Shinty appeals to a new generation on Arran

Shinty tutor Bobby Crowe with the team of Arran shinty players.

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Shinty is not a game usually associated with Arran. But all that changed last week when, for the first time, the traditional Gaelic sport was added to the curriculum of the Fèis Arainn festival.

The sport of shinty, with its historical roots dating back to the fifth century and well-known throughout Scotland since at least the 17th century, has shown it is still as relevant with youngsters today.

Led by tutor Bobby Crowe, the introduction to shinty class was a popular choice with many of the children who donned the characteristic protective headgear and shinty sticks.

Although widespread throughout Scotland, and even considered by some as Scotland’s national sport – widely accepted to be golf – the ancient game has never really gained popularity on Arran.

In a short demonstration held at Arran High School, Fèis Arainn pupils showed just how physical and fast-paced the game can be and why it was so popular with the young players who practised it over four days last week.