On the 25th September, 1935 on a stormy night, a group of young men, with some of more advanced years, met in a loft in Hercus Loan used by the local Scout troop.
The Scout Hall, Hercus Loan
There were some still well recognised names among their number, George Colville, Bill Caird, Simon Clark, Alexander Maxwell and Malcolm Kirk to name a few. Success and enthusiasm created by the 1935 Riding of the Marches had kindled within them a local patriotism which they felt many other local inhabitants also possessed and which they wished to express through the medium of an annual Festival.
The idea of having an annual Festival, without infringing upon the ceremony of the Riding of the Marches, became an instantaneous success. There has since that time arisen a pride excelling all the dreams and hopes of those men who met in the loft all those years ago.
1936 Executive Committee
Miss Nessie Archibald, Alex MacDonald, David Wilson, Alex Maxwell, Thos. Mitchell, George McNair, Terence Shanley, Thomas Runciman, John Millar, Councillor T. White, Jas. Archibald, George M. Colville, Provost David Lowe, Alex. Davidson, Simon Clark, Arch. Sullivan
Constitution and Rules
1. That the Association be called the ‘Honest Toun’s Association’.
2. That the Association will be under the Patronage of the Provost, Magistrates and Town Council.
3. That the Association have one day annually for the Ride-out and Festival.
4. Members of the Association must be natives or Residenters within the Parish of Inveresk.
5. A fee of 2/6 to be charged for membership.
6. That the Honest Toun’s Association colours be Royal Blue and White, and that they be worn each year at the Festival and other Functions of the Association.
7. (a) That an Honest Lad and Lass be appointed each year, and that the appointment be approved by the Town Council.
(b) The Lad and Lass must be natives of the Burgh.
(c) Attendants will be appointed to the Lad and Lass, and the same rules apply to the Attendants as apply to the Lad and Lass.
8. For the choosing of the Lad and Lass the following procedure to be adopted:- Nominations to be received from members on Nomination forms. A short leet of 8 be drawn up (i.e., 4 Lads and 4 Lasses) by Committee and placed before the members at the General Meeting and voted on. The others defeated in the ballot will constitute the Attendants.
9. The Honest Lad must dress in the attire as constituted by the Committee, viz:- Top Hat, Swallow Tailed Riding Coat, White Vest, White Breeches and Black Boots, and his attendants be dressed similarly.
10. The Honest Lass will be attired in Top Hat, White Riding outfit and Black Boots, and her attendants in Black Velvet Hunting Caps, Dark Jacket, White Breeches and Black Boots.
11. The Lad and Lass will be invested with their Sashes the night before the Festival.
12. The Lad and Lass and retinue to be kirked at the Parish Church and lay a wreath at the War memorial after the morning service prior to the Festival. The Honest Lad and his Attendants will wear Morning Dress.