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Mar 5 15

Ringwood Highland Games, VIC – 29 March 2015

by Glenda Dickson

On Sunday, 29th March, 2015 the Ringwood Highland Games will be held at the East Ringwood Sports Ground, Corner Mt Dandenong Road and Dublin Road, East Ringwood, Victoria.

Gates open at 9am, the Grand Parade of the Clans will be at 1.20pm followed by the Official Opening at 1.30pm.

Activities include:

  • Scottish Country Dancing
  • Pipe Band Performances
  • Highland Dancing Premiership
  • Dog Flyball Competitions
  • Light/Heavy Games
  • Haggis Hurling / Welly Boot Throwing
  • Historical Scottish Martial Arts
  • Scottish Clan Tents
  • Children Animal Farm

The games will end on a high note with a gathering of massed pipe bands at 4.30pm.

For further information please visit the website:

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Mar 4 15

BRIGADOON at Bundanoon, NSW – 11 April 2015

by Glenda Dickson

Brigadoon - banner

The 38th Annual Highland Gathering at Bundanoon, New South Wales will be held on 11th April 2015 – Rain, Hail or Shine!

For further information please visit the website:

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Feb 13 15

Mount Barker Highland Gathering, South Australia – Sunday 15th February, 2015

by Glenda Dickson

Join us at the CLAN MACFARLANE tent this Sunday (15th February)

Mount Barker Highland Gathering

Keith Stephenson Park

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Feb 10 15

Scots Day Out, Bendigo, Victoria – 14 February 2015

by Glenda Dickson

Scots Day OutThe Scots Day Out in Bendigo commences with a street parade at 10am. There will be Scottish stalls, clan tents, celtic performances, highland dancing competitions and activities for the children. The finale at 4.30pm is the Dash’n’Kilts run over 200 metres.

Check out this great video clip

and/or visit for further information.



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Jan 9 15

Preserving Our Clan Heritage

by Glenda Dickson

Ellan VhowThere is an island in the middle of Loch Lomond, Scotland that is known by various names: Elanvow, Ellan Vhow, Eilean A Vow, Island I Vow.

On this very small uninhabited island lie the ruins of a MacFarlane castle. Built in 1577 by Andrew MacFarlane, hero of the Battle of Langside, and once the stronghold of the Clan, this castle had virtually disappeared amidst the overgrowth before the Ellan Vhow Preservation Fund (EVPF) came to the rescue. Below is a picture of the Cellar (Dungeon) entrance:


Cellar or Dungeon EntranceUS high school student, Katherine McFarlin, is credited with having started this independent project under the supervision of local Scottish archaelogist, Fiona Baker. Many more people and organisations have now come to support this project. The Ellan Vhow Preservation Fund have their own website: which covers the history surrounding the castle and the island, updates on the status of the project, and also includes many facts, suppositions and myths surrounding the island. There are wonderful pictures including 3D images of the castle. The only way to visit this island is by boat and our Membership Secretary, Anita Renfrey, was privileged to do so on her trip to Scotland last year.

Preservation work on the island has been slow going due to a number of reasons, financial constraints, weather conditions, and even the need to consider the welfare of a resident bat population! We are pleased to report, however, that the project is now in its third stage but it does need help with donations to progress further.

Our Society has made a significant contribution to the funds, and our members have also responded previously to the call for donations, but hopefully there are many more donations forthcoming to help preserve our MacFarlane heritage. All donors are acknowledged on the EVPF website.  If you are able to help, or would like further information please visit

We have also published information on this project previously in our quarterly newsletter, particulary an article with the same name as this in our December 2012 issue. A copy of this is available in the Members Area.

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Jan 4 15

Victorian Railways – A List of all Persons Employed in the Railway Service on the 31st January, 1884

by Glenda Dickson

The Victorian Government Gazette (No. 64), published on Friday, May 23, 1884 lists all persons employed by the Victorian Railways on the 31st January, 1884.

The list includes the persons Name in Full, their Rank, Position or Grade, and the Branch they were employed in. There seem to be a great number of Scottish names on the list. Some names connected with our Clan are:

McFarland, Samuel – Clerk, Secretary’s Branch

McFarlane, Allan – Repairer, Engineers Branch

McFarlane, Daniel – Signalman, Traffic Branch

McFarlane, John – Lad, Engineers Branch

McFarlane, Thomas – Acting Porter, Traffic Branch

If any of these people are connected with your family, we would be pleased to hear from you.

The full Triennial List of Railway Employees 1884 – 1918 is available free from under the tab Downloads, but please note that it is a huge file (90MB).


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Dec 17 14

List of persons who have received loans of money from the Island and Highland Emigration Society to enable them to emigrate from their native country to Victoria

by Glenda Dickson

This list covers loans dated between 1852 and 1854 and includes the date of the promissory note, name of head of the family, former residence, the ship they arrived by, and the amount due by the family.

To view the digitised record online at the State Library of Victoria, just click on the following link:

There is only one MACFARLANE listed:

Date of Promissory Note: May 17, 1852 – Name of Head of the Family: MacFarlane, Malcolm

Former Residence: Marishadder – Ship Arrived By: Arabian – Amount Due by Family: 31 pounds 2s 2d






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Dec 8 14

Macfarlane Lang & Co.’s – Biscuit Making 1928

by Christine Coe

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Nov 15 14

19th Gathering of the Clans, Norah Head, NSW – Saturday 5 September 2015

by Glenda Dickson

In 2014 11 pipe bands and 17 clan societies and Scottish special interest groups were represented at the Gathering of the Clans at Norah Head in New South Wales, also the venue for the Central Coast National Highland Dancing Titles.  However, in 2015 the organisers are hoping to also welcome more of our ‘Celtic Cousins’ (Asturian, Breton, Cornish, Galician, Irish, Manx and Welsh).

For further information please contact Gathering of the Clans


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Nov 15 14

Melbourne Scottish Fiddle Club – End of Year Concert – Sunday 7 December 2014 – Balwyn, Victoria

by Glenda Dickson

Melbourne Scottish Fiddle Club

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