A time for battles, music and food

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Hawick was alive with the sights, sounds and smells of the Border Reivers last weekend and organisers are hailing it one of the best festivals in the 12 year history of the event.

Hundreds of locals and visitors enjoyed a three-day trip back in time taking in a whole host of well run and entertaining performances.

This included popular drama sessions from local primary school kids in St Mary’s Church and The Heritage Hub which brought the Reivers to life.

Speaking this week, Cath Elliot-Walker told The Southern: “We had a great weekend and everyone really enjoyed themselves. We had positive comments all weekend.”

The packed programme kicked-off with the always brilliant Scocha concert in the Old Baths and it was, according to one reveller, “just fantastic and really set the standard for the weekend to follow.”

Centre stage on Saturday was the magnificent Reiver’s Parade along High Street. This was led by youngsters from the town’s primary schools – they looked amazing kitted out in costumes of the day. They ‘did battle’ in the Reiver’s Games in the Civic Space and were joined by Border Clansmen re-enactors whose display was breathtakingly awesome.

And topping off a wonderful parade was the Fifes and Drums and Les Amis D’Onno a Lanton based troupe whose wonderful horses and riders provided the crowds 
with some stunning equestrian skills.

The highlight of this year – and previous festivals – is the torchlight procession. Over 100 people braved the cool night to walk to from the Common Haugh to Wilton Lodge Park.

There young and old alike were enthralled by an explosive pyrotechnic extravaganza. One onlooker said: “That was excellent – the wee one enjoyed it. We’ve never joined the parade before but we will be back next year. That was fantastic.”

Local butcher Lindsay Grieve provided the fayre for the Reiver’s Banquet – diners joined the Baron Of Hawick and his family for the sumptuous feast which – keeping up with the tradition of the Reivers, included Scotch broth, roast beef and roasted vegetables with bread 
sauce served on a bread charger.

Mrs Elliot-Walker added: “This was a really good event. The food was fantastic and the bread chargers were really innovative and popular.”

Sunday’s events included a walk around Hawick Common with local historian Ian Landles.

He was joined by more than 20 walkers who enjoyed his wit and local knowledge.

This year’s festival was undoubtedly a resounding success and it’s great to see it growing on a yearly basis.

Anyone wishing to volunteer or get involved in next year’s event should contact Cath Elliot-Walker via the website hawickreivers.com