There are many things which bind a community together, but nothing matches Linlithgow’s own ‘Riding of the Marches’.
The tradition goes back to the 14th century when King Robert II granted the town it’s Royal Burgh status and it’s a tradition which continues to the present day.
There are not many towns in Scotland which can boast such longevity of a custom enjoyed by the whole community.
The first Tuesday after the second Thursday in June is the day where the Burgh comes to a stop, shops shut, roads are closed, people return from the world over to their township - and all to celebrate Marches Day. It’s a revered day for some, not to be missed, hence the town crier’s warning that you should only do so under penalty of a fine of ‘one hundred pounds Scots’.
Tuesday 17th, saw one of the hottest days in the area, 26 degrees, testing even the most battle-hardened veterans of the event to their limits.
Unsurprisingly, most adopted a common sense approach and ensured they were kept well hydrated during the day although I’m yet to be convinced that whisky is the best way in which to do this - even with a drop o’ water in it!