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The Royal Caledonian Ball is widely believed to be the oldest charity ball in the world.

Part of the particular appeal of the Ball is that everyone attending is wearing traditional formal evening dress. The dress requirements are stated below in summary and in detail. Please note that the Committee reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone not correctly dressed.

Gentlemen taking part in the set reels must wear Highland evening dress or mess kit, tail coats only if part of mess dress, and ladies must wear clan sashes. If you are unsure about any aspect of the dress code, please contact the Secretary. For more information about the dinner served at the Ball, please scroll down.



Highland evening dress comprising kilt and sporran, evening jacket of black broadcloth or coloured velvet, white evening shirt and black bow tie or lace jabot, or

Evening dress, comprising black evening tail coat, white shirt with wing collar, white bow tie and white waistcoat, or

Mess dress, worn according to regulations, with, preferably, where permitted, any more formal variation such as stiff shirt, wing collar and black bow tie.

Trews only acceptable when worn as part of military uniform. No dinner jackets. Jackets must be kept on while on the dance floor. Black dress shoes; no trainers.


Encouraged for those entitled to wear them:

Orders and Decorations



Floor length evening dress (N.B.: skirts should reach below the ankle; no high-low hems, bare midriffs or slits above the knee), or

Mess dress worn according to regulations with full length skirt. 

Formal heels or flat shoes suitable for dancing; no trainers. Gloves not required.

Encouraged for those entitled to wear them:


Clan tartan sashes

Orders and Decorations



Prior to the dancing, a sparkling reception and three course dinner are available at 86 Park Lane (part of Grosvenor House). The menu for 2022 is as follows:


Sloe gin Scottish salmon, avocado mousse, green apple and radish, yoghurt and Keta caviar


Scotch beef Wellington, baby carrots, leaf spinach, potato gratin, Madeira truffle jus


Gingerbread, caramel ganache and Suffolk cider jelly, almonds and whipped clotted cream

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