Scottish Clan Event Fund opens for new applications

More clans than ever before are set to benefit as EventScotland opens the latest round of the Scottish Clan Event Fund today (Tuesday 30 May).

Designed to support the growth of clan events and expand the visitor experience across Scotland, the Scottish Clan Event Fund provides grants of between £1,000 and £5,000 for events and activities taking place outside of Edinburgh and Glasgow to clans, clan societies and recognised families.

The latest round of funding has also been extended to include organisations acting on behalf of a clan or clan society. The addition of these organisations, such as community or youth groups, is designed to open the fund up within local communities to promote and celebrate Scotland’s clan histories and encourage visitors to connect with their ancestral roots.

Activities and events eligible for funding include clan and recognised family gatherings, clan games, battle and historical re-enactments, cultural and/or music events, guided walks and tours, historical or ghost tours, ceilidhs and festivals. Funding can also be used to plan events and activities outside the traditional summer period, with St Andrew’s Day, Hogmanay and Burns Night providing ideal opportunities.

Eligible events and activities applying for this round of funding must take place between 1 Jan 2018 and 31 Dec 2019. Organisers should also consider where there may be opportunities across planned activity to celebrate Scotland’s 2018 Year of Young People 2018.

Clan tourism is worth £101m to the Scottish economy. Each year, hundreds of thousands of visitors from across the globe choose to visit Scotland to explore their ancestry by visiting the homelands of their ancestors. In recognition of the importance of this, the Scottish Government launched the Scottish Clan Event Fund in 2014 and since its inception it has invested more than £128,000 to support 41 events.

In the last round a record 16 events received support, including seven who received funding through the Scottish Clan Event Fund: Splash of Tartan. This was an additional round opened to celebrate Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology and to support of a programme of clan events taking place across Scotland this August to complement the clans’ engagement with the ‘Splash of Tartan’ programme at The 2017 Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop said: “Our clans play an important role in attracting visitors to Scotland, no more so in 2017, the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.  

“As part of the celebrations of this year, the clans are playing a major part in this year’s Splash of Tartan tattoo. To benefit the clan members taking part in the tattoo, Scottish Ministers agreed to extend the clan fund to support events around their appearance. Seven clans have been successful with almost £10,000 awarded.

“The Clan Event Fund itself has been successful – 26 clans have received funding towards over 40 events in its first four years – which VisitScotland calculates as a £590,000 direct economic impact.

“The latest round of the £70,000 fund is now open for applications from clans and associated bodies. It’s not just for traditional gatherings, but also events embedded in local communities, throughout the year, including during our Winter Festivals.”

Paul Bush OBE, Director of Events, said:
 “The Scottish Clan Event Fund has played an important role in expanding the experiences on offer for visitors looking to explore their ancestry and connect with the heritage of Scotland.

“With the fund now open to a wider range of organisations, more clans than ever before will be able to benefit and we are excited to see the array of events it will be able to support; whether it’s a re-enactments, a ceilidh, or a celebration of one of the Winter Festivals. Scotland is the perfect stage for events and the Scottish Clan Event Fund is a great opportunity to showcase even more of what we have to offer, including in more rural parts of the country.”

Jamie Macnab of Macnab, of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs, said: “We are grateful for the Cabinet Secretary and VisitScotland, particularly EventScotland, for their ongoing support of the clans. The Scottish Clan Fund has been amazing in supporting events all over the country, especially in the remoter parts of Scotland, and we are delighted it is being continued into 2018/2019. Clans are looking to engage with local communities as well as international visitors in order have greater relevance in modern day Scotland and the updated criteria makes that easier by allowing community groups as well as clans to benefit from the fund.

“We look forward to seeing an array of new events which will attract locals and visitors alike. The images of clans’ folk wearing their tartan in Scotland’s most picturesque locations will be shared around the world and will help boost the profile of our wonderful country.”

The Scottish Clan Event Fund is administered by EventScotland. Applications to the fund are open until 5pm, Friday 29 September 2017. To find out more, visit

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