Riders follow Hawick Cornet Gareth to Roberton and Lilliesleaf

Cornet Gareth Renwick passing St Andrews Care Home.
Cornet Gareth Renwick passing St Andrews Care Home.

The annual rideout to Roberton has always been a highlight of the Hawick Common Riding for Gareth Renwick.

And Saturday’s visit topped all those before for the 22-year-old as he led the cavalcade there for the first time as this year’s Hawick Cornet.

Blessed with glorious weather once again, Gareth was delighted with how Saturday’s rideout, his third at the helm, went. He said: “It was a cracking day for it, especially on the way there.

“It was roasting, which just always makes the day better.

“Even when we got to Roberton, everybody usually has the windbreakers up and the tents to shelter in, but it was so warm everyone was mingling together, which was nice to see.

“After a visit to field-owner Jock Thomson, we had time to blether, and it was good having the time to get round and speak to everyone out supporting.

Roughly 160 riders followed behind Gareth as he led the cavalcade across the hilly route, including Langholm Cornet Iain Little, who had been announced only the night before.

“My two brothers and three cousins were all riding too, and it’s the first time we’ve all followed together since 2014, so that was particularly special for my grandparents,” Gareth added.

A further 60-odd riders took part in Tuesday’s ride to Lilliesleaf where the fine weather continued.

“It a nice wee ride for the young ones, and we had a lot of ponies following too, which is great as it’s the young ones who are the future of the common riding,” Gareth said.

“This year, we had a field, which meant that all the horses and cars and the beer tent were in the same place, which worked really well.

“The rain came on just as we started the sing-song in the tent, so everyone piled in, and that really added to the atmosphere.”

Gareth and his henchmen enjoyed refreshment at the Jammie Coo, where they were also able to celebrate his younger brother Fraser’s 21st birthday.

Tonight, schoolchildren will perform at the 1514 concert, and tomorrow around 60 youngsters will take part in a junior ride leaving the Common Haugh at 6.30pm.

Come Saturday, Gareth will lead a cavalcade to Philhope Bridge, leaving Backdamgate at 12.30pm and arriving at Philhope Bridge at 3.30pm. The riders head back at 5.30pm, returning to Tower Knowe at 8pm.

Tuesday’s ride to Priesthaugh leaves Backdamgate at 2pm, arriving at 4pm. Riders leave again at 6pm and will return at 8pm.