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VIDEO: Nets threat fishermen guide horses over Solway sands

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By Fiona Reid
Annan and Eskdale

TWO FISHERMEN, both experts on the treacherous Solway Firth, have played a special role on Annan Riding of the Marches Day for more than 30 years.

They have guided the large cavalcade of horses on a spectacular ride across the sands to inspect the Royal Burgh’s ancient boundaries.

However, a threat to the North Solway’s historic net fishing, blamed on an EU conservation directive, could mean an end to the fishing activities of George Willacy, MBE, and George Chalmers.

That would mean their daily monitoring of the shifting sandbanks, tides and channels would finish too and their expertise and equipment could be lost. It would be missed by local people and visitors.

So, on Riding of the Marches Day 2015, they were joined by many friends and supporters for what might be their last dawn trip by tractor and trailer out onto the Sands to guide the horses safely on their southern sojourn.

They were praised for their contribution down the decades and in the evening were presented with gifts in front of thousands of people attending a massed pipe bands event in Annan town centre.

In the spirit of the Riding of the Marches motto ‘Safe Oot, Safe In,’ the two Georges’ successfully completed their mission which features in these DnG24 video clips …

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