Jedburgh hosting annual hand ba’ game today

Jed Hand Ba in 2014.
Jed Hand Ba in 2014.

Uppies and doonies both young and old will take to the streets of Jedburgh for their traditional annual game of hand ba’ this afternoon.

The long-standing event, traditionally held on the first Thursday after Shrove Tuesday, starts at the Mercat Cross at noon with the throwing up of the first boys’ ba’.

The men’s ba’ will begin later at 2pm, and both games will run side by side until all the ba’s are hailed.

Jedburgh Grammar School pupils will enjoy a half-day holiday, finishing at lunchtime to allow them to take part and spectate.

Most of the town’s shops will remain open, albeit behind wooden barricades.

To score, the two sides have to hail the ba’ over their opponents’ goal. The doonies have to hail it over Jedburgh Castle jail’s wall, and the uppies will be out to roll the ba’ across the old bridge over the Skiprunning Burn.

Ancrum hand ba’ will be played on Saturday, March 4 with the boys’ ba’ starting at 11am and the mens’ at 1pm, both from the village green.

Next week, Denholm’s yearly hand ba’ game will follow on the village green on Monday, March 6, from around 4pm.

Look out for live coverage of today’s games on our Facebook page.

The boys' ba' in 2014.

The boys' ba' in 2014.