Time to make hay as Newcastleton basks in glorious festival sunshine

0
Have your say

Brilliant sunshine graced this year’s Newcastleton Music Festival which again featured sessions in hostelries, on the campsites and along the banks of the river.

There was hardly a spare spot to pitch a tent or park up a motor home or caravan, while hotels and B&Bs benefitted from the annual influx of music lovers.

Newcastleton Music Festival

Newcastleton Music Festival

And the Copshaw Common Riding on the Saturday has become an integral part of the weekend’s enjoyment.

The principal player here is the Tub – and this year it was daughter-of-the farm Gillian McGimpsey who was elected at a public ballot in May.

Gillian proudly donned the coveted maroon jacket and took custody for a day of the blue and silver flag emblazoned with the motto Pureous Bunkumos.

She had a following of 179 riders on bike, many dressed in the Common Riding colour of bright yellow. This is a common riding like no other, with fun very much the name of the game.

Newcastleton Music Festival

Newcastleton Music Festival

But, of course, this is first and foremost a music festival – and there was plenty of it.

Accordions, guitars, banjos , fiddles and bodhrans abounded and for those who like competitions there were those too, as well as a variety of workshops, and the opening and closing concerts.

There can be no doubt that the closure of the Royal British Legion a couple of years ago deprived the village of a popular venue, but the organisers have have done well in making use of venues that are available.

Festival goers now arrive as early as the Wednesday to capture a prime camping spot, with some staying until Tuesday, turning what had been a three-day festival into a holiday.

Newcastlon Tub

Newcastlon Tub

But for many in this farming community the welcome sunshine meant it was time to make hay, and for them the fun was cut short. It was truly a case of make hay while the sun shines, and that is what Tub Gillian was doing on Sunday afternoon.