Inverness - Culture and Sports

Culture and Sports

Inverness is an important centre for bagpipe players and lovers, since every September the city hosts the Northern Meeting. The Inverness cape, a garment worn in the rain by pipers the world over, is not necessarily made in Inverness.

Another major event in calendar is the annual City of Inverness Highland Games. The event can trace its roots back to one of the first Highland Games staged in the modern era; the True Highland Games which was staged in 1822 by members of the Northern Meeting Society. In 1864 the Northern Meeting Society built the world's first Highland Games stadium, the Northern Meeting Park. The last Northern Meeting Highland Games was staged in 1938 and following the second world war, responsibility for the organisation of the annual event passed to the Town Council who moved the event to Bught Park in 1948. In 2006 Inverness hosted Scotland's biggest ever Highland Games over two days in July, featuring the Masters' World Championships, the showcase event for heavies aged over 40 years. 2006 was the first year that the Masters' World Championships had been held outside the United States, and it attracted many top heavies from around the world to the Inverness area. The Masters World Championships returned in 2009 when it was staged as part of the Homecoming celebrations. In 2010, the City of Inverness Highland Games returned to Northern Meeting Park where it remains to this day.

The main theatre in Inverness is called Eden Court Theatre. Actress Karen Gillan is the ambassador for Theatre Art Education.

The current music scene within Inverness generally leans towards an emo/punk/hardcore style, but there are also bands who show features of different genres such as rock, metal, pop, classical, grunge, industrial and traditional Scottish music.

Inverness is home to two summer music festivals, Rockness and the Tartan Heart Festival, that bring a variety of different music to the town.

The city is home to three football clubs. Inverness Caledonian Thistle F.C. was formed in 1994 from the merger of two Highland League clubs, Caledonian F.C. and Inverness Thistle. "Caley Thistle" of the Scottish Premier League plays at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium. The town's second football club, Clachnacuddin F.C., plays in the Highland League. Inverness Citadel F.C. was another popular side which became defunct, but had its name revived. The third football side is Inverness City F.C. who play in the North Region Juniors and were formed in 2006.

Highland RFC is the local rugby union club that competes regularly in the Caledonia Regional League Division One.

Highland HC is the local hockey team with both Mens & Ladies 1st teams in Scottish National Division 2. The Mens 1st team successfully gained promotion from Scottish National Division 3 in 2011.

Inverness Blitz is a charity that promotes the development of American football in Inverness and the surrounding area. Bught Park, located in the centre of Inverness is the finishing point of the annual Loch Ness Marathon and home of Inverness Shinty Club.

In 2011, Inverness hosted professional golf with the Scottish Open on the European Tour, played at Castle Stuart the week before The Open Championship.

Cricket is also played in Inverness, with both Highland CC and Northern Counties playing in the North of Scotland Cricket Association League and 7 welfare league teams playing midweek cricket at Fraser Park. Both teams have been very successful over the years.

Stock car racing was staged in Inverness circa 1973.

In 2007, the city hosted Highland 2007, a celebration of the culture of the Highlands, and will also host the World Highland Games Heavy Championships (21 & 22 July) and European Pipe Band Championships (28 July). 2008 saw the first Hi-Ex (Highlands International Comics Expo), held at the Eden Court Theatre.

Inverness is the location of Macbeth's castle in Shakespeare's play.

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