Plans are well underway for the Tartan Day Scotland Festival 2014, the celebration of Scotlandand the Scots which takes place across Angus from 5-13 April 2014. Almost forty events have already been added to the Tartan Day Scotland Festival programme, including a major Homecoming Scotland 2014 event, which is being held in Arbroath on the weekend of 5/6 April.
“We’ve had a fabulous response to this year’s Tartan Day Scotland Festival, with local organisations and businesses arranging and getting involved in events throughout Angus,”said Cllr Mairi Evans, Angus Council Economic Development spokesperson.“This year, we’re thrilled to be hosting a key Homecoming Scotland event in Arbroath and it’s wonderful to see the support being provided to this weekend of celebrations, which is expected to welcome high numbers of additional visitors to the area.”
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “The Tartan Day Scotland Festival in Arbroath is set to capture the very essence of the Year of Homecoming Scotland.
“This is an opportunity for local people and for those from further afield to come together and enjoy Scotland’s rich history, its eclectic culture and its pioneering legacy to the world. It doesn’t matter if you’re not a history buff – there really is something for everyone – from fantastic seafood and maritime demonstrations to music and street performers – I think it’s the perfect opportunity visit to Scotland’s east coast.”
The Tartan Day Scotland Homecoming Weekend in Arbroath will focus on two of the town’s main visitor attractions – Arbroath Abbey and ArbroathHarbour – and will kick off with a ceilidh organised by Arbroath and Area Partnership on the evening of Friday, April 4.
Throughout the weekend, there will be guided tours of– and free entry to - historic Arbroath Abbey. There will also be a medieval encampment in the grounds and craft demonstrations, including calligraphy, combat, juggling and a working forge, similar to the one used to make the iron shoes for the horses of the Scottish Knights who travelled to Arbroath in 1320 to sign the famous Declaration of Arbroath.
Arbroath’s maritime heritage will be in the spotlight at Arbroath Harbour. At the Taste of Angus event in the Fish Market, foodies will be able to sample the very best of local produce, including freshly-caught seafood and, of course, Arbroath Smokies. The visitor centre overlooking Arbroath Marina will host demonstrations of traditional fishing skills, while the nearby Signal Tower Museum, once home to the light keepers of the Bell Rock Lighthouse and their families, will be the backdrop for sea shanties, storytelling and re-enactments of the lives of the local fisher families in days long gone.
Saturday’s Homecoming Scotland celebrations will also feature street performers and live music on Arbroath High Street and guided walks of Arbroath Abbey’s ancient graveyard, Old Arbroath and, as darkness falls, the town’s haunted most spots.
A Tayroots Family History Day will be held on Sunday, April 6 at the Webster Memorial Theatre. This will consist of talks from leading genealogists and historians and the chance for people from near and far to seek advice and information from members of local and family history groups, archivists and other relevant organisations.
At lunchtime that day, the Massed Angus Pipe Bands will lead the way to Arbroath Abbey, where Arbroath Abbey Timethemes will re-enact the April 6, 1320 Signing of the Declaration of Arbroath. For the first time in many years, this ceremony will take place within the walls of Arbroath Abbey, close to where the original document was signed.
Arbroath’s Tartan Day Scotland Homecoming Weekend will conclude with a display of the archives of Auchmithie and a screening of vintage local film footage in the WebsterTheatre.
“The Homecoming Weekend is a wonderful opportunity to welcome back to Angus the descendants of those who left our shores many years ago,” said Cllr Evans. “By holding this event during the Tartan Day Scotland Festival, we will be celebrating Scotlandwith the people of Scotlandand ancestral Scots from across the globe.”
Further information about The Tartan Day Scotland Festival 2014, including the Tartan Day Scotland Homecoming event in Arbroath on 5/6 April, is available online at www.tartandayscotland.com. To keep up to date with the latest news about the Tartan Day Scotland Festival,‘like’ the Tartan Day Scotland facebook page.