This year’s Duns Summer Festival will see the crowning of the 70th Wynsome Mayde.
This event is steeped in history. Beyond the Hen Poo at Duns Castle there is a place known as Witches Knowe where, it is said, witches were burned many years ago.
To save a woman from this death the townspeople could choose if they wished to bring her to the town and crown her Wynsome Mayde o’ Dunse.
Going back over 60 years Duns had an Infirmary Week, a week of festivities and fundraising (for your bed in the infirmary if you ever needed one). In 1944, when victory in the Second World War was near, it was decided to once again crown a Wynsome Mayde as the festivial principal. The honour of becoming the first Wynsome Mayde fell to Nan Renton.
The setting up of the National Health Service after the war meant that infirmary fundraising was no longer needed and in 1949, the former Infirmary Week became known as Duns Summer Festival and a Reiver and Reiver’s Lass were appointed. Nan Renton, the town’s first Wynsome Mayde, later became the 1950 Reiver’s Lass. Eleven-year-old Shannon Bates will have the honour of being crowned the 70th Wynsome Mayde - her great great uncle Ted Bates took part in the first ever Wynsome Mayde! Shannon’s Court is as follows: Maydes of Honour - Isla Grieve, Jade Longstaff, Zara Todd, Kirsten Blair-Simpson.
Heralds - Aaron Lyall and Niamh Denpsey; Sword-bearer - Keiran Baxter; Crown-bearer - Fergus Murray; Courtiers - Finlay Redpath and Michael Liddington.
Pages - Mirren Clark, Nathan Burns, Ruby Gallacher and Jakob Robertson.
Flower-bearers - Amy Scott, Liam Dickson, Zara Chalmers-McKenzie, Rogan Glass, Lottie Redpath, Mirren Renton, Josie Bayles, Kaylen Martin, Chantelle Jeffrey, Abbey Rosher, Ellie Lyons, Melisa Leid-Smith, Shanna Lindsay, Chantelle Demarco, Jamie Renton, Kaitlyn Percival, Kirsten Bennett, Katie Buchan, Lucy MacDonald, Kieran Herbert.
This year’s Wynsome Mayde will be crowned by Mrs Nella Feeney. The crowning ceremony will again be held at Duns Castle on Monday evening at approximately 6pm. A courtesy bus will be available from the Market Square. In the event of bad weather the ceremomy will be staged in the Volunteer Hall.