Hand Ba' in the Borders

The annual tradition of Hand Ba' , a medieval game, takes place in Jedburgh.

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Let the games begin

Competitors chasing the Ba' Credit: ITV Border

The game of Hand Ba' specifically for younger men is now underway in Jedburgh.

The main event will take place at 2pm.

Boys chasing the Ba' Credit: ITV Border
The hand ba', with the ribbons representing locks of hair Credit: ITV Border

Shops batten down the hatches for Hand Ba'

Shops and houses board up their windows to prevent damage, and the game can go up alleyways, into yards and up streets.

Traditionally, the first ever game was played with an Englishman's head. The ribbons on it symbolise his hair.

There are two games, one for young men, which starts at 12pm, and the second is the adult game, starting at 2pm, which can last for several hours.

The game is always played on the Thursday after shrove Tuesday, or the week after, depending on when the first new moon falls after Candlemas.

Are you an uppie or a doonie?

The annual tradition of Hand Ba' will take place in Jedburgh this afternoon.

The game, which dates back to 1914, is based on a version of medieval football.

It was once played all over Scotland, but today Jedburgh is one of only a few towns that keep up the tradition.

Two parts of the town, known as the uppies and the doonies, depending on where players were born, have to get the ball to their respective side.

To do this, the ball must be manhandled, often in a moving scrum.

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