Committee modifies events for the Riding during Great War
Published at 01:00, Thursday, 26 July 2007
THREE years into the war, the Common Riding committee again decided not to convene a public meeting.
However, it was decided to hold a modified programme of events. The hound trail would be run at the usual place at 7 o'clock with four dogs and the other proceeding, the riding of the Marches, the Fair Crying and children's processions were fixed for 9 o'clock.
In his opening speech to the 1895 Cornet Robert Stewart, the Rev James Buchanan made comment that he was happy to present the Flag because it was the old flag that had braved 100 years. It would have been a grievous pity to allow 100 years of Common Riding – for such it was believed to be – to pass without any demonstration.
The Town Band was absent, probably because many of the band men had to work with the mills not being on holiday. So when the Barley Banna set off, the Pipe Band led the procession playing "My Nut Brown Maiden" round the Square Pump.
The children with their heather besoms, the Spade and Thistle (there was no Crown) joined in the procession, again led by the Pipe band. After the second Fair crying, the crowd in the Market Place broke into "Auld Lang Syne", in the absence of the Town Band, before heading down to the Kilngreen to watch the dozen or so riders have a quick gallop around the Castleholm.
The children still received their threepenny bits and then they all headed back to the Market Place where the Flag was returned into the safe keeping of Mr Buchanan.
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