Flute band leads parade

The flute band leads the New Year's Day walk through the villages of Cairnbulg and Inverallochy.

The flute band leads the New Year's Day walk through the villages of Cairnbulg and Inverallochy.

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Villagers in Cairnbulg and Inverallochy braved the cold weather as they took part in the annual Temperance Walk which was held on January 2 this year.

The walk is traditionally held on New Year’s Day but is moved to the next day when January 1 falls on a Sunday.

The annual walk was first held back in 1842 in a bid to combat alcohol abuse.

When it was first held some 175 years ago members of the flute band, which led the procession, had to sign a temperance pledge.

Traditionally the oldest men of the village would lead the walk then there would be the band.

They would stop at the doors of the ill and the very old and play any request from the relatives. Once they were done they would head home for their festive dinner.

In recent years the parade has changed its emphasis from anti-alcohol to community spirit and is recognised as a celebration of the village itself.

Leading the parade once again this year was Inverallochy’s flute band.

For the first time in the parade they stopped briefly at the village’s fishermen’s memorial statue to pay tribute.

They played ‘Will Your Anchor Hold’ as they stood in front of the statue - which was erected in March last year - in a poignant tribute to those who have been lost at sea over the years.

Commenting on this year’s walk, Fraserburgh councillor Brian Topping said it was a ‘fantstic sign’ that traditions were not being lost in the north-east.