Glamis Castle welcomed the Highland Games hopefuls of the future as a taster for this weekend’s main event.
Strathmore Games takes place at the Angus landmark on Sunday after a two-year Covid absence.
But more than 300 local primary school pupils threw themselves into a junior games on Friday.
It was the welcome return of an event aimed at growing the grass roots of the sport.
The caber and weights might have been smaller scale.
But the competitive spirit and fun factor were as big as the real thing.
Started back in 2015
The event is part of a programme which has seen around 1,000 Angus youngsters get a taste of Highland Games in the past few weeks.
And Lorna Cochrane of the Strathmore committee says its fantastic to have the event back after the pandemic.
It’s become the traditional Friday warm up to the main weekend spectacle.
“Highland Games are such an important part of our culture and heritage so it’s really important we try to encourage the next generation to get involved and secure their future,” said Lorna.
“We’ve gone out into schools to get them involved in the traditional games events.
Active Schools partnership
“It’s organised in partnership with Angus Active Schools and without their cluster coordinator Magnus Moncrieff it really wouldn’t be possible,” said Lorna.
“It’s a great partnership and has really built up the connections with all the schools.
“But the main thing is the junior games at Glamis Castle for the rural primaries.
“It’s so great to bring the kids into the proper Highland Games setting where the crowds will be on Sunday.”
“We try to make the experience as much like the big games as we can.
“So we have Dundee City Pipe Band there and adult heavies to demonstrate their events.”
The full junior programme involves the Kirriemuir cluster primaries of Airlie, Cortachy, Eassie, Glamis, Isla, Newtyle, Tannadice and the two town schools at Northmuir and Southmuir.
And Isla primary claimed early honours in a separate tug o’war competition which has already been staged.
“The determination in that is every bit as strong as the adult games,” said Lorna.
“We have also already been back to Northmuir and Southmuir for their games.
“Over the course of three weekends we will involve around 1,000 children and it’s amazing when you look at it like that.”
More shots by Courier photographer of the Strathmore junior Highland Games at Glamis Castle.