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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 September, 2004, 15:51 GMT 16:51 UK
Royals enjoy sunny Highland games
Prince Philip, the Queen and Prince Charles
The Queen is a regular at the Braemar Gathering
Members of the Royal Family have joined an estimated crowd of 18,000 in the sunshine for the Braemar Gathering in the heart of Aberdeenshire.

The Queen, who is patron of the Highland games, attended with the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales.

There was no sign of Prime Minister Tony Blair, who was at the games last year with his wife Cherie.

The Royal Family have regularly attended the Braemar games since Queen Victoria first attended in 1848.

The Queen was wearing an emerald green jacket and skirt with a matching hat with green feathers and dark trim, while the Duke and the Prince were wearing kilts.

Pipe band members at the Braemar Highland Games
The crowds were entertained by pipes and drums
Her Majesty was presented with a heather posy by 13-year-old Lettie Blackett of Braemar before watching a parade by special guests the Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas as well as dancing, piping and tossing the caber.

The family travelled to the games on Royal Deeside from nearby Balmoral Castle, where they are staying for their summer vacation.

In the arena, Blue Peter presenters Liz Barker, Matt Baker and Simon Thomson were also getting into the Scottish spirit as they took part in some of the competitions.

The Blue Peter crew were filming for their new series, which starts on Monday.

Simon and Matt took part in the sack race and had a shot at tossing the caber.

Matt Baker
Blue Peter presenter Matt Baker (left) takes part in the tug of war
"We went to the Highland games in Oban four years ago and enjoyed it so much we said we had to come back to Scotland for another one," said Baker.

"It's beautiful up here."

Meanwhile, games official Bert McLeod was using a conventional starting pistol this year after he shot himself in the hand with an antique pistol at the games last year.

Blairs join royals at Braemar
06 Sep 03  |  Scotland
Royals attend Highland event
07 Sep 02  |  Scotland
Queen Mother misses games
01 Sep 01  |  Scotland

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