Mikeysline.

Amongst the many other attractions during the weekend were performances by the City of Inverness and Royal British Legion Pipe Band; a fundraising Zip Slide over the River Ness for ARCHIE Highland; an expanded Wheelbarrow Grand Prix run by Inverness Culloden Rotary, and the debut of the Inverness Outlanders Group in the Inverness Clan Village.

At 2pm the crowd welcomed the members of Team Highland who will be competing in the Special Games in Sheffield in August to the field; and the smiles on the competitors faces told you everything you needed to know about how much it meant to them.

Midway through a superb day of fiercely contested competition; reigning Champion Sinclair Patience suffered the frustration of having to withdraw from the Heavy Events due to injury; and joined the crowd to watch the climax of one of the most thrilling contests in recent memory as Daniel Carlin, Craig Sinclair and Jamie Gunn battled for the Championship. Ultimately Carlin emerged victorious by a single point to the delight of an appreciative crowd who showed their appreciation to all the competitors.

The day ended on the best possible note as Aarons Monks of Australia stepped forward to become only the 9th man in the modern era to complete the daunting 252lb  Stonemasons Stone over the Bar Challenge. (He actually did it twice because he forgot to get it filmed for his family back home). 

See you on 21 July 2018!

Gerry Reynolds MSc
Inverness Events Manager
The Highland Council