Gearing up for annual Harpenden Highland Gathering

HARPENDEN’s annual Highland Gathering, now in its 16th year, promises to be the biggest and best to date.

The event, which is run by Harpenden Lions Club and is sponsored by the Herts Advertiser, takes place in Rothamsted Park on Sunday, July 10. It is already the largest Highland Gathering in the UK outside Scotland, offering a fun day out for all the family with a Scottish flavour, and raising funds for a host of deserving causes.

All the traditional attractions of the Highland Gathering will once again be on display, including pipe bands, marching, heavy events and Scottish dancing competitions.

The 42nd Highland Regiment, better known as The Black Watch, will be dressed in authentic uniforms from 1815 and putting on a display complete with real firing muskets.

There will also be crafters’ stalls, the Mont Blanc climbing wall, a display of classic cars and motorbikes, a funfair, food stalls and licensed bars.

Events will be taking place in two arenas, one for Highland Games with traditional events including hammer throwing and tossing the caber, and the main arena where there will be the ever-popular falconry display, shepherding of dogs and ducks and a gymnastics display from Roundwood Park School.

Harpenden Lions Club president David Cowan said: “In the 16 years Lions have been running the Gathering we have listened to feedback and made improvements and innovations which have helped to popularise the event whilst maintaining the Scottish theme. Innovations this year include the new location for the food court and terrace overlooking the site, a second arena for Highland Games and more displays.

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“A key strength of the Harpenden Highland Gathering is that it is a genuine community event run for the enjoyment of the local community and for charity.

“It could not take place without the help of other organisations and Lions gratefully acknowledge the support of the pipe bands, dancers, heavy event competitors, stallholders, sponsors and advertisers, and local organisations and individuals who help with the set-up, running and clearing-up after the event.”

Last year’s event saw more than 15,000 people pass through the gates, but this year aims to beat that and raise even more money for many worthwhile causes such as Prostate Cancer Charity and Grove House Hospice in St Albans.

The day starts at 10am and concludes at 5pm with a mass display of pipe bands. There is plenty of free parking nearby on Harpenden Common and advance ticket prices are �3 available from a number of locations across the district. Prices on the door are �6 and children under 16 are free when accompanied by an adult.

For further information visit or call the helpline on 0845 833 7426.