Copshaw Common Riding took place on the first Seterday of Julie and Mellissa again this year, and what a day it was.
Despite rain the day before and the day after, the big day had mostly blue skies throughout, again proving that the sun shines on the righteous!
Tub Irving, yes Tub and not Cornet as some stupid person called him, led his many followers around his boondaries in great fashion, ably supported by his Flake Fiona and his Fudge Jock, from the Hound trail in the morning until the handing in of the flag, he was a credit to the village.
The Hound trail very generously sponsored by Les (Wetherspoon) Calvert was won by Spring Dazzler and was caught over the line by the Tub, this is an ancient tradition that the Tub catches the trail winner every year, of course some Tubs are more nimble than others, but Pee Wee caught it eventually, rumours that it made it as far as the bank corner before being caught are unfounded.
We then had the crying of the fair (morning version) where this year's Tub's song was brilliantly performed by ex-Tub, Cuthbert (Neil variety), and was composed by our own version of John and Yoko, Ian and Lesley!
The winners of the best dressed competitions were judged by Margaret Imrie, with prizes from Margaret, and Costcutter, thanks to both, the winners were Michaela and Shane Richardson, and Christine Hinton (Adamson) and her friends, the Tub and his Flake chose the best dressed window which this year was won by the Butchers, a reluctant Pinner's came forward to accept the prize, but became not so reluctant when he saw the prize was a bottle of whisky!.
After receiving his flag, the Tub led the merry band up to the shed, to be entertained, the Tub's chase for the Mick Rick tankard, for the quickest rider from the square to the golf club was won for the third year running by Nige Fawkes, who then promptly retired citing his great age as the main reason.
This year's shed entertainment was quite honestly some of the best we have had in 17 years, songs from Selkirk, Langholm and beyond, Burns poetry, Rindacella, all manner of jokes, the various Tub's songs all played on the bag pipes by Karen Craig (Mabon) it really was a great year for the shed, if you have never been, you have to add it to your bucket list of things to do before you pop your clogs.
Then came one of the highlights of any Common Riding, that is any Common Riding not just Copshaw, and I have been to a lot of them, well I've been to Hawick and Langholm! The supping of the Tequila and snogging of the sod, the queue snaked all the way down the hill as the followers waited their turn with the sod, they were not to be disappointed with the recent rain providing a nice moist sod with a lush green topping, probably worthy of a Michelin star!
We then rode down to the Olive tree (Imries, Cowan's) where we helped celebrate the 10thanniversary of the Olive Tree being opened, and the traditional emblems were handed out to two common riding virgins, Louise Keeny all the way from the Muckle Toon (Muckle really?) and our very own Bomber, we really only use athletes for this job, is eating sausage rolls and athletic event? Probably!, thanks to Ann-Louise for her hospitality.
Old Erup Kubnum would have been proud that his Holm Brig / Toblerone architectural masterpiece was again remembered with the presentation of the Toblerone from ex-Tub McGimpsey to Tub Pee Wee and the offering of the whisky to the River Liddle.
We again celebrated the founders of the Common Riding with the Touching of the Cloth ceremony at Fred's corner, where the surviving original members looked back on that great battle, without which there would be no Common Riding and the Holm would be a poorer place for that!
Ex-Tub Cuthbert (Vicky variety) penned a new ancient poem from the steps of the old British Legion, a fine new ode to our great event,(will it still be the British Legion after September or will it be the Foreign Legion?)
Ex-Tub Cuthbert (Ryan variety) gave us his unique rendition of Twa Posh Chicken celebrating the birth of the Copshaw Kitchen and also Tub Pee Wee opened the new Copshaw Kitchen, this is the second time the Tub has opened the CK, thanks to Robin and Linda for their hospitality, we hope they have a long and prosperous reign.
The next boundary used to be Dykehead but since this boundary has been sold to add to his lordships millions, we use the auction mart, where this year we had the all new Crook and Clooties, penned by our good friends Mr and Mrs Curtis, who have been coming to Lidalia for 74 years, talking of Lidalia, Eddie once again surpassed himself with his hospitality providing drink, food and music for the Tub and all his followers, this is where we have the Hound of Lidalia and the Bridies from Brydon traditions, Bridie generously sponsored (and made) by Elliot's the Butchers (for all your meats and Treats!)
The afternoon continued with the Garden Party sports and entertainment, a special mention must go the two Rock UK folk who not only provided the bouncy playground but were also very helpful during the afternoon, we did get many sports in, but unfortunately the rain came before we could have our highlight the Egg Russian Roulette, well done to all the sports winners the prizes all very generously donated by Copshaw Catering (for all your catering needs including mobile hog roasts!)
Once again this year after the sports the committee were regally entertained by the Selkirk contingent, in fact the new Brig was almost christened, but that's another story!
The evening parade kicked off with the brilliant Jedburgh pipe band, led by pipe major and ex Tub Dr Christian from embarrassing bodies, we opened the Festival concert and we shook our shoulders in memory of Zamie Ak (he's back for next year!) and then we had the crying of the fair (evening version) followed by the Tub's address to the village, full of emotion (full of something!)
To Tub Pee Wee, congratulations you did a great job, from white settler to Tub in one fell swoop, and of course the Tub was the first bike rider to cross the new Whitaugh Brig.
To anyone that hasn't done the Copshaw Common Riding, please come, you will never know exactly what happens unless you are there!
Finally, we have to thank so many people who help us, both on the big day and throughout the year, Costcutter, The Butchers, The Olive Tree, Ann @ the Trap, Podge and Robert, Slippy, Copshaw Catering, Holm Hardware, the Ladies Committee, Lidalia, The Copshaw Kitchen, The Selkirk Common Riding, Waldorf and Stadler at the Golf Club,
Remember the CCR motto "If ye canna hae fun when your living, there's nae bloody chance when your deed!!