Aboyne boost for new Games heritage centre

The massed pipe bands performing at the 2017 Aboyne Games, the success of which made the donation possible
The massed pipe bands performing at the 2017 Aboyne Games, the success of which made the donation possible

Deeside’s newest tourist attraction has been given a major boost from Aboyne Highland Games.

The organisers of this Saturday’s Games have donated £10,000 to the World Highland Games Centre in Braemar to assist with the cataloguing of archive material.

Set to open in September, the new heritage attraction will help preserve the sport’s rich history, while telling of its evolution and export around the world.

Located at the venue of the Braemar Gathering, the £2.5million centre will be a global focal point for Games enthusiasts.

Aboyne’s donation will be used to officially archive and catalogue hundreds of items – including results, medals, trophies, photographs and memorabilia.

The process will help with the preservation of the items which have been donated by the public, former competitors, Highland Games across Scotland and the SHGA, the sport’s governing body.

The success of last year’s Aboyne event, which celebrated its 150th anniversary with a visit from the Queen, helped to make the substantial donation possible.

Alistair Grant, Games chairman, said: “The World Highland Games Centre is set to be a fantastic new year-round asset for Royal Deeside.

“It will provide a venue that educates and informs the public and brings Highland Games together to celebrate their unique and deep-rooted contribution to Scottish history and culture.

“Aboyne Highland Games is very pleased to be able to assist the centre as it undertakes an extensive cataloguing of archive results and materials.

David Geddes, Braemar Royal Highland Charity president, said: “We remain on track to open the first phase of the centre this September. Certain elements will follow thereafter.

“One such element is the archiving of over 200 years of Highland Games history, which is a large and important project, but work is underway.

“This archive should make it easier to access information on athletes and results from the past. We are grateful to the many folks who have been supporting the project and in particular Aboyne Highland Games for its generous support.”