FUNDING of £19.2k will be sought next week to send a party of 40 people from Hawick across to France on a ‘trip if a lifetime’ to mark the 50th anniversary of a town twinning project.

It is now half a century since Hawick was twinned with the French town of Bailleul.

Hawick Ex-Service Association, which plays a pivotal role in supporting veterans, has submitted an application for funding to the town’s Common Good Fund Sub-Committee which will be considered at a meeting on Tuesday (May 23).

A spokesperson said: “We would like to take 40 people from Hawick to visit Bailleul from October 7-12, 2023, leaving on October 6 and returning on October 13.

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“The trip would take part in activities in Bailluel to the celebrate our twinning and also make trips of military interest from the First World War and where possible visit cemetery’s where local Hawick soldiers are interred.

“The funding would be used to offset the cost of travel and accommodation and would therefore allow the opportunity of those who would not otherwise afford the cost as many are older and or on low incomes.

“The project will allow those who may never have had the opportunity to partake in a trip in their lifetime and will be a lifetime experience for them.”

In the past the service association has organised a town twinning event in Bailluel and a parade to install two benches and the planting of two trees at the Boer War Memorial in Hawick Park and the installation of a bench at Douglas Haig Court Care Home to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.