Community News

The 2017 Highland Gathering. Image: Lynne Mowbray.

Highland Gathering organisers tasked with ensuring a COVID safe event this coming Easter

The 116th Maclean Highland Gathering will go ahead over the Easter weekend April 2 – 3 this year. The event was cancelled last year because of Covid health restrictions that were in place at that time.

Maclean is always on show over Easter weekends, when the town welcomes thousands of visitors who come annually to see and participate in the spirit of the Highland gathering. The committee of the Lower Clarence Scottish Association is currently working with the NSW health authorities, police and council to formulate how best the event can go ahead under strict Covid health regulations.

The committee is committed to bringing back the event this year and may have to move some of the usual activities to the Maclean showground. This means that the popular Saturday morning street March bands on parade, may not take place this year. 

Recording large crowd records at so many points of entry into the Maclean CBD centre will prove difficult to implement for the committee. The Covid laws are forever changing and it is difficult to forecast what Covid laws will be in place by next Easter.

Within early planning, the organising committee is using the usual agenda of events to provide the best outcome for Maclean. The final decision on how best to administrate this popular Maclean event will not be known until some weeks before Easter. The organising committee is very much aware that it has to deal with many aspects of difficulty this year, like daylight saving, the possibility of border closures and strict rules to hold a large event under Covid laws.

The spirit of the Highland gathering is very much alive in Maclean and despite Covid restrictions the games will go ahead this Easter.  

Bob MacPherson