People travelled from across the UK for the opening of the new Borders Railway, but some came from further afield.
Veteran royal watcher Margaret Kittle journeyed more than 4,000 miles from her home in Winona, in the Canadian province of Ontario to witness The Queen declare the new route officially open in a ceremony at Tweedbank last Wednesday.
Arriving early to bag a good front row position and with her huge Canadian flag draped over the barrier in front of her, retired nurse Margaret is no stranger to British royal and state events.
Her family travelled to London for Churchill’s funeral in 1965 and the 81-year-old pensioner also crossed the Atlantic to witness Margaret Thatcher’s funeral, as well as many other royal occasions.
Margaret has been hooked on the royal family since her parents took her to see King George VI and Queen Elizabeth when she was four and she has seen every wedding since that of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips in 1973.
Margaret told us she was delighted to be at Tweedbank for the event: “She is our anointed Queen of Canada and the Commonwealth, as well as Great Britain, and we love her.
“I’m looking forward to seeing her today immensely - that’s why I’m here. I came over on Friday from Canada especially for today and go home at the end of the week.
“I try to come over for all the great events and occasions of state. I’ve also been to the Borders before as well for royal events and like the area very much.”
And Margaret was pleased to see the opening of a new rail link for the region. “I think it’s fantastic and clearly a very popular decision going by all the people here to see it opened,” she added.
Margaret had joined a crowd of almost 4,000 which had gathered from early last Wednesday morning to witness the royal opening by The Queen on the same day she became Britain’s longest serving monarch.
Onlookers were joined by hundreds of journalists and other members of the media, with reports of the event beamed around the world to a global audience.
Scottish Borders Council Leader, Councillor David Parker said the new railway ensures the region’s numerous world class attractions are even more accessible to visitors. SBC Convener, Councillor Graham Garvie, added: “The Borders Railway is the most significant project for generations in our region and I am thrilled the people of the Borders turned out in their numbers to welcome The Queen to Tweedbank.”