Braw Lads’ Gathering visits Torwoodlee and enjoys fun of fancy dress

editorial image

Braw Lads’ followers enjoyed another evening of entertainment with the fancy dress parade and a look back at its history with the rideout to Torwoodlee.

A cavalcade of 135 followed Braw Lad Daniel Whitehead and Braw Lass Lucy Black to the estate on the northern outskirts of Galashiels, and were welcomed by the Laird of Torwoodlee James Pringle and his family.

At the Old Tower, the Braw Lad digs up the sod while the Braw Lass receives the stone taken from the tower. Both play roles in the poignant Mixing of the Roses ceremony on Braw Lads’ Day.

In his speech, the Laird reflected on the importance of the Borders Railway to Galashiels’ future.

He said: “The railway will bring people to the Borders - younger people who will live and work here, who will spend money here and send their kids to school here and it will bring people who will come to enjoy all that we have to offer from our hospitality to our shops and our green and lovely land.

“It is up to us to make the most of the opportunity to benefit from the increase in footfall because the best of the Borders is the best in the world.

“It may take a wee while but, when the railway is up and running and the economy has started to recover from our spending spree, there will come a time when those who have the drive will start to see the potential and I would like to think that some of them might be Galaleans because it will be they who will allow Gala to thrive as the capital of the Borders.”

On their return, the mounted followers were joined by the Galashiels Ex-Service Pipe Band and fancy dress parade, which included homeages to Galashiels’ own Grand National winner Ryan Mania.