Attempt to break haggis hurling record which was set at Milngavie and Bearsden Highland Games

AN attempt to break the current world record for haggis hurling, which was set at the Milngavie and Bearsden Highland Games two years ago, is going to be made at an event to celebrate Robert Burns’ birthday.

The competition will take place at the National Trust for Scotland’s Robert Burns Birthplace Museum in Alloway on January 29.

The current record for haggis hurling was set in June 2011 by Lorne Coltart of Blair Atholl when he threw a haggis 214 feet and nine inches at the 39th Milngavie and Bearsden Highland games.

Now hurlers are being invited to establish a new world record at Burns Cottage.

Haggis Hurling dates back to early Scottish Clan Gatherings, where the women folk would toss a haggis across a stream to their husbands, who would catch the haggis in their kilts. The 17th century Scot, Dr L Maddox, was especially famous for his haggis catching ability.

Event organiser Stuart Cochrane said: ”Haggis hurling dates back beyond the Bard, but we are sure he would have enjoyed seeing our national dish involved in such a challenging sport.

“We are hoping that some stout lads and lassies will come along and try to make history as part of our celebrations for Burns’ birthday.”

The purpose is to compete for both distance and accuracy from on top of a platform, usually a half a whisky barrel.

The haggis must be of traditional construction, consisting of a tender boiled sheep’s heart, lung and liver with spices, onions, suet and oatmeal and stock stuffed in a sheep’s paunch, boiled for three hours.

At the time of hurling the haggis should be cooled and inspected to ensure no firming agents have been applied. Rules dictate that the haggis must be packed tight and secure, with no extra “skin” or “flab.”

The sporting haggis weighs 500 grams, with a maximum diameter of 18cm and length of 22cm. An allowance of plus or minus 30 grams is given and this weight is used in both junior and middle weight events.

The heavyweight event allows haggis up to 1 kg in weight, but the standard weight of 850 grams is more common, with an allowance of plus or minus 50 grams.

This is the second year that haggis hurling will take place at the museum and the competition runs from 1pm until 4pm.