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Braemar Gathering (Braemar, United Kingdom)

The Braemar Gathering is one of the best known of the Highland Games and takes place annually on the first Saturday in September. Although gatherings have been recorded here for over 900 years, the origins of the current event lie in the formation in 1815 of a mutual aid society. The main trade in the area was wheel wrights and square rights and their annual parade, the Wrights’ Walk, developed into the Gathering. The Gathering became the main undertaking of the society and its successor organisations. Being close to Braemar Castle, one of the royal residences, meant the royal family, beginning with Queen Victoria, took an interest in the event and the current royal family are regular visitors. It is held on part of the Mar Estate, presented to the Society by the Duke of Fife in 1906. The programme includes all the activities traditionally associated with Highland Games: tossing the caber, hammer throwing, tug of war, foot races, highland dancing and piping. Seats are bookable in advance and usually sell out early, but the event can also be viewed from the surrounding grounds which extend to 12 acres.

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