COPSHAW COMMON RIDING 2012.
The 2012 Common Riding took place on the last Seterday afore the first Seterday in Julie and Melissa, which is a departure from the usual date because of the Olympics (or was it because it was a leap year?) and this meant that this year's Hound Trail will now be run the day after the Holm Show, I hope you are following this, because I'm confused!
Tub Jackson led his followers roon oor boondaries with great pride and did himself and the Holm proud, even if he did have a pit stop during the day, the rain that fell in the morning did not deter the loyal riders with 116 turning out, this is proof that the Copshaw Common Riding is firmly fixed in the social calendar now, much like Royal Ascot or Wimbledon, your social standing is enhanced by following the Tub.
The day started with the presentations of best dressed riders and best shop window these were won by Skye and Kyle Atkinson, Hazel Jeffrey with her kids Callum and Hannah, and by Lumsdens Newsagents, Young Spannerface then sang the Tubs song for 2012, and we were off for a great day once more.
The Tubs chase to the golf club was won this year by Nige Fawkes, who won in a record time of 4 minutes 63 seconds, and celebrated with a drink from the Mick Rick tankard, a very appropriate celebration, the Tub was then entertained royally by his followers, with songs and jokes, none of which can be repeated here, and ex Hawick Cornet Greg McLeod gave us his own unique brand of entertainment again I can't really explain what happened as I couldn't look! Peter and Campbell took time off from promoting the latest Muppet movie to serve the thirsty followers and great thanks is due to the Golf Club once again for hosting us on both Common Riding day and for the Bike Clip Doo.
On then to the Byers monument for the eagerly awaited and traditional snogging of the sod and supping of the Tequila, this year's sod was much moister than previous sods because of the inclement weather we have been having, but this did not detract from its unique flavour in fact it probably made it nicer, although official sod bearer Scooter Hay did say it was a heavier than usual sod.
This year we were to be honoured with riding behind the official Olympic torch, which was carried with great panache by Libby Kennedy, we followed the torch to the Olive Tree, where the Common Riding emblems of the kipper and Barley fadge were paraded in front of a massive crowd, Common Riding Virgins, Carolyn Cuthbert and Ralph Hedley were chosen as this year's emblem carriers, and a grand job they did too, in fact for the first time in living memory the kipper made it through the day!
The man with the non politically correct nickname, so I can't use it in the Clatter, but if you add the letters ch to inky, you will know who I mean, gave us the Toblerone and Whiskey ceremony, commemorating Erup Knubum, the designer of both the Toblerone bar and the steps in the middle of the Holm Brig, then we were off to our official watering hole of the Trap for a brief drink, before continuing with the boundary checking.
Next stop was Fred's corner, for anyone new to the village that doesn't know where this is, it is at Fred's corner, there the original remaining members of the very first common riding took part in the Touching of the Cloth ceremony in memory of the battle of the aforementioned Fred's corner, and so to the Gilly Fraser speech celebrating the history of a TV legend and Author of many romantic novels including her latest Fifty Shades of Copshaw, this used to take place in the Legion doorway but now takes places at the Copshaw Kitchen along with the twa chickens (you couldn't make it up) due to the sad demise of the Legion.
Dykehead is the next stop on the journey and hosts Jo and Jock, treated us in the usual manner, with the much needed sustenance of bacon rolls and the not so much needed drink or two! Up at Dykehead the bridies from Brydon celebrates the attempt by Brydon Mabon to stop the last train coming through the village, this train was carrying bridies from Bridekirk hence the ceremony and thanks to Pinner's at the butchers for a grand bridie this year.
Mr Ed at Lydalia then treated us royally to a drink and a wee song, before the Hound of Lydalia, which was written by a couple of visitors to the site, obviously attuned to the strange world of Copshaw Common Riding!
The Garden Party this year was held in mostly dry weather with a variety of sports only seen once a year, and which produced some record breaking performances, this year's chicken was tossed 37 metres, or over 40 yards if you had Bill Fleeting as a teacher! And the egg Russian roulette this year featured actual hard boiled eggs.
The day ended with the Jed Pipe Band with Pipe Major Pee Wee Irving, leading the followers to the village hall to open the Festival concert, shake the shoulders and see the Tub hand in the flag after a great and emotional day, the Tub has had to follow in some big footsteps and he pulled it off in style well done BJ.
The Common Riding wouldn't exist without a lot of support from a lot of people, on the day itself and through the year at various events. We have raised thousands of pounds for local causes and it's mainly down to Copshaw's ain folk.
Many thanks to Margaret Imrie, The Festival committee, The Golf Club, Jo and Jock Atkinson, Phillip and Helen Jane, Costcutters, The Olive Tree, The Butchers, The Copshaw Kitchen, Eddie Rutherford, The Polysport, The Hot Dog and Bar Ladies (superb again) Babs and anyone with a bucket at night and if I have missed anyone sorry.
Finally thanks to the committee, it's not easy at times and it's a good job we all like each other!! The common riding is in good hands with that lot and roll on 2013.
Git in, Git oot.