Poor weather just water off Kelso’s back

Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. The Kelso Laddie Phil Hume leads the cavalcade into Ednam on tuesday.
Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. The Kelso Laddie Phil Hume leads the cavalcade into Ednam on tuesday.

ORGANISERS of Kelso Civic Week may well be chanting “rain rain go away, come back another day – sometime, any time after civic week”, even in their sleep. But intermittent showers is not deterring Tweedsiders from enjoying the town’s annual celebrations, led by this year’s Kelso Laddie Phil Hume, writes Sally Gillespie.

One casualty of the weather was Saturday’s tennis tournament, but that’s been rescheduled for this evening and otherwise crowds are turning out in force to take part in the varied events.

Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. Billy Patterson welcomes the riders to Ednam.

Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. Billy Patterson welcomes the riders to Ednam.

Secretary Richie Allan said: “It’s going very well so far. The weather cleared up for family day on Sunday and it was fine right through.”

The civic week tennis challenge should have kicked off the festival, but instead the tournament – temporarily rechristened Have a ball before the Ball – will start at 6pm.

Despite Saturday’s weather, the senior five-a-side football went ahead and the eventual winners were Pathetic Ath. And the presentation night buffet and disco at Kelso rugby club attracted about 80 people.

Mr Allan said: “Numbers for the buffet and disco were average. It was a really good night and everybody enjoyed it.”

Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. Younsters during the sweetie scramble.

Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. Younsters during the sweetie scramble.

Sunday’s cycle race drew 33 entries for the 13.5-mile course. “Entries were up on last year. They were caught in the rain, but they just cycled on,” said Mr Allan.

Winner of the senior male category was T. Murray from Jedburgh. Jane Holmes from Selkirk won the senior women’s section while the veterans’ victor was Kenny Darling from Jedburgh. Triumphant in the Kelso category was Jeremy Smith.

The Aptek Kelso Crawlers 10k run saw a record 176 competitors complete the course through the grounds of Floors Castle in mainly dry conditions. First in the male open event was Bill Murphy from Harmeny Athletics Club. Jenny Close, formerly of Berwickshire, was leading female, while Willie Jarvie (Portobello) won the male veteran category. First female veteran home was Gala Harriers’ Gillian Duncan and the team prize went to Gala Harriers (full report on page 23).

On Sunday afternoon there was a good crowd for family day at Shedden Park, said Mr Allan, adding: “It was very successful and the weather kept up.”

Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. The principals and Jethart Callant dance the reel.

Kelso Civic Week ride to Stichill, Hume and Ednam. The principals and Jethart Callant dance the reel.

The putting competition was won by Calum Thomson while Broomlands Primary School triumphed in the youngsters’ ‘Kelso’s Got Talent’ competition. The Barca Boys lifted the under 11s’ five-a-side football title, but the under-14s event was not contested. Kelso Ladies Hockey Club won the tug-of-war and Kevin T. Richardson prevailed in the quoiting competition.

The Kirkin’ of the Kelso Laddie took place in the evening and the service was at St Mary’s Church. Earlier, Phil laid a wreath at the war memorial.

Monday saw the children’s pet show, judged by representatives from Merlin Veterinary Group in the Tait Hall. And there was a good response to the civic week exhibition of paintings by Borders artists in the Town House which was opened in the afternoon by Ex-Kelso Laddie Colin Henderson.

More than 60 riders followed the Kelso Laddie to Heiton on Monday when the prizewinner for the best turned out horse and rider was Emma Stenhouse.

Back at Springwood, Sophie Penman won the open seniors show jumping, Emma Stenhouse took the juniors title, while Katy McFadyen triumphed in the under-10s. The Kelso Laddie took top honours in the gymkhana’s open seniors category, Louise Hebdon won the juniors, Duncan McFadyen the confined category and Hamish Stenhouse the nine-and-under section.

The dance in Heiton village hall was a sellout.

On Tuesday, 131 riders followed the Laddie to Stichill, Hume and Ednam and the prize for the best turned out horse and rider went to Ex-Kelso Laddie Steven Dickson.

Mr Allan said: “We are hoping for the weather to get better and be good for the highlights of the week –the bussing ceremony (last night) and the big rideout and fancy dress on Saturday when hopefully there will be a good parade.”

Yesterday, Met Office forecasters were predicting a more settled spell from today with sunshine on Saturday.