Rockfield celebrates all things shinty

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Two very different exhibitions at The Rockfield Centre will tell the story of shinty at a special event next week.

The three-day extravaganza over the Macaulay Cup weekend, August 15 to August 18, will celebrate, commemorate and converse about all things shinty and sport-related, says shinty expert Hugh Dan MacLennan.

The exhibitions will look at the sport from a historic and an artistic perspective and at the launch on Thursday August 15 at 7pm,
Hugh Dan will be giving a talk about how they came about and why
they are important to the sport.

He will also talk about the Shinty Memories project, working to tackle the issues of loneliness and dementia by encouraging people to meet and share shinty photographs and artefacts of yesteryear. Admission to the opening talk is on a first come, first seated basis.

The exhibition Shinty: The Sacrifice 1914-1918 looks at how communities in the Highlands and Islands made an extraordinary sacrifice in the Great War. The casualties per head of population were more than double the average for Britain. The war memorials of Skye and Lochalsh carry the names of almost 500 men who paid the ultimate price.

‘The fittest and ablest men, largely, of their generation, including the best
sportsmen and, in shinty terms, some of the best ever players, were lost to future generations in the carnage and misery of the trenches and at sea,’ says Hugh Dan.

Communities were decimated. ‘There are extraordinary tales to tell and it’s singularly appropriate that shinty players and the shinty community’s contribution to the Great War be understood and marked,’ he added.

That exhibition will run from Friday August 16 to Sunday August 18, 10am to 4pm. Admission is free.

The second exhibition, Throw-Up 2018, runs at the same time and features  four artists who were commissioned by the Highland Print Studio in 2017 to create work inspired by shinty, one of Scotland’s oldest sports.

Artists Deirdre Nelson, Roddy Buchanan, John McNaught and Tom Smith worked with chosen shinty clubs during the 2017-2018 season resulting in photography, linocut, screen printing, photogravure and knitting.

On the eve of the Macaulay Cup final, Friday August 16 at 7.30pm, Hugh Dan MacLennan will be joined by some well-known local sporting figures. Ian MacPhee, Roddy McCuish and other guests will be having a lively conversation about sport in general. Tickets are £5 at the door.