Busby goes the extra mile

Celebrations were in full swing in East Renfrewshire on Saturday at the Busby Commonwealth Festival.

The event, organised by the Busby Parent Council and held at Williamwood High’s running track, saw 1,200 residents get into the Glasgow 2014 spirit with sports galore and entertainment to top it off.

The sporting side included a relay marathon race of four teams — Scotland, India, Tuvalu and Mauritius — kicked off by Olympian and local lass Lee McConnell.

The athletes then gave way to host Ken Macintosh MSP, who introduced acts from steel bands to Highland flings, and an interactive performance from Bollywood dance troupe Bollyfeat — not to mention Busby’s own Bollywood dancers, trained by Mr Rajesh Sai Baba.

Event organiser Ishay Carmon told The Extra: “The kids gave it their all, and were so good that they’ve now been invited to perform at the Glasgow Mela!

“In addition to the packed programme on stage, we held an art exhibition prepared by the school children, celebrating the Commonwealth Games arriving in Glasgow.”

The event — ran last year as a marathon relay for Busby pupils, parents and teachers — was open to the whole East Ren community following a funding grant from the Big Lottery’s Celebrate programme.

Ishay added: “We called the event Busby Does a Marathon - Going the Extra Mile to demonstrate the extra effort made by everyone at Busby to put this festival together in such a short period of time.

“We also made a special effort to invite the local Indian community to celebrate India being East Renfrewshire’s second team for the Commonwealth Games, and welcomed Mr Vishnu Kumar Sharma, a consul at the Indian embassy in Edinburgh.

“So many people volunteered their time to make this event happen and it demonstrates what a great place Busby is to live in.”