The Common Ridings and Festivals are hugely important to towns and villages across the Borders, pulling communities together, strengthening bonds between towns, and giving local businesses a valuable boost in the process. Our local press should be part of that camaraderie and should celebrate our region, rather than choosing to deliberately undermine our festivals with headlines such as the one you ran this week.

Lauder Common Riding, like all the Border festivals, is a time for celebration and, inevitably, some will choose to celebrate more boisterously than others. All factors should be considered for any licence application, and Councillor Greenwell is certainly entitled to voice his opinion, and of course the Border Telegraph is entitled to report on the Licensing Board meeting. However, choosing to lead with your 'War Zone’ headline, particularly during Lauder Common Riding week itself, was ill thought through and unhelpful at best - if not actually damaging to our festival.

We are, etc.

Ian Middlemiss, Chairman, Lauder Common Riding Committee Stewart Dick, Chairman, Lauder Ex Cornets Association