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Selkirk & the Scottish Borders

On the face of it Selkirk might appear a sleepy little town but in fact there is a lot going on under the surface! Selkirk, for example, boasts a magnificent brass band


The Scottish Borders

One of the good features of he Borders is that distances are relatively low between towns and locations of interest. For example take a day trip to Bamburgh and visit the ancient “Babbenburg Castle”, famed from its historical presence in The Last Kingdom. What about a trip to Roslyn Chapel and discover some of the facts about the knights templar who came to Scotland in 1307 to escape King Philip le Bel of France and the Pope. Engage in more active pursuits like cycling, walking and rambling.

The Borders seems a long way north but a place not so far! Go to Edinburgh for a day out – just an hour by train.


Experience our Hotel’s History & Heritage



The Beauty of Historic Selkirk

Selkirk is one of the oldest royal burghs with a history dating back to before the 12th century. The town name derives from old Scots words meaning “the church in the forest” In this instance the forest is Ettrick Forest once used as a royal hunting ground for Scottish kings.

Selkirk became the centre of national attention in William Wallace’s struggle to win independence from England in the 13th century and it was in Ettrick Forest that he was declared Guardian of the Kingdom of Scotland in 1297 after his victory at the Battle of Stirling Bridge.

The burgh sent 80 soldiers to support King James at the Battle of Flodden in 1513. Sadly only one man returned wearing a blood-soaked English flag  and he too then collapsed and died. The Flodden Flag can be seen in Halliwell’s museum.

Selkirk however became best known as a centre for making shoes.  Natives of Selkirk are known as “Souters”, another word for a cobbler.

Just 4 miles from Selkirk is the Bowhill Estate and one of Scotland’s great stately homes, and known today as a centre for gun sports.

Sir Walter Scott, well known as an author was in fact Sheriff of Selkirkshire for nearly 30 years and his courtroom is still preserved today.

Just a mile or so from the Philipburn is the Philiphaugh Estate where salmon can be seen making their way up river to the spawning grounds. Watching them jump is an amazing sight.