Nationalists welcome Haddo reception for Olympic athletes

SNP councillors in Aberdeenshire have welcomed the news that Olympic athletes from the area are to be honoured with a civic reception at Haddo House.

The party had called for recognition of the shire’s athletes last week, after the north-east’s exceptional performance at the London Olympics.

The public event, organised in partnership between Aberdeenshire Council and Aberdeen City Council, will take place on Sunday, September 16,and will involve a procession through the city in an open topped bus before travel out to Haddo House, where the competitors will be greeted with a private civic reception. Organisers at both the city and shire councils are hoping for a good turnout along the route of the procession.

The north-east’s athletes have already been honoured with gold postboxes in their home towns.

Shadow Leader of the Council Hamish Vernal, who approached Provost Jill Webster suggesting an event be held to recognise North-east athletes said: “I’m delighted for the athletes and those from the North-east involved in the Olympic success that this event will be taking place.

“The medal winners and the many local athletes, torch-bearers, stewards and families of those involved who did so much to contribute to the event have done Scotland proud and it’s right and proper that the North-east honours its own.”

Aberdeenshire provost, Cllr Jill Webster, said: “This year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games in London are already written into modern British history, and we are proud of the role played by the north-east of Scotland in making that happen.

“This is an opportunity to celebrate not just the athletes, but the other performers and those who worked behind the scenes to make it such a special summer for the whole country.

“The arrival of the Olympic flame in June was a chance to welcome the Games to Britain, and I encourage everyone to come and be part of our farewell celebrations next month.”