Clavie – Auld New Year

Hundreds of locals and visitors braved the subzero temperatures in Burghead to watch the 1,600-year-old tradition of the Burning of the Clavie. A Fire festival which marks the old New Year. A really impressive sight as the faces are lit up by the flames. This was my 3rd Clavie and now getting a hang of shooting the pictures… Enjoy


  1. I was reading about something very similar, in Alston in Northumberland. I was heading south to Norfolk for New Year but Iโ€™m pretty sure Iโ€™d have got rubbish photos. Happy New Year, Scott! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Happy New Year Jo getting the shots is difficult- trial and error as it’s dark surrounded by very bright – but the fire was changing as they through the tar on nightmare and luck really

  2. Not to be picky Scott, but shouldn’t it be ” as the faces are lit up by the flames”? Sorry but I tend to pick up on these annoying little things, maybe it’s just me though.
    Love the photos, maybe a bit more history of the event and some description as to what it is all about.

    1. Lit is correct Tommy – cheers. I am a photo blogger so I tend to concentrate on the pictures – with just an overview of what’s going on – then people can either explore and learn for themselves or ask me and we then engage in conversation. If you give people everything – they hit like and move on ( no engagement) – which for me is a rather sterile process. A reason I moved to WordPress 5 years ago from Facebook and haven’t regretted it.

  3. I don’t think I’ve ever heard of this, and it’s 1600 years old? Amazing. Terrific pictures, I especially like the one showing the group of people.

    1. Lorna, it’s just an excuse for a party – The Clavie King maintains it is holding on to an old tradition- whilst many other villages have let the auld New Year go Burghead have maintained it. It is tough to photograph though.

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