This year was due to be the 60th year of Peterhead Scottish Week, but with some restrictions still in place due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2021 event is going to be mixture of online and live events.
And as organisers want to ensure the milestone anniversary is celebrated in style, the 60th celebrations will now take place in July 2022 – therefore falling on the actual 60th anniversary of when Peterhead first hosted its popular gala week.
So, it’s the 59½ Peterhead Scottish Week which will get underway this Saturday, July 17.
Missing from the 2021 Scottish Week, though, will be the Buchan Queen.
While last year’s virtual Scottish Week did feature the traditional queen – Natasha Clueit, who was also queen in 2018, was crowned at a ceremony at the Lido with no audience, but watched by around 8000 viewers online – it was felt the queen and her princesses were deprived of the full experience.
Earlier this year, when there was even greater uncertainty over the virus, the Scottish Week committee decided the Buchan Queen event should not go ahead.
It’s the first time Scottish Week will go ahead without its queen.
However, there’s so much more to look forward to this year – not least the return of the Red Arrows on Wednesday, July 21.
This will be the eighth time the Royal Air Force aerobatic team will take to the sky above Peterhead Bay, the last time being in 2018.
The team's first appearance was back in 1994, and they flew over the town in 2011 for the 50th anniversary of Scottish Week. They returned the following year too, flying over Peterhead before heading to London the following night for the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games.
Flying their distinctive Hawk fast-jets, the Red Arrows team will demonstrate the excellence and capabilities of the Royal Air Force, and the service’s skilled and talented people.
Scottish Week chairperson Karen Day said: “The Scottish Week committee have worked hard to secure the display and are delighted to welcoming the Red Arrows team back.
"It’s great news and it will be something wonderful to look forward to – let’s be honest it’s been a pretty dull 17 months!”
Commentary of the Red Arrows display will be broadcast on Waves Radio, while onlookers must maintain social distancing in line with Covid-19 guidelines. A section of South Road from Links Terrace junction to the junction at Skerry Drive will be closed to traffic. A notice of closure will also be in place for the Lido Car Park as a safety precaution for pedestrians.
The return of the Red Arrows in due in no small part to sponsors Peterhead Port Authority, ASCO and Maritime Developments Limited, with Karen acknowledging it wouldn’t have been possible to put on the event without their support.
Simon Brebner, chief executive of Peterhead Port Authority, said: “Peterhead Port Authority is delighted to continue its sponsorship of the Peterhead Scottish Week and contribute to the overall fun, enjoyment and success of the event, the highlight of which will no doubt be the aerobatic display of the Red Arrows.”
Michael Ramsay, ASCO general manager Northern UK, added: “ASCO is delighted to be able to support the Peterhead community by contributing to the town’s Scottish Week.
“We are particularly pleased to be joining with our colleagues across Peterhead Port Authority, as co-sponsor of the Red Arrow’s display. It is sure to be one of the week’s highlights and we can’t wait to see them in action.”
There are many other highlights throughout the week for people of all ages to enjoy.
The traditional ‘Window Spotting Competition’ runs from Saturday, July 17, to Sunday, July 25, with the particpating shops displaying lucky numbers being revealed on the Scottish Week Facebook page on the first day.
Peterhead Producers’ Market will be at Drummers Corner on the opening day.
The Masson Glennie Picnic in the Park is back on Sunday, July 18, at Eden Park, which will feature Connie’s Fair, lots and games and inflatables to add to the fun.
This year there’s a big push to make the Scottish Week carnival parade the biggest and best ever.
After all the trials and tribulations of the last 18 months or so, wouldn’t it be wonderful for the whole town to come together for this colourful spectacle on Saturday, July 24?
The parade will feature an eclectic mix of floats, walkers and bands, and is bound to attract a big crowd.
On the same day, the car show will be taking place at Peterhead Academy bus park, featuring a range of vintage, suped-up, turbo charged and retro vehicles. Car exhibitors have also been invited to take part in the carnival parade.
The are a number of online events too – with one of the highlights likely to be the online gig on Friday, July 23, featuring local bands and singers.
• Full details of all Peterhead Scottish Week events are included in the programme which is on sale at the following: West End Butchers, Albert Hotel, Homestyle, Bon Bon, WH Smith, Premier, Peterhead Motors, Buchanhaven Pharmacy and Travel Clinic, McColls, Neish and The Gift Co – Berryden.