‘Major blow’ as Scotland’s six-day orienteering event takes place in Moray

MORAY has secured a “major hit” with Scotland’s Six Days Orienteering event set to return to the region.

The biennial event – which is the biggest on the UK orienteering calendar – is scheduled to take place from July 30 to August 4, 2023 in Lossie Forest, Darnaway, Roseisle and Culbin.

The event was held in Moray in the same areas – minus Darnaway – in 2013, while the area hosted part of the event, which was officially hosted by the Highlands, in 2015.

More than 2,500 competitors from across Europe expected to take part in the event which, last year on a scaled down scale, brought in over £1million to the local economy in Lochaber, where it s ‘must.

The Scottish Six Days. Photo: Wendy Carlyle

Elizabeth Furness, the Events Co-ordinator, said: “This event returning to Moray in the space of 10 years is a major blow to the region.

“It reflects its popularity as a place, with its vast wooded sand dunes and mixed wooded estates.

“The event typically attracts over 2,500 competitors, along with their families and friends – so it will be a major boost to the local economy.

“Leaving aside the obvious – such as accommodation and food – most competitors consider this as one of their annual vacations – and extend their stay to visit local attractions and enjoy the scenery.”

The competition is designed to provide the highest quality orienteering throughout the week in a relaxed atmosphere. It aims to appeal to all ages and skill levels, from elite athletes to newcomers.

The age groups range from under 10 to 80 and over. Entries for next year’s competition will open on December 1, 2022.

Elizabeth added: “The Scottish Six Days is widely regarded as one of the best multi-day orienteering events in the world.

“A strong international representation is still present, with a traditionally large Scandinavian contingent, and more recently the event has grown in popularity with competitors from Eastern Europe.

“The central organizing team is made up of local club orienteers and they are already working hard to ensure the success of the event.

“Tenders will be launched shortly to cover many different sectors of the economy – including on-site catering, portable toilets and first aid cover.

“In particular, even at this very early stage, we are urging accommodation providers to open up their bookings for next year. The orienteers are very organized – and we know bookings have already been made.”

Organizers are currently applying for two of the days to be given world ranking event status in a bid to attract the world’s best orienteers.

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Dino J. Dotson