Melrosian Ben proving a worthy leader of town’s big week

Melrosian Ben Magowan leads the Melrosian's rideout on Monday evening.
Melrosian Ben Magowan leads the Melrosian's rideout on Monday evening.

A huge cavalcade of 200 riders followed this year’s Melrosian Ben Magowan on the festival’s annual rideout on Monday evening.

The sun shone for both the rideout and Tuesday night’s very well supported fancy dress competition and parade. Tonight sees the annual bike ride through Newstead and Darnick, leaving Gibson Park at 6.30pm.

The celebrations continue with the installation of the Melrosian and the crowning of the festival queen tonight. The ceremonies begin at 7pm in the abbey grounds. or in the parish church if wet.

Tomorrow the Melrosian will conclude the week’s visits to care homes, schools, nurseries and hospitals.

The festival concludes on Saturday. A tour of ceremonies begins in Market Square at 8.50am, with visits to Newstead, Trimontium, Gattonside, Abbotsford, Darnick Tower and then the abbey.

At 2.30pm, sports start in Gibson Park. Melrose Pipe Band will play in Market Square at 7pm, before a dinner in the rugby club at 8pm.