Highlands & Islands

Thousands arrive for Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival

Image caption The Hutchison brothers of Scottish band Frightened Rabbit said Belladrum was among their favourite events

Thousands of people are attending the Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival near Beauly.

Held in the grounds of a Highland estate, the event near Inverness sold out five months before it was to take place.

The cancellation of this year's RockNess also left it as the biggest music event in the Highlands,

Friday's headliners included Scots band Frightened Rabbit and Sir Tom Jones.

Belladrum, which is being held for the 11th year, prides itself in being a family event and hundreds of children were among the revellers.

The day's festivities started in warm, still weather, but there were heavy rain showers by teatime.

Regular act

Brothers Scott and Grant Hutchison of Scottish band Frightened Rabbit said Belladrum was among their favourite events.

The band has been a festival regular for several years.

Grant said: "The first time we were here was great. I remember it was the first really good festival show we had played to. The crowd was singing our songs back to us."

The brothers from Selkirk base themselves in Glasgow with the rest of the band.

However, the band has in the past hired a house near Kingussie - a village down the A9 from Inverness - to write material.

Scott said: "It was good to be somewhere remote, away from distractions and only making the occasional visit to the local pub."

Double decker

The brothers themselves are no strangers to the Highlands as their parents have links to Wick and the family would make visits to Caithness.

Sitting at the front of the top deck in Belladrum's converted double decker bus, the duo gave some final thoughts on the festival.

Grant said: "It has a good mixture of local, national and international music. Walking around the site it feels very familiar, in a good way."

Scott added: "It is a festival that we are able to have wander around and soak up the atmosphere."

The festival finishes on Saturday night.

Belladrum will be shown live on BBC Alba at 21:00 on Friday and Saturday.

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