End-of-year festival schedule announced

THE organisers of a local festival have announced their schedule for this year’s event.

A Hogmanay ceilidh will take centre stage at a five-day celebration entitled The Land The Light The Locals.

The festival begins on Saturday, December 29, with the main concert in Denholm Village Hall featuring one of Scotland’s top bands, The Old Blind Dogs. From their Aberdeenshire roots they have earned huge international acclaim, particularly in the USA, and it is a major coup for the festival to attract them to Denholm.

The following day, the first traditional music session will be held at The Gordon Arms Hotel in the Yarrow Valley with the irrepressible Shankend Mac hosting, then the evening event is a special Hawick Sings concert in the town’s Burns Club, where it is hoped a lot of money will be raised for local charities.

On December 31, it’s over to The Royal Hotel in Jedburgh for the afternoon session, followed by the Hogmanay Ceilidh through the bells at Denholm Primary School, with music provided by the very popular Jock Thompson Band.

On New Year’s Day, there is a walk organised for those needing to blow away the cobwebs, and then it’s off to Ashkirk Village Hall in the company of Selkirk’s own John Nichol and Hilary Bell who will be hosting a Herds’ Supper in their own very entertaining way. The day is finished off by a session at Denholm’s Fox and Hounds Inn.

The final day sees the farewell session held in the Denholm Meet, with a survivors’ concert by local favourites Real Time in The George and Abbotsford Hotel rounding off the festival.

Full details can be obtained from www.thelandthelightthelocals.com, or by calling 01450 870664. Tickets for the Saturday concert and the ceilidh are also available online at www.borderevents.com/boxoffice