Kicking off Lanimer Week with a Kirkin’

Lord Cornet-elect...Gordon Gray with his wife Karen and daughters Erin and Emma. Gordon will be kirked at noon on Sunday. (Picture Sarah Peters.)
Lord Cornet-elect...Gordon Gray with his wife Karen and daughters Erin and Emma. Gordon will be kirked at noon on Sunday. (Picture Sarah Peters.)

THE bunting is up, the Lanimer court dresses are in the shop windows, and Lanark’s annual celebrations are ready to start this Sunday with the Kirkin’ of the Lord Cornet-elect Gordon Gray.

Escorted by former Cornets, and various dignitaries, Gordon will be piped down the High Street and into St Nicholas Church for the ecumenical service at noon.

It is just a wee taste of what awaits him on Monday, when townspeople pile in behind the Cornet-elect and his party for the Perambulation of the Marches.

That is reputed to date from 1140 with the granting of a charter to the Royal Burgh of Lanark said to include a condition that the boundaries, or marchstones are checked each year. There is no proof of this, but for centuries Lanark has picked a Standard Bearer to carry out this task, and townspeople in their thousands have supported him.

Gordon (36) whose father Leonard, uncle Ian, and grandfather Robert Barr were all Lord Cornets in their day, will lead the Perambulation from Hope Street at 6pm sharp on Monday.

Once the March stones there have been checked, the Cornets’ party will mount up, at the top of St Leonard Street, and a procession of riders and pipe bands will make its way to the Cross, about 8.15pm, for the Sashing of the New Cornet. David Murdoch, Lord Cornet 2014, will return the Burgh Standard “unsullied and unstained” and it will be shifted to Gordon who will be sashed by Eleanor McLean.

Tuesday sees the Ride-Out, leaving Delves Park at 4.30pm, and stopping at Lanark Racecourse around 6.40pm for the races, and again at 8pm at New Lanark where the village present a loving cup to Lanimer Queen-elect Jenna Bruce.