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Awesome Highland games filmed in the 1960s

This vintage home movie is a standard 8 film of an awesome highland games event which was filmed somewhere in Scotland in the 1960s.

Although there is no indication on the film reel of the date or location of the event being filmed, we can be pretty sure that the location is somewhere in the highlands of Scotland. The date is a bit less certain, but it’s most likely to be in the 1960s.

The film stock used was Kodachrome which was the most popular type of 8mm film used by vintage home movie makers. This has lead to generally good quality images, although there are some scenes where a small amount of damage has occurred to the film affecting the right hand side of the picture.

The games would normally take place in the summer months but the crowds shown in the film have coats on, so I would assume this was shot in the early summer, rather than later on in August or September.

When I first watched the film, I wondered if it could be a school event; the opening sequence is of school age children carrying out highland dancing on a small platform. As the film develops however it is obvious that there are also traditional highland games events in which adults are taking part. I also saw that there are formal judging panels1 so that also ruled out a school event in my eyes.

There is a large crowd observing the games, so it was obviously a popular event and from a little research I carried out on google it seems that this is still the case today with games taking place all over Scotland on many weekends in the summer. I wonder what differences an observer of a modern set of games would notice when compared to this film?

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If you see anything in the film which you recognise, or you think gives clues to the location or date, please let me know in the comments below. Also, please share this post with your friends if you think they may be able to help locate a scene in this film.

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A software developer by profession and an amateur photographer by hobby I've been interested in all things photographic since I was a teenager some 40 years ago. Many of my interests centre around vintage film photography and cinematography.

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