This year’s Borders Heritage Festival takes place from September 6-21 under the theme of ‘Our Dynamic Border’.
The focus for 2014 will be local heritage that tells a story about the defence of the Scottish Borders and the movement of its peoples to and from England and Scotland.
The festival will provide an interesting mix of exhibitions that demonstrate the movement of Scottish people as a result of the First World War, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the start of the war.
Other exhibitions show the reach of Scottish heritage through the textile industry and artworks that illustrate where our small borders have stretched across the world.
Also on offer is an illustrated presentation at Old Melrose, St Cuthbert’s first monastic home, a talk on the influence of Flodden on the people of the Borders and the opportunity to spend the day with the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (Scotland) carrying out repairs to both Hobkirk Parish Church and Souden Kirk.
Guided tours are being provided around historic Kelso as well as Roxburgh Castle and Abbotsford House. For the more energetic, a series of walks along the Berwickshire Coastal Path have been planned, giving walkers the opportunity to experience the stunning east coast scenery to be found between Berwick, Burnmouth, St Abbs, Dowlaw and Cockburnspath.
One of the events highlighting the historical links between Scotland and England is planned for St Cuthbert’s Day (4 September) when beacons will be lit on Inner Farne and St Abb’s Head. National Trust for Scotland archaeologist, Dr Daniel Rhodes will lead a walk on Lindisfarne to view both beacons.
Dr Chris Bowles, Scottish Borders Council’s archaeologist explained: “Each heritage festival has a given theme and this year it was decided to showcase the varied and unique heritage that we are privileged to have here in the Borders.
“From hill forts to castles, and abbeys to weaving mills, the festival is an opportunity to celebrate our shared and unique past.”