A new festival of culture and heritage is being launched in the Cairngorms National Park next month.
The Badenoch Festival is a new homegrown programme of events launching this autumn by the Badenoch Great Place Project (BGPP), showcasing the very best that local heritage has to offer in the historic region.
Over 60 events will be on offer at venues and attractions across Badenoch with traditional music, shinty, living history, walks, cycling, talks and storytelling for visitors to experience.
The rich suite of cultural events celebrates Badenoch’s unique connections to landscape, highland community and the deep roots of storytelling in the National Park.
Many of the events have been organised with the help of local people in the communities of Dalwhinnie, Kincraig, Kingussie, Laggan and Newtonmore.
Karen Derrick, chief officer at Voluntary Action in Badenoch and Strathspey (VABS), said: “The majority of our events are delivered by the passion of local people and through lots of hard work by the members of local group Badenoch Heritage, the Badenoch Festival Working Group and our dedicated Badenoch Ambassador volunteers.”
The festival is coordinated by the Badenoch Great Place Project, a community and tourism initiative funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, led by Cairngorms National Park Authority.
It is being delivered in partnership with VABS with six other organisations, including the Highland Folk Museum and Highland Wild Life Park. Since starting in 2018, the BGPP has been looking at Badenoch’s rich cultural heritage and the potential to develop the area as a visitor destination in the Cairngorms National Park, by studying the wealth of historic sites and folklore in the area.
This has led to the development of a proposed destination brand, Badenoch: The Storylands.
Over the coming months and during the festival, the Badenoch Great Place team will be discussing the potential of these ideas with local businesses and Badenoch’s communities, through a series of drop-in events and guided tours.
The brand has also inspired the theme of the new festival, exploring the idea of a living landscape of storytelling, where connections between natural heritage, language, hidden places, traditional sports and the memories of local people make Badenoch a very special place to visit.
There will be opportunities for visitors to learn about the local area from volunteer Badenoch Ambassadors as well as members of the local community, who will be manning drop-in storytelling venues throughout the festival.
The festival kicks-off with a launch event in Kingussie on September 6 and runs until September 22.