Oh yez, oh yez, Scott’s Selkirk is here to stay

The Royal and Ancient Burgh of Selkirk was a little more ancient than usual on Saturday as the town once again celebrated the days of it’s Shirra, Sir Walter Scott.

Tuesday, 8th October 2019, 4:34 pm
Town Crier Flora Colton, Sir Walter Scott, Provost Keith Miller and Maistress of Scott Selkirk Viv Ross.

The 20th annual Scott’s Selkirk event merged beautifully with the Selkirk Sessions weekend, as folk musicians, local bands and buskers filled the air with music to warm the soul on a rather dreich day.

One of the most popular items on offer is always the courtroom dramas, as a troupe of amateur local players played to packed crowds in the courtroom of the Shirra himself, played by John Nichol.

Robin Wilson of the Bogie's Close Stompers.

The plays this year were an old favourite, The Sabbath Breakers, and a brand new play, the Lady Varnishes, which “covered” just about every possible pun on varnishing a floor.

There was a changing of the guard as far as the Town Cryer goes, with young Flora Colton taking over the role, and keeping the public up to date with what’s going on.

Shopkeepers got in on the act, too, with the staff at Taylors the butchers getting dressed up for the occasion.

On the stages in the Market Place and the High Street, old favourites such as the Bogie’s Close Stompers, Carlenjig and the BB Band sharing the mic with the likes of Highline, a local young fiddling group.

Meg Dod’s Kitchen was a popular and welcome respite from some autumnal conditions, serving up traditional fare.

And further up the High Street, there were activities for the kids (and adults), a devilishly clever fortune-telling goat and there’s a chance you might have seen George Renton pedalling his penny farthing around.

As for the Selkirk Sessions, organiser Davie Scott told The Southern it had been a great weekend, with many musicians coming to stay and perform in the town over the course of the three days.

He said: “It was much better than I thought it might have been, especially given the weather. All of the establishments which took part – the Town Arms, the Fleece, the Bowling Club and the Tory Club – had music on offer on both the Friday and the Saturday, and everyone had a lovely celebration in the Tory Club on Sunday, where Shiela Sapkota and Dave Rodgers were rewarded for their winning buskering with chocolate oranges.”

He added: “I think the only thing stopping more people coming to play is the fact that it costs more than £60 to stay at the local camp site for the three days ... I think it would be better if we could talk Live Borders into a discount for performers in future.”