Clans flock to Bendigo for day out

GALLERY: Scots Day Out in Bendigo

THOUSANDS of people crowded into Rosalind Park on Saturday to celebrate all things Scottish.

All aspects of Scottish culture are on show from the pipe bands and highland dancing to traditional dishes such as haggis and black pudding.

Saturday was the second Scots Day Out Bendigo has hosted.

The success and interest from last year's event ensured the festival's return.

VIDEO: Leigh Sharp

The day started with highland pipe bands and dancers parading down View Street to Rosalind Park for the start of the festival which included stalls with traditional wares, a swordplay arena, traditionally made haggis and black pudding and plenty of Scottish entertainment.

"It's terrific to see the community embracing the concept on such a hot day," Scots Day Out chieftain Tim Robertson said.

"We're on track for an impressive attendance. It's a stirring occasion with the bands and music.

"People with Scottish heritage feel that affinity with the bands and that's why it has such a broad appeal."

Mr Robertson said the range of people who made the effort to come to Scots Day Out was extraordinary.

"We've toured the stalls and the range of food and handicrafts and all the things that come with a Highland gathering," he said.

"It's nice to see people coming from so far to sell their wares and the Bendigo people are enjoying it."

Traditionally the position of chieftain – which Mr Robertson held for the festival – would lead his clan into battle.

Before the late 18th century, chieftains would also have a large amount of authority.

Today it is considered a position of high social dignity.

"It's a a great honour but I'm pleased today that there are no skirmishes between clans that need settling," Mr Robertson said.

The Scots Day Out chieftain instead got to enjoy the day touring the festival and enjoying some haggis for lunch.

"The bands are my favourite. It's something I've been involved with since I was very young," he said.

"Seeing all the bands never fails to excite me - particularly when there are so many gathered as there was (on Saturday)."

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