Flodden 500 plans are unveiled

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ORGANISERS have laid out provisional plans for marking the 500th anniversary of the Battle of Flodden next year.

Flodden 500 Association, with Selkirk Common Riding Trust and the Ex-Standard Bearers’ Association, have planned commemoration events over two weeks next September.

Flodden 500 Association chairman Jake Wheelans said the proposals were at the draft stage, adding: “Some events have yet to be confirmed and the final timescale will be published at a later date.” 
The main day of remembrance will see a mounted cavalcade ride Selkirk’s south marches, while a Flodden 500 walk from the battlefield to Selkirk will finish on Sunday, September 15. Both walkers and riders will then meet at Pringle Park where there will be events and music from the town’s Burgh, Pipe and Flute bands.

Organisers then hope walkers and riders will muster with local crafts, flags and townspeople before being led by Selkirk Flute Band to the Victoria Halls where Mr Wheelans and a child from Selkirk will lay a wreath in the new memorial garden. A reception will follow in the Victoria Halls.

The first event will be a two-day relay ride by Borders festival principals, starting at Coldstream and ending at Hawick on Friday, September 6, and going from Hawick to Selkirk the following morning.

Mr Wheelans said: “We are trying to organise for the ride to pass by the Victoria Hall in time for the opening ceremony of the Flodden 500 memorial garden. The garden will be officially opened by His Grace the Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry who kindly agreed to this as some of his ancestors were associated with the Battle of Flodden. His Grace will unveil a memorial plaque dedicated to the women and children who were left destitute after the tragic events on that fateful day in 1513. We intend to ask that our local Burgh, Pipe and Flute bands will be in attendance to make this a memorable occasion.”

A concert showcasing local talent in Victoria Halls will conclude the day.

Selkirk Royal and Ancient Burgh Ex-Standard Bearers’ Association are arranging a United Church Service in Selkirk Parish Church, followed by a torchlight procession, including local schoolchildren, culminating in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Fletcher monument on the Sunday (September 8).

On Monday, September 9, Selkirk Ex-Standard Bearers travel – as they do every year – to the Flodden Memorial at Branxton to meet with the Coldstream 1513 Club for their wreath-laying ceremony.

The Scottish Chamber Orchestra will perform a Flodden Requiem in Selkirk’s Victoria Halls on Saturday, September 14, before the riding of the marches the following day.

The final act of the commemorations will be a Flodden 2013 dinner on Friday, September 20, when it is proposed that Selkirk Royal and Ancient Ex-Standard Bearers’ Association will hand over to Selkirk Common Riding Trust a newly-commissioned Burgh flag.

Mr Wheelans said: “Flodden 500 Association will continue to collaborate with all associations in Selkirk to make this a memorable commemoration, but would like to thank Selkirk Common Riding Trust and Selkirk Royal and Ancient Burgh Ex-Standard Bearers’ Association for the assistance to date.”