The first official meeting of the Central Coast Scots was a great success, bringing together people from different decades to share their importance of maintaining their culture and tradition.
The meeting, held on Saturday, June 20 discussed the importance of enhancing cultural aspects of the Central Coast community. Some present held cultural connections back to the homeland, whilst others shared interests in their customs and traditions.
Their main shared desire was to keep Scottish traditions alive in the Central Coast community. The meeting was attended by a number of key local Scottish enthusiasts including Gosford mayor Cr Lawrie McKinna, Cr Gabby Bowles, Central Coast’s Scottish celebrant Mr David Courtney and the recently appointed interim president Mr Douglas McFarland.
Mr McFarland is owner of McFarland’s Down Under the Kilt, chairman of Central Coast Highland Dancing Inc and president of the recently reformed City of Gosford Pipe Band. “It is clear from the success of our social media campaign that celebrating the links between Scotland and Australia is important to our local community,” Mr McFarland said.
“Whether it be grouping together to enjoy a Rangers/ Celtic Match, putting on the blue and white to see Andy Murray take out a grand slam, having a nip or two of an aged malt whisky at a local establishment, or pulling out the pipes and dancing a highland fling, there are many people on the Central Coast proud of the nation they came from and celebrating the nation they live and love,” he said.
Cr Bowles said she actually wasn’t sure whether or not she had any Scottish ancestry but strongly believed in the importance of bringing back culture to the Central Coast. “It gives people a sense of belonging, Australia is such a young nation and there is not as many traditions,” she said.
“It is nice for people to learn where their heritage comes from and the traditions and customs that comes with that, it is what keeps culture alive,” she said.
Mr Courtney said he is thrilled to be part of the new association in the sharing and spreading of Scottish cultural beliefs, customs and traditions. “With almost 10 per cent of Aussies having Scottish heritage, it’s only natural that they should wish to find out more about their ancestry, and a good starting point would be our newly formed association,” he said.
Marriage has become an institution where people look back to their cultural roots to add symbolic touches. Central Coast Scots has set up a Facebook page or you can contact Mr McFarland via Down Under the Kilt.
23 June 2015 Joshua Luca,
Dosh Public Relations