Homecoming 2014 funding for Return to the Ridings

Duns Reivers Week
Duns Reivers Week

Return to the Ridings, which encourages people to come back to their Borders home town for the annual common ridings ,is £37,000 better off.

It is the first Borders event to receive funding from the £3 million fund Homecoming Scotland 2014 which aims to complement the Ryder Cup and Commonwealth Games in Scotland next year.

Details of more local funding will be released in the next phase of announcements in the coming months.

Councillor Stuart Bell, executive member for economic development at Scottish Borders Council, said: “Homecoming Scotland 2014 is the ideal time for everyone of Scottish descent to reconnect with their Scottish roots and join in the celebration of Scotland’s unique landscape and heritage.

“The common riding festivals provide a stunning spectacle unique to Scottish Borders life, and through Return to the Ridings we are extending a warm welcome for Scottish Borders descendants to return to their ancestral town, and for visitors to join us.

“Scottish Borders Council is co-ordinating a series of events in the region as part of the national Homecoming celebrations and we extend an open invitation to all to ‘come back to the Scottish Borders’.”

Homecoming Scotland has the potential to make a substantial impact on the country’s tourism industry and it is backed by a £1.75 million VisitScotland marketing campaign.

Paula McDonald, regional director of VisitScotland, said: “I’m delighted the funding of £37,000 has been confirmed and awarded to Return to the Ridings which is a key event in the Scottish Borders calendar.

“I’d like to encourage other events to join in the celebration by applying for the Homecoming Scotland 2014 Partner Programme to ensure a great spread of activity throughout the region so that every corner of the Scottish Borders is involved in the party.”

The Border common ridings and festivals first sent out Return to the Ridings invitations during Scotland’s Homecoming year in 2009.

An iconic image capturing the unique culture of eleven common riding and festivals was selected by the towns’ common ridings committees. Each postcard carried the invitation to ‘Come Home’. The reverse of each postcard carries the date of the common riding and festival with suggestions for the Borderer to ‘Invite your friends & family to the Ridings’. The recipient is encouraged to log on to the website www.returntotheridings.co.uk for full details of the events and information on how to book their trips Back to the Borders.