Music festivals to entertain guests renting holiday houses in Northumberland and The Borders
When on a self-catering holiday or break in north Northumberland or the Borders areas, there are innumerable festivals that take place annually in the region. In particular, the Border towns all have their own unique historical gatherings and celebrations each year, generally in the summer months between June and August. Most include wonderful equine displays featuring the riding – hence the name – of hundreds of fine horses in celebration of times past.
The “Common Ridings”, as they are known, owe their origins to the upheaval in border lands during the 13th and 14th as a result of Scottish warmongering with England. Also thrown into the mix was the act of “reiving” (robbing!) through the tribal custom of plundering and stealing cattle. As a result, the border people would “ride” their horses out to protect their livestocks.
In some locations you may find that an entire fortnight of entertainment and ceremonies take place, coupled with rideouts, music and song, dance and traditional sports. In others, it will be a rather shorter couple of days. But regardless of the duration, they promise good spectacle, plenty of entertainment and a good time for everyone, regardless of their age.
Each town displays its own community pride with the “bussing” (tieing) of the Burgh Flag or Standard with ribbons by the “principal lass” to symbolise days of old when the local knight's lady attached her ribbon to his lance before he set off to battle. The “principal” men are themselves elected each year and given wonderful titles such as the Whipman, Cornet, Coldstreamer and more, and lead the following townspeople on horseback – and you as guests if you are with them at the time – in the festivities.
There are always social events connected with these festivals where good food and drink is guaranteed, together with entertainment for all the family. With some, do be prepared to really roll your sleeves up and get involved.
These wonderful events continue to help build a sense of community in Borders towns seldom seen elsewhere in the UK. Some of the Borders festivals held in connection with the Ridings include the Footsteps of the Reivers, the Clan Scott Gathering and the Festival of the Horse, amongst many others.
Holiday accommodation for families or groups of friends sleeping 6-22 + guests that you should consider if you want to visit music festivals
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