Community Events – The Carnival

In 1980 a group of residents organised a fund raising event with the purpose of answering an appeal for assistance for the local Church.

The success of that venture was such that it was decided to form Strachur District Amenitites Assoc. with the objective of providing grants to local Clubs and Organisations as well as assistance with equipment for the Doctor’s Surgery.

1982 was the first Carnival. Held in the beginning in the old Shinty field in front of Strachur House, one year at Dunoon Stadium and then moved to Balliemeanoch.

The Carnival comprised of many varied Arena events such as Shinty, a main event as well as Tug of War, Pipe Band display, Terrier Race and One Man and his Dog -Fraser McGlinn and Bill Black providing music. On one occasion a fancy dress parade with Dougal from ‘Take The High Road’ was a popular judge. There was a different main event each year. Side shows of Catering, Highland Dancing competition, Forestry exhibits, sheep show, sheep shearing display, old engines on show, a fun fair, home baking, butter, cheese, plants, arts and crafts, knitwear and other goods. A Bar tent, Tea tent and ice cream were also available as well as helicopter trips from the adjacent field. The Bank of Scotland Services also was provided.

Publicity for the Carnival continued to improved with coverage through the Cowal Tourist Board Brochure and an advert also in Country Walking Magazine.

Surplus funds from other events which took place throughout the year (Whist Drives and a Burns Celebration) were channelled into a Capital Fund from which suitable purchases were made to up-grade the event. While the U.S. Navy was in the area, the Association was indebted to them for their encouraging presence and for the provision of various items of equipment.

The last couple of years of The Carnival saw a change, It was difficult getting the manpower needed, plus a major problem of rain instead of sunshine spoiled the event, and regrettable for all, this was the end of The Carnival. 1999 being the last year.

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CE1-033 1982 Laurie Robertson with the children’s fancy dress.
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CE1-036 Winners of Carnival Shinty
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CE1-030 Dunoon Grammar School Pipe Band

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