This month sees the commemoration of
two battles - the heavy defeat the Scots suffered at Flodden in 1513 and
the magnificent victory of Robert I at Bannockburn in 1314. Both
events will be celebrated out-of-doors and as June also has Mid-Summer
Day perhaps you would expect such events to be safe from inclement
weather. Obviously the burgeoning numbers of outdoor Scottish
events - galas, historical re-enactments, Highland Games etc expect so
but, as Markinch Highland Games found to its cost earlier this month,
even heavy rain the day before can lead to cancellation as the John
Dixon Park was left sodden and made unsuitable for the Sunday games
Today (17 June 2005) we hope the sun
shines on Europe's biggest equestrian gathering - The Selkirk Common
Riding. The streets of the Border town will ring to the hooves of
100's of horses as the town remembers the one Selkirk survivor from the
Battle of Flodden in 1513.
Sunday (19 June 2005) sees a massive
street party in Byres Road, Glasgow, as part of the popular West End
www.westendfestival.co.uk for full information including the Gibson
Street party on Sunday 26 June.
June also sees the annual
commemoration of the Battle of Bannockburn organised by the Scottish
National Party. The victory by Robert I has rung down the
centuries. The Scottish victory didn't end the long Wars of
Independence but was a turning-point in the Scottish struggle to be free
of English domination. In a David v Goliath contest, The Bruce
totally outmanoeuvred the far larger English invasion to ensure a
historic victory for the Scots.
The Rally will assemble at Lower
Bridge Street, Stirling, at 1.30 am and march off at 2pm behind the Vale
of Atholl Pipe Band. On arriving at the field of Bannockburn a
wreath will be laid at the Rotunda followed be speeches from Alex
Salmond MP and Stewart Hosie MP.
The Alan Macartney Memorial Lecture
will follow at 4pm in the Laing Robert Hotel which is beside the
National Trust for Scotland's Bannockburn Centre. The lecture will
be delivered by Oliver Brown Award winner Jimmy Reid.
Rounding off the day will be a Folk
Ceilidh in the Tartan Arms, Main Street, Bannockburn (doors open 5pm)
featuring the top Scottish folk duo Gaberlunzie and popular folk group
Cardies Brig. Tickets, £7, are available from Alistair Walker,
114 Davidson Street, Stirling, FK7 0NF (tel: 01786 814523).
We hope that the sun shines on all
outdoor events this summer and that they are rain-free, but regardless
of the weather this week's recipe, Wholemeal Scones, can be enjoyed at
any time of the year.
Ingredients: 150g self-raising flour, sifted; 100g
self-raising wholemeal flour; ½ tsp baking powder; 2 tsp
light muscovado sugar; 1 tbsp sunflower oil; 1 tbsp black
treacle; 175ml (approx) skimmed milk
Method: Combine the first four ingredients in a bowl and
stir in quarter of a teaspoon of salt. Make a well in the middle,
add the oil, treacle and enough milk to combine and make a soft dough.
Using floured hand, tip the dough on to a board dusted with wholemeal
flour. Pat out gently to a thickness of about 2.5cm/1in and cut
into six to eight scones.
Place these on an oiled baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven
(230°C/450°F/gas mark 8) for 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack