Worldwide volunteers head to HebCelt 2012

HebCelt regular volunteer Andreas Gschwari is introducing the island party to his father this year.

HebCelt regular volunteer Andreas Gschwari is introducing the island party to his father this year.

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Alois Gschwari was at home in Austria when his phone rang and he heard the Peatbog Fearies blasting down the line from Stornoway.

His son, Andreas, had travelled to the Hebridean Celtic Festival in Lewis on a whim and wanted his father to share the experience of the island event from hundreds of miles away.

This week Alois, 60, a retired petrol station owner from St. Johann in Tirol, will make his first trip to Scotland to enjoy HebCelt at first hand when he joins his son as one of the army of unpaid volunteers working behind the scenes.

Andreas, 35, a computer game designer based in Uppsala, Sweden, will be making his ninth trip to HebCelt and his fifth as a volunteer.

He said: “I like Celtic and UK folk music and saw some of my favourite bands playing at something called the Hebridean Celtic Festival. Then I saw where that was on a map and how to get there. I booked my tickets and off I went.

“On my own, not knowing anyone, it was one of the best experiences of my life and I have been going ever since. Knowing my dad, he will feel the same and he’ll become a repeat volunteer as well.”