The pages have brief notes on each location and where more information is available, there are links to longer pages on some of the places where appropriate. These main descriptions are all listed under the "Places to Visit" tab at the top of each Web page on this site.
Guidance on the roads on this Heritage Trail is highlighted on Bold/italic font.
NOTE: a growing number of the entries have a "Post Code" beside them - these are used by Sat-Nav software to supply routes to these locations.
A701 South from Edinburgh
Kirkcurd (Peebles) (EH46 7AH) Scotts in the Scottish Borders had strong links with Kirkurd. Sir Walter Scott of Rankilburn and Murthockston was the son of Robert Scott of Rankilburn and Murthockston. On 7 December 1389 he was granted charter of the territorial Barony of Kirkurd, by King Robert II.
Holy Cross Church (Peebles) ( EH45 8JJ) Burial ground of many of the early Scott chiefs. Six or seven lairds of Buccleuch are said to have been buried here.
Scotstoun Hall (Peebles) - owned by the Scotts even after they had largely moved to Hawick and Buccleuch
St Mary's Graveyard (Peebles)
Kirkhope tower (south and west of Peebles) Built in the 16th century, this square four-storey structure was once owned by the Scotts of Harden, including 'Auld Wat' of Harden. but burned by the Armstrongs in 1543. Acquired by the Buccleuchs in the early 18th century. The tower was abandoned in the 19th century, but was restored in 1996 by the architect France Smoor as a private residence.
(Side Trip to St Mary's Loch from Innerleithen further down this page)
Innerleithen to Galashiels
St Ronan's Wells - the spa became a location of a novel by Sir Walter Scott
Elibank Castle - a ruined 16th century tower which had a terraced garden and courtyard.Originally owned by the Liddles but passed to the Murrays of Glenpoit in 1594. Later, Sir Gideon Murray was chamberlain to Walter Scott of Buccleuch and received the lands in 1594. In 1611 he captured Walter Scott of Harden, a well-known Border reiver but offered him his life if Scott would marry Murray's daughter, Agnes (also known as "Muckle Mou'd Meg") rather than be hanged. Harden agreed and his son became Lord Elibank in 1643. The castle was a ruin by 1722. There is a wooden sculpture of Meg and Walter nearby.
Ashiesteel House - (TD1 3LJ) near Clovenfords was a home of Sir Walter Scott when he was Sheriff Depute of Selkirkshire. It had originally been an old Border tower, part of which is still enclosed in the centre of the house. It was here that Scott wrote the works that would bring him poetic fame, The Lay of the Last Minstrel, Marmion, and The Lady of the Lake. Ashestiel itself is immortalized in the letters to friends which preface each of the six cantos of Marmion.
Galashiels then follow Edinburgh to Hawick Page
Side Trip to St Mary's Loch from Innerleithen
Tushielaw Tower (North-east Ettrick) - 16th century tower house, built in 1507 by Adam Scott (known as "The King of the Borders"or "The King of Thieves"). Became a ruin in the 17th century and little remains.
Eldinhope Tower - property of the Scotts of Howpaslie in 1492 but passed to the Earl of Buccleuch in 1628. Only overgrown foundations survive.
Dryhope Tower - (TD7 5LF) This was a defensive tower in the valley of the Yarrow Water, owned by the Scotts of Dryhope. A daughter of the House, Mary Scott (known as the "Flower of Yarrow" was given in marriage to Wat Scott of Kirkhope, a notorious Border Reiver. The property passed to Wat Scott's family, the Scotts of Harden. In 1592, Wat Scott fell out of favour with King James VI and Dryhope was amongst Scott of Harden's properties that were destroyed. Rebuilt by 1613. it then fell into terminal decay in the latter part of the 17th century and was acquired by the senior branch of the Scotts, the Dukes of Buccleuch. In recent years it has been made safe and a new internal stair takes visitors to the top.
Tibbie Sheils Inn - (TD7 5LH) Takes its name from Isabella (Tibbie) Shiel who moved with her husbandinto what was then known as St. Mary’s cottage. After the death of her husband Tibbie was supported herself and six children by taking in gentlemen lodgers.
James Hogg ‘the Ettrick Shepherd’ was a regular visitor. James Hogg’s friend and contemporary, Sir Walter Scott, was another of Tibbie’s admirers and other names appearing in the visitor’s books (still existing) are Robert L. Stevenson, Thomas Carlyle, and UK Prime Minister Gladstone.
St Mary's Loch and Loch of Lowes - (TD7 5LH) The largest natural loch in the Scottish Borders is In the heart of the ancient Ettrick Forest, an ancient royal hunting ground which has strong connections with literary giants such as James Hogg and Walter Scott. There is a memorial statue to Hogg on the banks of Loch of Lowes
Return to Innerleithen or divert via A708 to Selkirk
Holy Cross Church, Peebles, burial place of many of the early chiefs of Clan Scott.
Graphic copyright Kevin Rae via Wikimedia Commons.