Earlston shrugs off rain

Earlston Fancy Dress.
Earlston Fancy Dress.

THE 39th Earlston Civic Week was very much a triumph of will over weather as locals turned out in their hundreds to enjoy a smorgasbord of exciting events.

Activities ranged from five-a-side football to the traditional White Hill and Black Hill Races.

Events kicked off with a well attended church service presided over by the Rev Julie Woods. Among other highlights were Wednesday’s quiz, in which 30 teams went head-to-head in the marquee, and the pet show on Tuesday, which this year included a snake and a bearded lizard.

About 200 people attended the bingo in the marquee on Thursday while the senior citizens’ afternoon tea at the rugby club on Friday saw its best ever attendance.

A fun-filled week climaxed with an action-packed day on Saturday and, despite a torrential downpour during the fancy dress parade, spirits were high as young and old turned out in spectacular costumes.

Civic Week vice-chair Pauline Gillan told TheSouthern: “People made a real effort and everyone thoroughly enjoyed it. Most were of the attitude that the rain only goes as far as your skin and managed to stick out most of the parade regardless.”

The afternoon children’s races and tug-o-war at the Haugh had to be cancelled but instead a huge kid’s party was held in the marquee which proved a big hit among the young and not so young alike.

Pauline added: “The weather certainly failed to dampen spirits.

“I must thank the members of the committee who pulled together admirably to make sure everything went with a swing and improvised brilliantly when the rain came down.

“It says a lot for the people of Earlston also that, in these difficult economic times, they can still turn out and support what is essentially their week. We have had some great feedback already regarding the various events that took place.

“Thanks also to all our sponsors and everyone who helped make the week such a brilliant success. We can now look forward to our 40th year with confidence.”

Thankfully the skies cleared for the concluding torchlight parade, in which more than 100 people processed to Haugh, led by pipers, for an eye-catching fireworks display.

“When you see the torchlight procession and everyone enjoying themselves so much it makes it all worthwhile,” added Pauline.

Earlston Civic Week Committee plans to add to the entertainment for next year’s milestone event and is appealing for volunteers to join the quest. Anyone interested should call Pauline on 07795 565958.