Clan Donald Canterbury: Mini Golf April 2024

Each year when we complete our events and activities planning for the year, we endeavour to include some activities which will appeal to younger people – our future potential members. This year we scheduled a round of mini golf at Jurassic Adventure for Saturday 27 April 2024.

It was a beautiful, sunny autumn day and a number of members along with 5 younger ones enjoyed a fun afternoon playing a round of golf.


Fintan McLoughlin ready to tee off.



Ian Bright talks with one of the locals.



Fintan McLoughlin and Alan MacDonald



Pictured from left to right, Louis, Thom and Jason Fogarty, Helen Ring, Raewyn Hinton, Andrew Muskee, Carter Bright, Ann Smith, Elise Bright, Maggie Donald, Fintan McLoughlin, Alan MacDonald and Ian Bright



After the mini golf, we gathered at the neighbouring café for afternoon tea.




151st Waipu Highland Games 1 January 2024

New Year’s Eve was very wet and most Clans did not put up their pavilions until on the day which dawned bright and sunny and remained so all day. However the ground in Clan Avenue remained wet and boggy.

The day started with the Clan march reviewed by Dale Bailey of Clan Cameron. The Clan Donald colour party consisted of Geoff Parry banner bearer, Steve MacDonald, Jim Murdoch Auckland President and Tom McDonald, North Island Commissioner.

Clan Donald Banner bearer for the day, Geoff Parry


Clan Donald colour party – Geoff Parry, Steve MacDonald, Jim Murdoch (President, Clan Donald Auckland), Tom McDonald (North Island Commissioner)


Others helping in the pavilion during the day were Murdock McDonald, Marnie MacDonald and Lynnette McDonald. Among the visitors we were pleased to welcome and offer hospitality to Doug McGechan who has been a previous President of Clan Donald Hawkes Bay.


Violaine and Steve MacDonald, members from Kaitaia


Jim, Violaine, Steve, and Geoff


Violaine and Steve MacDonald, Jim Murdoch, Tom McDonald, Marni Macdonald and Geoff Parry


A number of people were asking questions about Clan Donald but no one actually signed up.


A Clanranald supporter with Tom McDonald


We felt the numbers attending the games were down from other years but all were in good cheer.

The next Waipu Games has been changed to New Year’s Eve.

Clan Donald Auckland Christmas Luncheon at Northcote Tavern

On 10 December about 20 clan members attended the Northcote Tavern for lunch. The Northcote Tavern has a Highlander bar with tartan carpet on the floor and Clan Crests and memorabilia from Scotland on the walls. Two pipers from the Signals Band, along with Andrew Wilkie, Iain Foxell and Maria Walker-Kinnell entertained the members and other patrons of the tavern. The pipers were accompanied by two drummers from the Signals Band.

After playing together, the pipers performed solo and played happy birthday for a 90 year old who was having her birthday party at the Tavern.


Maria Walker Kinnell and Drummer of Signals Band


Musicians playing at Northcote Tavern


Maria is 15 years old and has been playing the bagpipes for two years with the Hibiscus Coast Pipe Band. We look forward to seeing her continue to make progress with her piping. She is the granddaughter of Pamela and the late Albert Kinnell who have been members for many years.

Hororata Highland Games 2023



The 12th Hororata Highland Games were held on Saturday 11 November 2023. It was a beautiful, sunny day and a large crowd was in attendance all day.

This year there were 23 Clans occupying the stalls set up in St Andrews Square. Clan Donald was there in force with an early set up of our stall largely completed by our President, Ann Smith and Secretary/Treasurer, Maggie Donald by the time our band of helpers arrived. We appreciated having the additional assistance all day, of Roz McKechnie from Clan Donald, Otago.

A very moving Armistice Day remembrance was held in St Andrews Square at 11.11 am, with music provided by Willie Mcarthur for the ceremony and throughout the day.


Armistice Day remembrance ceremony.


At midday, three of our Clan Donald members carried banners in the parade for the Chieftains Welcoming Ceremony and official opening. Our Clan Donald banner was carried by Maggie Donald (Secretary/Treasurer), The Scottish Society of New Zealand by Gordon McIvor (Chief) and the Canterbury Scottish Heritage Council by Ann Smith (President).


