Memorable event sees 400 people head to the hill in hunt for haggis

The Great Selkirk Haggis Hunt attracted more than 400 people to Selkirk Hill on Sunday, as the annual “cull” of the popular pudding took place.

It was a day filled with emotion, as for the first time, the hunters watched a new face address the haggis, the late Bob Burgess’ son Matthew.

Bob had recited the Rabbie Burns poem every year since the hunt’s inception 10 years ago, when the event was considerably smaller, with just a few locals from the Town Arms pub taking part.

When Bob, former deputy editor of this newspaper, died last year, the future of the event was brought into question, but the pub’s locals voted to keep it going.

And for Matthew, who instilledhis own brand of energy into the performance, while still keeping elements his dad was known for, it was a highly emotive day.

He said: “I’m very proud to have beeen asked to fill his shoes.

“The haggis hunt is an amazing community event and it was an incredible sight to look down the hill to see 400 hunters heading up armed to the teeth with nets, sticks and decoys.

“My dad would be over the moon that they asked me to take up a role at the event, and I thank everyone involved for making an emotional day very enjoyable.”

Organiser Davie Scott told us the day’s success was music to his ears.

He said: “This has been absolutely tremendous, it is so fantastic to see so many people up the hill enjoying themselves.

“I’ve just spoken to the counter, who said there is 400 people up here, as well as 40 dogs.”

Once back in town, the hunters retired to the comfort of the Town Arms fuction room for some refreshments and an afternoon of live music, and the promise of being able to do it all again next year.