Moffat sheep race

The weird and wonderful Scottish traditions you might not know

Scotland has a fascinating and rich history, with many celebrations and traditions which are seeped in myth and legend.

From haggis hurling and first footing to sheep racing and coal carrying, we take a look at the history behind some weird and wonderful Scottish traditions that you might not know about.

Haggis hurling has gained massive popularity over the past few decades. It began in 1977 when Irishman Robin Dunseath placed an advert in a national newspaper inviting entrants to The World Haggis Hurling Competition.

1. Haggis hurling

Haggis hurling has gained massive popularity over the past few decades. It began in 1977 when Irishman Robin Dunseath placed an advert in a national newspaper inviting entrants to The World Haggis Hurling Competition.
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The Scottish Coal Race which has been going since 1994 - is run over a kilometre, uphill through the Fife village of Kelty, from the smiddy to the school, with women hefting 25 kilo bags and men double that.

2. Coal carrying

The Scottish Coal Race which has been going since 1994 - is run over a kilometre, uphill through the Fife village of Kelty, from the smiddy to the school, with women hefting 25 kilo bags and men double that.
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The Burning of the Clavie involves a hooped barrel, the Clavie, which is filled with old bits of tar and wood. 10 men take turns to carry the burning Clavie round the streets, stopping off to present bits of embers to houses.

3. Burning the clavie

The Burning of the Clavie involves a hooped barrel, the Clavie, which is filled with old bits of tar and wood. 10 men take turns to carry the burning Clavie round the streets, stopping off to present bits of embers to houses.
Geograph.org.uk/Anne Burgess https://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/314168
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A custom undertaken prior to the wedding was feet-washing.Friends of the bride would wash her feet in a symbolic act of cleansing. The groom's feet were covered in soot and feathers.

4. Soot foot and blackening

A custom undertaken prior to the wedding was feet-washing.Friends of the bride would wash her feet in a symbolic act of cleansing. The groom's feet were covered in soot and feathers.
Margaret Montgomery and David Walters at their feet washing in 1956. The practise later became known as blackening. The couple married in Aberdeen. PIC: Courtesy of family collection.
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