Hexham flag tribute plans are unfurled

HAWICK Common-Riding Committee has announced plans to ensure as many Teries as possible are able to attend a historic ceremony in Hexham Abbey, as part of the Hornshole quincentenary celebrations.

For the past year, members of the committee have travelled to the Northumberland town to meet with Mayor Terry Robson and officials to organise the event which will take place on June 15, and is entitled ‘Capture of the Prior of Hexham’s Standard by the young men of Hawick’.

Commemorating when Hawick’s young callants captured the flag of Hexham Priory from the the band of raiders, it is expected that three buses will make the journey from Hawick. And Hawick Provost Stuart Marshall is anticipating a special day.

“It will be a very memorable occasion for those wishing to join us,” he stated. “It will be led by the Rev. Michael Jackson, and I am delighted that the sermon will be given by the Rt Revd Dr Angus Morrison, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

“The blessing will be conducted by Rev Frank White, Newcastle’s assistant bishop.”

The congregation will also hear readings from the Cornet, His Lass, the Mayor of Hexham and Provost Marshall. And after the service, the Cornet and his Lass will plant an oak tree in the grounds of the abbey, while a seat in the grounds will also be unveiled, both as gifts from Hawick.

The last visit to the abbey by a Hawick contingent was in 1972, when Provost David Atkinson, Cornet Philip Murray, Town Clerk Bill Hogg and Burgh Officer Bill Allan presented the flag carried by previous Cornet Drew Martin to the Rector of Hexham Abbey, in which it still hangs in the Nave North Aisle.

Provost Marshall added: “I felt that only a select few had the opportunity to visit the abbey all those years ago, and we should open this service of commemoration up to as many townsfolk as possible.

“It will not only bring our towns closer, but will serve as a poignant tribute to those who were involved in the event that took place at Hornshole some five centuries ago.”

Posters will soon be displayed with details.