Saturday the 26th of July 2008, a warm sunny day in Killiecrankie - Scotland. More than 80 people made an effort to join in for the annual Killiecrankie walk, remembering all those killed on both sides during the battle that took place here 319 years ago. One person was remembered in particular, John Grahame of Claverhouse ? much later known as Bonnie Dundie ? who was killed in his moment of glory on the 27th of July 1689. He fell during the early stages of the engagement between his Highland army and the superior forces of the usurper? Victory and death? It was the very first Jacobite battle.
At 12.00 noon Kenny Borthwick opened the day in the Old Blair car park, giving a brief insight into the war council that was held the night before the actual battle in the banquet room of Blair Castle. Then the present ?army? was led up the gruelling hill by the standards of Grahame and King James. For once the Young Pretenders outdid the Old Pretender and arrived (very slightly) ahead at the Montrose Stone near the summit. Here Alec Calderhead told the story of another famous time in history, when the Great Montrose raised the Royalist standard on a knoll on the hill of Lude.
Some refreshing water gave new energy to continue the walk through the picturesque landscape towards the battlefield. It is a moving moment to appear on the ridge above the field, casting your thoughts back in time to 1689. Kenny gave a short historical speech about the positioning of the armies on the field that day, and thistles - representing the fallen soldiers - were handed out for people to scatter them onto ?the field of blood? with whatever thoughts they had at the time. But before this moment of lucidity, all the groups including Crann Tara, Siol Nan Gaidheal, Na Fir Delieas, Clann Gaidhealach to name a few, created a spectacular sight when they charged onto the field of battle.
At the Cairn on the battlefield, David R. Ross and Andrew Murray Scott spoke about what it meant for Scotland back in those days and today, and about the cause that day and what it meant in Jacobite terms respectively. A humble Nick Brand of Siol Nan Gaidheal, at being given the honour, laid the wreath of remembrance on behalf of Crann Tara to those who gave their lives. Vanessa Livingston also laid her wreath on behalf of Urrard House. Prayers were said by Rab Cairney, followed by a musket salute and a minute of silence.
People were then driven back to Old Blair car park, to line up for the last part of the commemoration, the service of remembrance at the final resting place of John Grahame of Claverhouse ? St. Brides Kirk within the grounds of Blair Castle.
Here Kenny read a moving tribute to his hero Dundie, after which wreaths were laid at John Grahame?s tomb. Crann Tara?s wreath was laid by Vanessa Livingston of Urrard, followed by the tributes of Siol Nan Gaidheal, Na Fir Delieas and Alison Faulkner. Rab again did a flawless prayer before Kenny and Bruce Ogilvie fired their musket and pistol salute respectively. As happened regularly during battles in those days, the pistol failed to fire. However, in a lighthearted manner Bruce finally got his wish by firing the musket.
A minute of silence allowed for the last tribute of respect, and Kenny closed the event by thanking everyone present for their time and effort on the day on behalf of Dundie, and wished them a safe journey home.
Date of next years commemoration 25th of July 2009

By Topsy &� Wee Dundie

Iain getting ready for the march
Preperations are in full swing
Kenny does a great job organising this event
Chocolate faced wee Jacobite
John has a smile for the camera
Big Brian rallies the troops
There was a fantastic turn out

Clann Gaidhealach were in attendance

Jim leads the march with the pipes
Rab has the Crann Tara flag
Siol flags on display
Bringing up up the rear
On the Trail of Jim Ingram
The young ones reached the summit first
Happy faces on a hot day
What's the joke Shona
Dave & Rab striding out
Alex gives a wee speech at the Graham Monument
Round the Graham Monument
Fantastic turnout this year
Walking across the top
Flags in abundance
Kenny leads the troops
Proud to be a Scot
Quite a sight
Colour and flags
Preparing for the speeches at the battlefield
The onlookers at the battlefield
Nick lays the Crann Tara wreath
Kenny fires his muskat
John proudly holds his flag
More of the crowd
Getting organised in the Kirk
David Ross looks on at the followers
Alec lays a wreath
The firing squad
The muskat fired but big Bruce was firing blanks !
The wreaths in honour of Bonnie Dundie

A special thanks to Jim Wilson & Cameron Graham for sending us some photos for this page.

The Courier Taking you to the heart of Tayside & Fife
Walk marks Killiecrankie anniversary

The walkers on the road to Killiecrankie.

ONE OF the bloodiest episodes in Scotland?s history was commemorated in highland Perthshire at the weekend.

Clad in period Jacobite dress, participants in the annual Killiecrankie Memorial Walk traced the route taken by the Jacobite forces on their way to battle in 1689.

Organised by the Crann Tara Group, the event recalled how Bonnie Dundee, John Grahame of Claverhouse, led his army against the government troops led by General Hugh MacKay of Scourie.

The two armies faced each other for nearly two hours before Bonnie Dundee gave the order to charge. Just 15 minutes later the battle was over.

The battle caused the deaths of more than 500 Jacobites?including Grahame himself?with the Redcoats suffering casualties estimated at up to 1700.

Saturday?s event marked the 319th anniversary of the Killiecrankie conflict and was as poignant as ever.

Organiser Kenny Borthwick said, ?Bonnie Dundee was robbed of his life in his moment of glory as the Williamite army of between 3500 and 4000 was routed by his 2000 Highlanders.?

Crann Tara walked the route taken from Blair Castle to the battlefield, where a wreath was laid at the monument within the grounds of Urrad house to the fallen of both sides.

After that participants returned to St Bride?s Kirk within the grounds of Blair Castle to lay a wreath at the tomb of John Grahame.

Historical references were made throughout the walk with speeches, a musket salute and a piper?s lament at the burial sites.

When the event was first staged 12 years ago, there were only five people present, but that number has now grown to nearer 75.

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Special thanks
On behalf of

For providing excellent entertainment in the village hall
organised by themselves. It is the first time I have heard the new line up of the band of
Gibby McNaught and Andrew Gordon
and must say it was a great performance showing true professionalism in front of lively, but small audience.

Deeside Water Co. Ltd
For providing Crann Tara with a couple of cases of bottled water
for the battlefield walk.

last, but not least
Venessa &Kenny Livingston
For their very kind and generous hospitality

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� Crann Tara 2006