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Kingussie's pictorial history sells out – in a week!

By Tom Ramage

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Shinty fans have swept up every copy of "The Boys of the Dell", Kingussie Camanachd Club's updated pictorial history released only a week ago.

"We'll be doing a reprint, of course," said compiler John Robertson, the club's historian, "but we're now in the process of estimating just how many we'll have to print.

John Robertson's pictorial history has sold out
John Robertson's pictorial history has sold out

"We're really delighted with the response we've had."

The success of the exercise has echoed the frustration felt in 2020, a year which should have been sensational for the Dell, upgraded superbly and chosen as this year's Camanachd Final venue, with full TV coverage lined up to highlight what was intended to be a whole week – if not more – of community events at both ends of Badenoch.

Old rivals Newtonmore were aiming to be a major part of the celebrations – and not just as the other end of the field!

Various clubs and organisations had signed up to play a part in a genuine festival of shinty.

That was before the Covid pandemic and the lockdowns which even this week have gone on to claim today's planned fun shooting of Freddie Flintoff and Jamie Redknapp's first game of shinty as part of their 'In a League of their Own' game show.

While some of the team have been seen in the strath, apparently taking a break from filming other activities in the Highlands, the Dell has had to remain silent after the cancellation of filming. The stars of the Sky show were to have been coached by Kingussie legend Ronald Ross.

Instead, hopes are that the show will return to Badenoch next year.

So the response to the publication of the updated club history has been deeply satisfying for the Badenoch capital.

Hot stuff!
Hot stuff!

As the Strathy explained last week, the second volume of photographs, completing the record from 1890 to 2020, was sparked by the discovery of pictures previously unseen here, notably the 1899 Kingussie Camanachd Final team.

Some 100 pages have been added to the book since the 2014 version and the two separate volumes went on sale last week for a £20 the pair.

"The book is essentially a photograph album which records who has played for the club better than any text could," explained Mr Robertson.

"Although the future of the club is more important than the past, it can be enjoyable to look back at the history of a sports club.

"The commitment of so many people has made the shinty club a big part of community life for 130 years now."

Hundreds of copies have been snapped up leaving just those for the club's own shelf. The Strathy will be announcing the reprint once the details have been confirmed.

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