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WATCH: Scottish Traditional Boat Festival's 30th anniversary opened by Princess Anne

By Kyle Ritchie

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The Princess Royal officially opened the 30th anniversary of the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival on a busy first day for the event.

Mixed weather conditions did not deter the crowds on Saturday with thousands flocking to Portsoy for the celebration of the north-east's maritime heritage.

Her Royal Highness Princess Anne toured the festival with her husband Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence.

The Princess Royal spoke to many people involved with the event including the Macduff and Buckie RNLI crews.

This was Her Royal Highness’ second visit to the event, having previously attended in 2009.

A flotilla of heritage vessels from across the UK have dropped anchor in Portsoy, for a weekend celebrating the north-east’s rich seafaring heritage and culture.

Princess Anne is Patron of several maritime-related organisations including the Marine Society and Sea Cadets, Maritime UK, The National Coastwatch Institution, Scottish Fisheries Museum’s Reaper Appeal and The Mission to Seafarers.

Lord Lieutenant of Banffshire Andrew Simpson welcomed Her Royal Highness to Portsoy and the Portsoy Pipe Band performed a lively display.

Following the opening ceremony, Princess Anne spent the day meeting the individuals and volunteers involved in organising the festival, which was first held in 1993 to mark the tercentenary of Portsoy Harbour.

Since then, it has grown to become one of the largest gatherings of traditional boats in Scotland and more than 15,000 visitors are expected to attend over the two days.

The festival is sponsored by ACE Winches, Glenglassaugh, Puffin Pellets, Hamlyns of Scotland Oatmeal, Macduff Shipyards, Portsoy Thrift Shop, Twice Buried Rum, Moray West, Urquhart Joinery Services, the Portsoy 75 Club and Gray Composting Services.

The festival continues on Sunday and the programme of events can be found on the event's website as well as further information.

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