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Written by on 27/07/2015


 One of Scotland’s most high profile actors has been unveiled as the Honorary Chieftain of Cowal Highland Gathering (CHG) 2015.

Greenock-born Martin Compston – who burst onto the big screen in 2002 in the lead role of Liam in Sweet Sixteen – is making the 5,000 mile trip from Los Angeles to take his place as the ceremonial head of this year’s event.

Dunoon Stadium on Gathering Saturday may be a far cry from the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, but Martin is thrilled at the prospect of accepting the salute from the spectacular massed bands as well as presenting the trophies in the prestigious Highland Dancing and Pipe Band competitions.

“It’s an absolute privilege to be asked to be Chieftain at the Cowal Highland Gathering,” he said.

“Having grown up just across the water in Greenock, I know what an event these games are to the West coast of Scotland. They are the perfect way to bring an end to any glimpse of Summer we may have had!

“I have happy memories of getting the ferry across with my family as a kid to
watch the Caber toss, Highland Dancing and the magnificent Pipe Band
competitions, and it is a true honour to be asked to come back as Chieftain.
“Fingers crossed for a bit of sunshine!”

 CHG Chair Ronnie Cairns said he was delighted to have Martin as this year’s Chieftain.

“Every year, we try to ensure that our Chieftain is an individual with strong ties to this area who has excelled in their chosen field, and we are very pleased to have met those criteria so spectacularly this year,” he added.

“Martin Compston is a Scottish actor who has won critical acclaim in virtually everything he has appeared in, from ‘Sweet Sixteen’ to ‘Monarch of the Glen’ to ‘Line of Duty’.

“Martin was born and brought up in Greenock, and even signed as a professional footballer for Greenock Morton before successfully auditioning for the lead role in Sweet Sixteen having never done any acting before.  The rest, as they say, is history.

“However, despite winning countless awards for his work and travelling around the world living the dream of a successful actor, he has retained his love for his home town and the surrounding area.

“We’re delighted he’s agreed to be the Cowal Highland Gathering Chieftain this year.  Although our event boasts many of the world’s top pipers, heavy athletes and dancers, Martin’s presence will add genuine star quality to the proceedings.

“We very much look forward to welcoming him to Dunoon for what is shaping up to be a fantastic weekend of action and entertainment.”

This year’s Cowal Highland Gathering, with main sponsorship from the Scottish Salmon Company, runs from Thursday 27 to Saturday 29 August.

For more information about the event or to buy tickets, please visit the Gathering’s website at or contact the event office by emailing or phoning 01369 703206.