Counting down to festival

Morebattle Ride. 2013 Jethart Callant Gary Ramsay,
Morebattle Ride. 2013 Jethart Callant Gary Ramsay,
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Jethart Callant Garry Ramsay is counting down the days until Festival Day on Friday, July 12.

Not that he’s been idle since his declaration outside Jedburgh’s courtroom in May. The first official duty for the popular plumber was to switch on the revamped Jubilee Fountain in the town centre.

Jedburgh Callant Festival 2012. Provost Harvey Oliver helps the Lady Provost pin the rosette on the Jethart Flag.

Jedburgh Callant Festival 2012. Provost Harvey Oliver helps the Lady Provost pin the rosette on the Jethart Flag.

And since then he has been representing the Royal Burgh at other Borders towns and villages as well as fulfilling various responsibilities in the build-up to his own Jethart Callant’s Festival.

One of the first was a welcoming concert at Edgerston Village Hall where he was introduced to the delights of skiffle music by the Bogie’s Close Stompers – something that surely set him on his way for his big year.

He’s been at the Yetholm Festival and rode to Morebattle for the annual tryst with the Kelso Laddie, where a wreath was laid at the village war memorial.

Saturday saw the 23-year-old take the cavalcade to Southdean and this evening the riders head for Crailing and Nisbet.

Declaration in Jedburgh of Callant Garry Ramsay and New Herald Alan Learnmont.

Declaration in Jedburgh of Callant Garry Ramsay and New Herald Alan Learnmont.

On Saturday it is off through to the hills to the border at Redeswire, where the oration this year will be given by Hawick musician Alan Brydon. Monday sees the Callant following in the hoofprints of Mary, Queen of Scots on her legendary ride from Jedburgh to see her sick lover Bothwell at Hermitage Castle.

Lanton is the destination on Tuesday followed by Ancrum on Wednesday.

Garry will be installed as Callant on Thursday night when he receives the Jethart Flag from Provost Harvey Oliver in preparation for Festival Day on Friday.

On the night that he was confirmed as this year’s Callant Garry enthused: “Buzzing is the only word. I am so proud. I have wanted to do this all my life. I can’t wait.”

Garry will be supported by his Right and Left Handmen, close friends Iain Chisholm (Callant 2012) and Ryan Miller (Callant 2011).

And another close friend that will be by his side is local butcher Allan Learmonth in his first term as Herald, taking over from Gary Armstrong.

Allan commented: “I am humbled and privileged to be chosen to lead the cavalcade. It is a dream come true.”