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Golden gig for Gretna’s ‘Runaways’

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By Fiona Reid
Annan and Eskdale
Golden gig for Gretna's 'Runaways'

LEGENDARY border country and western duo, The Runaways, are this weekend celebrating their 50th year in show business.

Husband and wife team Pam and Phil Bayne  pictured above – took their name from the young runaway couples, who crossed the border to wed at a lower age, in the couple’s home town of Gretna.

The musicians formed their enduring partnership in 1966 and two years later were married themselves.

Since then music, romance and weddings have been part of their everyday life and they have remained a fixture on the club and wider entertainment scene on both sides of the border.

They also presented a BBC Radio Cumbria country music show for a number of years and have been wedding photographers and videographers at Gretna for the last 35 years.

Runaways

As part of their golden celebrations, The Runaways, who appeared recently on Irish TV, have released a new CD, which features their favourite songs from over the last five decades.

“We’ve enjoyed every minute and music has always remained our passion down the years,” reflected Pam, as the duo posed for a photograph at a Gretna Green sign this week.

Before they both burst into song, slightly muffled by nearby traffic noise, Phil added: “Yes, it’s been fun. We’re still performing and writing songs and plan to continue to do so as long as our audiences want us to.”

The couple throw the same enthusiasm into their weddings business.

Said Pam: “We’ve watched the number of weddings staged at Gretna and Gretna Green grow from 266 a year up to 5556 in recent years.

“We’ve made so many friends and couples still come back to reaffirm their vows. It’s lovely.”

Their entertainment highlights have included being in the line-up at gigs at the London Palladium and Wembley, signing a recording contract with Lismor Records and the release of their best known album ‘Border Country.’

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A music video they made recently has been featuring regularly on the Phil Mack International Country Show on satellite TV.

The Runaways 50th anniversary and their wedding role feature on ITV Border (Scotland) at 8 pm on Monday, May 16,  on the popular ‘Border Life’ magazine programme.

Said Pam: “We spent a day filming with Fiona Armstrong and her fantastic cameraman Paul, who put us completely at ease. We feel so lucky to still be entertaining people and also being part of so many people’s big day.”

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