Principals earn their spurs in gesture of friendship

GALASHIELS, UNITED KINGDOM - 20 May 2011: 'Braw Lads Gathering'Spurs Night''(Photo by Rob Gray / Freelance)
GALASHIELS, UNITED KINGDOM - 20 May 2011: 'Braw Lads Gathering'Spurs Night''(Photo by Rob Gray / Freelance)

THE historic links between Galashiels and Selkirk were celebrated on Friday, as the Braw Lad and Braw Lass greeted the Royal Burgh Standard Bearer at Galafoot.

Principals Lewis Playfair and Suzanne Henry watched as Standard Bearer Michael Craig forded the River Tweed, accompanied Burleymen Douglas Gunn and James Cheyne.

They then led a cavalcade of around 90 into the town centre, joined by the Galashiels Ex-Service Pipe Band at the Public Park.

At the Fountain, they were offered a stirrup cup by Jim Amos on behalf of Gala YM RFC.

And the party then headed to the town’s Royal British Legion, hosted by the Gala Souters’ Association, for the traditional Spurs Night dinner, chaired by George Emond.

In reply to the toast to the Royal and Ancient Burgh, and the ancient crafts, Selkirk Provost Les Millar said: “It could be said that Border rivalry is, to say the least, intense, sometimes verging on insanity, but when it comes to our common ridings and festivals there is a real sense of unity and tonight’s events are certainly proof of that.

“The meeting of both our town’s principals is not only symbolic of the camaraderie and friendship Borderers display at this time, it’s a true indication that in the weeks to come our towns’ elected principals will forge lifelong ties with their respective neighbouring peers as they meet to celebrate each others’ town events.

“Long may this unique bond prevail.”

Braw Lad Lewis said afterwards: “I really enjoyed the night and it was great to finally have my first rideout.”