Martin Whitfield MSP has tabled at the Scottish Parliament welcoming the full return of local gala days and praising the volunteers, families and businesses involved in organising and supporting them this year.

Mr Whitfield laid the motion to recognise the fact that many gala days and other local community festivals have not been able to take place over the last two years and highlight the importance of their return for local communities.

Speaking about the return of galas, Martin Whitfield MSP said:

“Gala days are a hugely important local tradition for communities across East Lothian and other parts of the South Scotland region. They have a much loved, historic role within many of our towns and villages and it was a real blow to see them cancelled or scaled back over the last couple of years.

“Being able to celebrate galas and other community days in person again this summer has been a welcome boost for children and families across the county. I’m pleased to recognise their return and thank all of the committee members, volunteers, businesses and families who have helped bring galas back to our communities this year.”

The full motion reads as follows:

That the Parliament welcomes the full return of local gala days and weeks and other traditional festivals in communities across the South Scotland region this summer; notes that, due to COVID-19, galas and similar events were mostly cancelled or scaled down in 2020 and 2021, interrupting years of historic local activity, which aim to bring communities together and give so much pleasure to children and families; congratulates the 2022 gala queens and court members; thanks all of the committee members, other volunteers, families and businesses, who help ensure galas and other community days throughout South Scotland are able to take place, for their dedicated work on behalf of their local communities, and wishes all local galas and other festivals every success this year.