The Isle of Arran, as well as being a close neighbouring island to us here on Bute, is one of the most spectacular islands off the west coast of Scotland. Often referred to as “Scotland in Miniature”, the island boasts lofty mountains, a wild and varied coastline, superb gold courses and beautiful villages – just like Scotland as a whole. And now the island is playing host to the very first festival for vegans, Arran VegFest 2020, being held on 14th-15th March 2020. Bute Island Foods is proud to be a sponsor of this inaugural event on our island neighbour.
Based at Arran High School in Lamlash, Arran VegFest celebrates the widespread growth of the vegan and plant-based lifestyle. Survey estimates range from 2.2 million to 3.5 million vegans in the UK, and the festival aims to showcase Arran’s vegan offerings, and to inform, educate and inspire the Arran community and visitors to the island about the benefits of the vegan lifestyle.
A number of inspirational speakers will be attending the festival. Dr Laura Freeman, Certified Lifestyle Medical Physician, relates how a cancer diagnosis three years ago transformed the way she approaches her patients. Arran resident Keith Robertson, founder of the Scottish School of Herbal Medicine, will talk about Cruelty Free aspects, while Nicola Dee Kelly, another resident, will speak about Medicinal Herbs and Vegan Cookery.
Vegan triathlete Dave Sheehan, a High Performance Coach and founder of Go Vegan Grow will also be speaking, along with Barbara Bolton, founder of Go Vegan Scotland, who will also have a stall at the event. Other stalls include the Scottish Herbal Medicine School, Breagha Holistic Massage and the RSPB.
And of course there will be a host of wonderful food, cookery and tasting stands from on and off the island, including of course one with a variety of Bute Island Foods Sheese products. Edinburgh-based singer songwriter Laura Silverstone will be providing the entertainment. Children are also catered for, with an Art & Words competition with themes including Caring for All Animals and Eat Your Fruit and Veg. Winners in each category will be announced, and prizes presented, at the end of the second day’s festivities, and you can download the entry form on the Arran VegFest website.
With so many things to see and do, you will undoubtedly feel peckish by the end of Saturday. The Pierhead Tavern in Lamlash will be hosting a vegan dinner, where you can mingle and chat to all the speakers and organisers from the event. And don’t forget the film viewings of the award-winning The Game Changer and 73 Cows.
Whether you are already a vegan or just curious about the many benefits of adopting a cruelty-free lifestyle, this is the event for you. Set on one of the most glorious of Scotland’s islands, there will be time to explore and take in some of the superb vistas and seascapes. Can there be a more perfect setting for a vegan festival?