THIS year’s Bearsden and Milngavie Highland Games has been given a huge boost in a bid to make it bigger and better than ever.

Organisers have been granted £3,000 to spend on advertising the event throughout Scotland.

The games take place on June 9 - the same day that the Olympic torch will pass through Bearsden - and it is hoped that the two events will combine to make a memorable day out.

Organisers are also looking at boosting numbers - which took a hit last year due to foul weather - by scrapping admission charges.

East Dunbartonshire Council will provide the cash as part of its Community Grants Scheme, which also saw two other local initiatives get a boost.

Alan Oliver, chair and games organiser, said: “The games will be taking place on the same day that the Olympic torch passes through Bearsden, so it’s going to be a great day. We are very appreciative of this grant, which will go a long way to help stage the event and help make it free for the public.”

The Royal British Legion (Milngavie and Bearsden branch) has received £300 from the scheme.

This group provides support for the welfare of ex-service men and women and the funding will be used to fund speakers and trips for members.

East Dunbartonshire Cycle Co-operative has received £2,750 towards organising a cycle festival.

Details are yet to be finalised, but it is believed this will be a highly prestigious event, attended by around 2,200 people.

The Community Grants Scheme is supported by the Grants Advisory Committee (GAC), a group of 25 members of the community who volunteer their time to assess applications and make recommendations.

Sandy McGarvey, head of community services at East Dunbartonshire Council, said: “These grants make a real difference to the groups which offer a wide range of worthwhile projects and support to many people across East Dunbartonshire. We would also like to thank the GAC for their ongoing commitment and hard work.”

Gino Satti, chair of the GAC, said: “We are pleased to be involved in this scheme and look forward to hearing more about how the projects are progressing.”