The charity established in memory of Manchester Arena victim Eilidh MacLeod is set to benefit from an exclusive sale of Isle of Eriskay tartan.
As part of the forthcoming official launch of the Eilidh MacLeod Memorial Trust in Glasgow, an eight-yard length of the tartan is being auctioned off online - along with numerous other items - to support the long-term ambitions of the trust in Eilidh’s memory. So far only a limited amount of the tartan has been woven which adds to its uniqueness.
The tartan was very generously donated to the trust by Co-chomunn Eirisgeidh (Eriskay Community Co-operative) who are the only people allowed to authorise the use of the tartan.
The design by Brian Wilton is based on the Royal Stewart check – a nod to Bonnie Prince Charlie landing on the island from France in the mid-18th century.
The colours capture Eriskay’s landscape, sea and sands. There is also a hint of pink in the check which reflects the sea bindweed plant, thought to have been accidentally introduced to the island when seeds fell from Bonnie Prince Charlie’s handkerchief.
In addition to the unique tartan, Ayrshire-based McCallum Highland Wear has offered to have the 8-yards made into a kilt for the highest bidder along with £250 to spend on kilt accessories.
The online Eilidh’s Trust Charity Auction is currently live and accepting bids on the tartan and made-to-measure package as well as a range of other items.
Among the items up for grabs are island gins and malt whiskies, signed football tops, luxury hotel stays, a variety of Harris Tweed products and a behind-the-scenes studio tour with breakfast TV presenter Lorraine Kelly.
There is also a one-of-a-kind Isle of Barra flag signed by several Celtic FC legends including current captain Scott Brown.
The auction will close at the Eilidh’s Trust Tartan and Tiaras Ball on 6th September which takes place in Oran Mor in Glasgow’s west end.
Singer and broadcaster Michelle McManus, actor and comedian Sanjeev Kohli, Glasgow-Hebridean band Trail West and bagpipe rock band Drums and Roses will join a host of young and upcoming musicians in a showcase of Scottish and Gaelic talent at the event.
Eilidh’s Trust was established in October 2018 in memory of 14-year-old Eilidh MacLeod from the Isle of Barra who died along with 21 others in the Manchester Arena attack in May 2017.
The trust aims to support music education for young people reflecting Eilidh’s own musical ability and enjoyment as a piper and member of the Sgoil Lionacleit Pipe Band.
The trust will also manage and maintain a permanent memorial to Eilidh and a garden of remembrance and reflection on Barra.
Suzanne White, founder of the Eilidh MacLeod Memorial Trust said: “The donation of the exclusive Isle of Eriskay tartan is incredibly generous and we are grateful to the island’s community for their support of the Trust through this gesture.
“This is genuinely a unique offer which is further enhanced thanks to the kindness of McCallum Highland Wear to have it made-to-measure and supply accessories.
“The trust has been overwhelmed by the level of support for our launch event and charity auction and we are so appreciative to everyone who has donated items for it.
“We are really looking forward to welcoming so many people to our Tartan and Tiaras event on 6th September which will be a celebration of how far we came since we were established last year.
“It promises to be a great night with some excellent new and established talent which will launch the charity with style.”
Catriona Walker, Co-chomunn Eirisgeidh manager, added: “We are really proud of our island’s beautiful and unique tartan and we are delighted to support Eilidh’s Trust by this donation to their auction.
“We fully support the trust’s ambition of supporting music education for other young people in Eilidh’s memory and we’re keen to play our part in making that happen.
“We hope everyone will be as generous as possible in their bidding and we look forward to supplying another very special delivery of Isle of Eriskay tartan to the lucky winner.”
Limited tickets are still available for the Tartan and Tiaras Ball via Eventbrite priced at £85 each. The black-tie event which starts at 6pm will consist of a drinks reception, a three course meal, entertainment, ceilidh and auction.