The Games Committee has this year chosen to honour one of its own members with the office of Chieftain. Kathleen MacTarggart has been on the committee for 17 years and for ten of those, as the Sponsor Secretary.
Kathleen was born in Aberdeen to William and Beatrice Booth, after her father had been demobbed from the RAF and resumed his career as a papermaker in his home town. The family moved several times before settling in Glasgow, which became home.
On leaving school, Kathleen worked in a lawyer's office until her marriage to William Wilkie. Steven, Fiona and Philip followed and when they started school, Kathleen became an Avon rep, a landlady for students from Glasgow University and did her bit for Play School and Sunday school.
When granny gave the children a pony, thus triggering a lifelong passion for horses, Kathleen found a new career in driving HGVs tagged with horse boxes all over the country and understanding committee politics as Secretary for the Bearsden & Milngave Pony Club.
After her marriage ended, Kathleen transformed her love of cooking into professional catering and replaced watching ponies with listening to pipe bands. These dual interests proved irresistible to 'Mac' MacTaggart (also a William). Kathleen moved to Lothmore in 1991 where she remains enamoured of the beauty and charms of Sutherland.
Kathleen joined the Helmsdale Golf Committee with Mac and also sat on the Helmsdale Flower Show Committee. At one of the Helmsdale Highland Games they helped out at the last minute at a Piping competition, but finished the day co-opted onto the Games committee. The rest is history.
After 17 years, Mac and Kathleen sadly resigned from the Games Committee. Mac's ill health required a refocusing of priorities.
Kathleen would like to thank all those who have supported the games as friends, patrons and advertisers and who dug deep every time they saw her coming and thought- oops it is that time of year again! She is truly delighted to have been asked to be the Chieftain of the Helmsdale & District Highland Games and considers it a huge honour to have been part of the "friendly games"