Clan Donald members (left to right), Maggie Donald, Gordon McIvor and Ann Smith ready to carry their banners in the parade for the Chieftains Welcoming Ceremony.


A steady stream of visitors including Clan Donald Canterbury members, friends and those who wished to discuss and further explore their Scottish heritage kept us busy. We are very fortunate to have the assistance of several members who are very proactive at engaging with the many visitors to St Andrews Square. We had one of our most successful recruitments, gaining 15 new members. The challenge now for us is to work to get these new members to attend our meetings and events. We are finding the monthly Scottish evening held at the Rose and Thistle Tavern to be an excellent opportunity for new members to meet some of our clan members in a very relaxed, informal environment.


Brent Tomlinson (Clan Donald Canterbury) and Roz McKechnie (Clan Donald Otago) talking to visitors at St Andrews Square.


Clan Donald Canterbury members picture left to right, Maggie Donald, Alan MacDonald and Ann Smith.


Clan Donald members pictured left to right, Maggie Donald, Sheila Cuthbertson, Brent Tomlinson, Linda Giles, Ann Smith, Gordon McIvor, Alan MacDonald, Kevin Giles and Roz McKechie.




Alan MacDonald

Clan Donald Canterbury


Clan Donald Canterbury Cocktail Party

On Saturday 3 June, Clan Donald Canterbury held a cocktail party which was hosted by, Alan MacDonald with the assistance of Brent and Jill Tomlinson.

Drinks were provided by Alan, Brent and Jill and mixed by Phil McLoughlin who did a sterling job as bartender for the evening. Clan members bought a plate for a continuous supper and prizes were awarded for best dressed and a cocktail quiz.


Bartender, Phil McLoughlin preparing for the rush of orders.



Waiting patiently for a cocktail are (left to right) Ann Smith, Maggie Donald and Raewyn Hinton.


Enjoying their cocktails are (left to right) Valerie Bright and Jill Morris.


Pictured (left to right) Jeanette Bennett, Brent and Jill Tomlinson.


Pictured (left to right) are Alan MacDonald and Andrew Muskee.


Pictured (left to right) Jan Thomas, Carolyn Alsop and Maggie Donald.


Bob Peirson and Marg Gerken.


Pictured left to right Helen Ring and Raewyn Hinton


Valerie and Ian Bright

Clan Donald Canterbury 2023 AGM

Clan Donald Canterbury held their 2023 AGM on Sunday 12 February at 4.00 pm. The AGM is always held on a Sunday near the Glencoe Massacre anniversary (13th February). This year we remembered the occasion with piping by Ann Smith and a talk from Clan Donald member Alan MacDonald on his claim to be recognised as Chief of Glencoe. Alan outlined the process required and the extensive research that has been ongoing for many years but now nearing completion.

Waipu Highland Games 2023

The Waipu Highland Games were back on the 1st of January 2023, after a two year break for the pandemic.

Clan Donald Auckland attended with their pavilion. This year the clans pitched their displays either side of a single “Avenue of Clans.’ This is a more friendly way of gathering us together. We were in for an early start – the march into the park was prompt at 9 am.


Colour Party Tom McDonald, Geoff Parry, Jim Murdoch, obscured, after the march into the grounds.



The midday parade of clans with James Donald, Jim Murdoch, Tom McDonald and Geoff Parry representing Clan Donald.


The day was fine with just some cloud, so sun cream was in order. Three new members were signed up. The South Island Commissioner Elwyn Martin with Christine were surprise visitors.



New members Shona and friend with Tom McDonald.



Elwyn Martin and Christine with President Jim Murdoch.



Clan Member Mark Cochrane presented Clan Donald with a copy of his new book “Boudicca – her place in history and the fortunes of her tribe” Mark had researched the material for this thick tome over a period of 10 years. The book endeavours to reveal what actually happened when in 60AD, Boudicca was elected to lead the united British tribes in their war against Roman rule. It also seeks to follow the fate of her tribal people – the Iceni.



Mark Cochrane presents his new book to Tom McDonald, Secretary of Clan Donald Auckland.