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Last Updated: Sunday, 4 September 2005, 11:05 GMT 12:05 UK
Python fans in castle pilgrimage
Doune Castle (Picture by Undiscovered Scotland)
Doune Castle appears several times in the movie
Hundreds of fans are making a pilgrimage to the Scottish castle which was used in the filming of Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

Organisers were bowled over when 1,400 people attended the first Monty Python day at Doune Castle last year.

This year's sell-out event has been restricted to 500 people, who will each receive their own shrubbery in memory of one of the film's running gags.

The events will include a Python Idle contest, named after group member Eric.

There will also be sketch recreations and about 1,200 coconut shells have been flown in from Florida so fans can clip-clop along during a screening of the film.

Spamalot musical
The film provided the inspiration for a hit musical

The first event was held at Doune Castle, near Stirling, to mark the 30th anniversary of the movie.

The 14th Century building appeared several times in the film, being used as Camelot, the Castle of Guy de Lombard, the Swamp Castle and Castle Anthrax.

It was privately owned at the time of filming, but is now under the stewardship of Historic Scotland.

Event manager Nick Finnigan said last year's event had received a "fantastic" response.

"We really did have everybody from five to 85 coming along, it was astonishing," he said.

Ongoing effect

"In the children's cases, it has been a fantastic effect that their parents have had on them."

The impersonation competition had to be split into different age groups because of the number of entrants last year.

"There were children of 10 and 12 years old who were able to repeat 10 to 15 minute sketches verbatim, so clearly it has an ongoing effect way beyond what you could describe as being a cult," he said.

The Holy Grail provided the inspiration for the musical Spamalot, which has been a major success on Broadway.

Spamalot takes US critics awards
09 May 05 |  Entertainment
Spamalot arrives on Broadway
18 Mar 05 |  Entertainment
Python's Grail 'best Brit film'
12 Feb 04 |  Entertainment
Three decades of Python
08 Oct 99 |  Monty Python

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