The 1st of July Ceremony takes much time and effort. The foliage never stops growing and has to be trimmed back. Signs have to be erected and the site has to be kept clear of litter.
The day before the Ceremony sees much activity in getting the site perfect. To assist in keeping the area around the cross clear and to give wreath layers access to the cross, temporary cordons are erected.
To enable the congregation to hear the Ceremony a sound system has to be temporarily installed. Six microphones, twelve speakers, an amplifier and petrol driven electricity generator are all vital.
All the wreaths that are to be laid have specially printed labels attached. The petals for scattering into the Crater are placed into some 25 or so bags to enable petals to be offered to as many people as possible – in as short a time as possible.
From about 4.30am Friends of Lochnagar start to arrive at the Crater to put the finishing touches to the preparation.
The wreaths and gerbes are carefully placed in the order they are to be laid and a final check of the sound system is carried out.