In what is normally a wee sleepy village just off of the A9, approximately 10 miles south of Inverness, Tomatin became the venue for something of a great gathering. After the Battle of Culloden some of the Jacobite force headed south for Ruthven Barracks to re-group, in a similar fashion Tomatin is located in the same direction so the similarities of this event became the same. This gathering however was not a Jacobite event by any means, but fellow patriots who would or could probably be considered by most to be the unlikeliest of compatriots. The event was funded by four groups, The Saints and Sinners MCC, Crann Tara,
Siol Nan Gaidheal and the Tomatin Inn.
For those who were either local or from the public, but non members to any of the groups who were lucky enough to get in, must have wondered to what kind of event they had came into. There were leather clad tattooed bikers, some with kilts on from the Saints and Sinners, there were members of Siol Nan Gaidheal donning the black T-Shirts [representing Scotland in mourning] and ourselves Crann Tara wearing either our plaids or kilts.
Now you may consider this to be a right mixture, but the atmosphere was the friendliest and family orientated you could ever imagine.
Of course what helped make the night so special was the entertainment provided by firstly Ted Christopher and his band with a wide mixture of songs ranging from the patriotic to the down right funny. Then of course Albannach , what can you say about Albannach, well if Tomatin was fast asleep, the pipes and drums of the band woke her up. As you will see by the video pipes and drums with a difference, they light the fires of patriotism within anyone.
There was only one down side to the event and that was that the venue was probably too small. I only hope we can over come this for next year and we can all join together to put it on again.
On behalf of Crann Tara I would like to thank the Saints and Sinners MCC,
Siol Nan Gaidheal and Tomatin for allowing us to have the honour of being in your company and really hope this event can continue.
By Jim Singer