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Tuesday, 4 September, 2001, 14:17 GMT 15:17 UK
Spurned sporran sparks disease fears
Kilt sporran
The sporran's goat hair put Australian officials on edge
A Welsh kilt has become an unlikely victim of foot-and-mouth disease after a bridegroom's sporran was quarantined in Australia.

Customs officials Down Under confiscated the suspect regalia from soon-to-be-wed Gareth Moore before his big day.


It could take weeks before he gets it as it has to have radiation treatment

John Wake, Welsh Tartan Centre
In preparation, 46-year-old Mr Moore - whose family come from Barry near Cardiff - had ordered a full outfit - including a kilt, jacket, waistcoat and tie - to be sent over to Melbourne for the marriage.

But he was surprised to discover the sporran - or 'sgrepan' in Welsh - was not included when he opened the package.

After making inquiries, Mr Moore discovered that the sporran, which is made from leather, Welsh cob and goat hair, had been taken into quarantine by Australian officials.

Sterilised kilt

They said it would have to be sterilised to kill off any possible traces of the disease before he could claim it.

John Wake of the Welsh Tartan Centre in Cardiff's High Street Arcade said: "We sent the full regalia, but he told us he did not receive the sporran.

Gareth Moore, kilt and sporran owner
Gareth Moore wanted to marry in the kilt
"We knew we had sent it, so we checked at our end and he checked in Australia and we found it had been taken into quarantine."

The Welsh Tartan Centre said the Welsh wore kilts 2,000 years ago, named after regions rather than family names as in Scotland.

With the wedding due to take place next months, the race is now on to get the sporran to the church on time.

Mr Wake explained: "It could take weeks before he gets it as it has to have radiation treatment, and he has also been told that he will have to pay AUS$42 to get it back."

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 ON THIS STORY
BBC Wales's Penny Roberts
"The sporran has been zapped with gamma rays to kill any possible bugs"
See also:

25 Jul 00 | Scotland
Kilts dance to new tune
20 Jul 01 | Scotland
Logan's love match
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