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THE HebCelt is going toe-to-toe with Scotland’s two biggest cities to be crowned as home of the country’s best major public festival.

HCF has been shortlisted, with Edinburgh’s Hogmanay and Glasgow’s Celtic Connections, for the title of Best Large Festival in the prestigious Scottish Event Awards. A two-time Event of the Year winner in the Scots Trad Music Awards, and twice nominated also for the Scottish Thistle Awards, the HebCelt was born from a local desire to combine world class Celtic arts performance with strong elements of Hebridean Culture to provide a focus for the local creative community. This year, it has also clinched a second Scottish Event Awards shortlisting, for Best Traditional Event, in which it competes with Glasgow’s ‘Piping Live’ festival and the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival, held at Portsoy in Banff-shire.

All category winners are announced at the industry-sponsored Scottish Event Awards annual ceremony at Edinburgh Corn Exchange in September. HebCelt Festival Director Caroline Maclennan said: “Our volunteers, the artists and our festival-goers will be delighted that professional events industry recognition, at the highest levels, is increasingly directed at the HebCelt as well as Scotland’s higher-cost, big city festivals.” Watch out tomorrow for more behind the scenes info as the festival prepares for opening day.