THERE was no horsing around last weekend as one of the Borders’ oldest festivals burst into life.

The traditional Whipman Festival Junior Rideout took place on Sunday.

And, like years gone by, huge crowds gathered across the village to watch Ryan Stewart and Gary Ross, Whipman for 2015 and 2016 respectively, along with 18 youngsters and four adult marshals ride to West Linton from Karecole Stables in Dolphinton.

The group started the ten-mile round trip at 10.30am, before stopping for lunch at the stables on Bogsbank Road at midday.

Following the pit stop for refreshments, the riders continued on to the village where they were greeted with a procession lead by the West Linton Pipe Band.

Villagers came along to watch the youngsters’ big moment to cross the river. 

Those racing were also cheered on by the crowds at the race field, before a walk back to the stables.

For Gary and his Lass Louise Ross, the event was their last official duty before passing on the honour on to the 2017 principals Rob and Becs Norris when the Whipman Week official kicks off in the village tonight.

Resilient Rob Norris will still play a part at this year’s Rideout on Saturday, despite suffering a double blow at the weekend.

Rob broke his collarbone at the Penicuik Rideout on Saturday, the same day he received the sad news that his father had passed away.

Despite being unable to ride a horse at the Adult Rideout tomorrow, Rob still intends to travel around the town. His mode of transport has yet to be confirmed.

The celebrations commence this evening with the float-judging on the Lower Green at 6.30pm, followed by the installation of Rob and Becs in the marquee at 7pm.

This year’s Whipman Elect and his Lass met shortly after Becs moved to West Linton with her two children in 2007, and they married in the village in 2013.

The pair have four children together, Andrew, Abigail, Connor and Lucy.

The Whipman Play Committee would like to thank everyone involved with the organising of Sunday’s event, the police, as well as the West Linton and District Band who, like previous years, provided great entertainment.

Coming up over the next week, the Children’s Fancy Dress will take place at 10.30am on Saturday, June 3, at the Lower Green, and on Sunday, June 4, the family cycle ride will leave from the health centre to the Deepsyke Forest at 10.30am.

Football, cycle and scooter events will take place on the Lower Green on Monday evening from 5.30pm, followed by adult bike events at 7.30pm.

On Tuesday, a Junior Disco will be held in the marquee between 6 and 9pm, and on Wednesday, cross country will take place at 6.30pm, with wheelbarrow races an hour later at 7.30pm.

A full list of the week’s events can be found in the Whipman Programme and at