Souters in the saddle to mark Lauder’s big day

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Selkirk turned out in force to support Langholm Common Riding on Saturday.

There has been a long-time affinity between the two royal burghs – Souters provided guidance and advice when the Lauder festivities were re-born in 1911 after some years in abeyance.

Lauder Cornet Craig Connell had a mounted following of 315 during the morning.

Selkirk’s horse-and-rider contingent was led by Royal Burgh Standard Bearer Greg MacDougall and three of his Attendants. The host of foot followers included Honorary Provost David Anderson.

And providing the music once again was Selkirk Silver Band which this year had a guest bass drummer in former Galashiels Braw Lad Greg Borthwick, who was deputising for John Nichol.

And there was joy for young Ailish Fairbairn from Selkirk – proudly wearing her two common riding rosettes – who was awarded the cup for the best- dressed rider.

It was an early start for the Silver Band – but, of course, they’re used to that – leading the 7am Cornets’ Walk before sounding a welcoming fanfare for Cornet Connell an hour later.

Then it was round the burgh at the head of the cavalcade for the musicians, leading the riders to the golf course for the gallop.

They were there to welcome him back from the marches and play the haunting “Liltin’” at the service of remembrance held at the war memorial.

Lauder worthy Adrian Gryczka led the band on its rounds, this year carrying an engraved walking stick presented to him by the Incorporation of Fleshers at their foy.

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