More Tweed valley agriculture punctuated by the Coldstream Common ridings and Flodden Day. As part of Coldstream Civic Week Coldstream Rider’s Association arrange four ride-outs the largest of which is to Flodden field with more than 300 riders taking part.
Common Ridings can be traced back to the 13th and 14th centuries when the border lands were in constant upheaval during the long wars with England and because of the tribal custom of plunder and cattle thieving, known as reiving that was commonplace amongst the major Borders families. In such lawless times, townspeople would ride their boundaries, or ‘marches’, to protect their common lands and prevent encroachment by neighbouring landlords. Long after they ceased to be essential, the ridings continued in commemoration of local legend, history and tradition.
The Flodden rideout is perhaps the most significant as the Battlefield of Flodden is where the armies of James IV of Scotland and the Earl of Surrey, met on 9th September 1513. The battle occurred on the slopes of Branxton Hill, starting late in the afternoon and lasting for 3 hours. By nightfall James, most of his nobles and perhaps 10,000 of his countrymen lay dead. Today the battlefield is marked by a granite cross, erected in 1910, and a battlefield trail created and maintained by the Remembering Flodden Project.