Mull Mod hopes dashed

Tarbert folk group Na Smearaich took time out to practice on Tobermory seafront during the 2019 Mull Mod. From left is Daria Deravyankin, Sarah Kirk and Aimee Burnett.

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The heartbreaking decision to cancel this year’s Mull Mod has devastated organisers.

The event, which committee members had hoped would be the first ‘in-person’ mod since the pandemic, had to be called off just days before it was due to happen last weekend.

A sudden increase in virus cases on the island, particularly in children, was to blame.

Mod chairperson Janet MacDonald told The Oban Times before the weekend: ‘I’d just like to to say how devastated we, the committee, all are that we’ve had to cancel at this late stage.

‘We had hoped to be the first in-person mod since the pandemic began.

‘I’d like to thank the committee for the preparatory work they have done, and which is now wasted, as it can’t be carried forward.

‘Many thanks to our adjudicators, helpers, and all teachers and parents who have spent many hours preparing children and adults for the competitions, which will not now take place.

‘We are especially sad that we can’t arrange for online competitions at this late stage, as there isn’t enough time.

‘Mull Mod is normally one of the biggest, if not the biggest local Mod, on the circuit, and we can’t wait until next year when it will hopefully be back even bigger than usual.’

Last week Mod secretary Donna Dugdale had made the announcement on Facebook apologising for such short notice.

‘There has been a sudden increase in the number of cases in Mull, particularly in children, and we have to think of the safety and well-being of all competitors, adjudicators and volunteer helpers, as well as members of the public who may have attended.

‘I know you will be as disappointed as we are, especially when some of you would have been travelling here in only a couple of days, and because we were all so looking forward to actually having a face-to-face mod.

‘I am just heartbroken to have to make this announcement and I know that the children will also be so disappointed.

‘We hope that you will all be able to come next year, for a bigger and better mod than ever. Thank you for your on-going support,’ she wrote.