The average summer in Britain brings barbeques, beer gardens and trips abroad to try and find the sun that other nations tells us exist but remains ever elusive, particularly in Scotland.
However, for at least one day every year, towns and villages across the country take bloom, become a carnival of colour, noise and excitement as gala days bring a sense of togetherness that is all too often missing in today’s society.
Bathgate – the buckle of Scotland’s central belt – is no different.
Sadly last year’s parade succumbed to the Scottish summer and was a complete wash out but whilst Mother Nature may have deprived the town of its day last year, she made sure that this year’s would be celebrated in all its glory.
Indeed such was the heat, I was concerned with all the men taking advantage of the “taps aff” weather that there was a potential sun stroke pandemic about to hit. I am sure those that took part in the parades and marching bands would have appreciated a breeze from all the wind they were producing.
The town received a blow when it was announced that the annual British Pipe Band Championships was leaving Bathgate to be hosted in Paisley for the next three years. Despite this, the bagpipes were still playing at Gala Day and once again Bathgate put on a best of British show, with a Scottish twist.
Here’s to next year.