Crowds flock to Leith Festival Gala Day

Loli Holyer, Jayne Forbes, Susan Tonner, Wendy Holyer, . Picture: Ian Georgeson
Loli Holyer, Jayne Forbes, Susan Tonner, Wendy Holyer, . Picture: Ian Georgeson
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CROWDS 8000-strong were bathed in warm sunshine at Saturday’s Leith Festival Gala Day boasting a falconry display, 120 stalls and the traditional pagent procession.

Organisers said the festival on Leith Links, founded in 1917, was well attended and the parade through the Capital’s port attracted around 400 entrants.

Entertainment included Ghanaian drummers, pipes and drums and a walking boat,

Director Mary Moriarty said it was a “wonderful” event helped by the soaring temperatures that saw the mercury rise to a balmy 20 degrees – warmer than Los Angeles.

“The festival is growing back to full strength,” she said.

“The falconry exhibition something of a wow factor and was a big draw.

“We had lots of stalls and all in all it was a brilliant festival.”

In total there were 53 events taking place across 37 venues as part of the historic festival week which closes on Sunday, June 16.

Meanwhile across in Midlothian, scores of former Gala kings and queens returned to hold court at the centenary of the Newtongrange Gala Day.

Gala chairman John Turnbull issued a call for former courtiers to turn out and celebrate the landmark anniversary. Around 104 festival royals out of 144 former kings and queens were contacted.

Following a procession through the village, the crowning ceremony for this year’s court was held at Newtongrange Park.

Entertainment included massed bands, zumba dancers, quad bikes, pony rides, a rodeo bull, assault course and a toddler adventure trail among other activities.