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Last Updated: Sunday, 4 September 2005, 23:24 GMT 00:24 UK
Tartan designed for Dutch kilts
Holland tartan
The tartan was designed to cope with growing demand in Holland
The University of St Andrews has designed a new tartan after growing demand for a specific kilt for Holland.

Dr David Wishart designed a tartan for the Dutch to wear at Scottish events like the annual Dutch Whisky Festival.

The tartan took five months to design and has been officially registered by the Scottish Tartans Authority.

It combines the colours of the Netherlands national flag - red, white and blue - with orange, representing the Royal House of Orange.

The Tartan of Holland was unveiled on Saturday by the first Dutchmen to wear the new tartan.

Crescens Akkermans and his brother Pierre travelled from Amsterdam to collect their new kilt outfits.

They include specially designed black fur sporrans and belts incorporating the lion rampant of the Netherlands.

Growing support

The tartan has been officially registered under the International Tartan Index of the Scottish Tartans Authority, which registers several hundred new tartans every year.

The first consignment of kilts and scarves produced in Galashiels has already been pre-sold in the Netherlands, with another batch being reordered.

Dr Wishart said there was growing support for Holland to have its own tartan.

"About 5,000 whisky lovers attend the Dutch Whisky Festival in Leiden each November and many wear kilts for the occasion," he said.

David Wishart
The Tartan of Holland will surely link our two proud and historic nations more closely
Dr David Wishart
University of St Andrews

"However, there was no really suitable tartan for the whisky lovers of Holland until now."

Some keen Dutch enthusiasts therefore "borrowed" a Scottish family link as an excuse to wear their tartan, he added.

A Dutch MacKay tartan was created to honour Baron Aeneas Mackay, prime minister of the Netherlands 1888-91, the great grandfather of the present chief of the MacKays.

"The Netherlands, our closest neighbour on continental Europe, now has its own wholly original tartan," Dr Wishart said.

The tartan was designed - under the advice of kilt-makers - using a computer-based design programme, and the first batch was manufactured last week at Lochcarron's Nether Mill in Galashiels.

Tartan traditionalists perhaps unhappy at the move should note the strong trading history between Scotland and Holland, Dr Wishart said.

"The Tartan of Holland will surely link our two proud and historic nations more closely," he added.

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