An online Big House route through the Borders region

Manderston. House and terrace garden featuring yew and variegated holly topiary, roses etc
Manderston. House and terrace garden featuring yew and variegated holly topiary, roses etc

Eleven of the finest historic houses and castles in the Borders now feature in an online guide aimed at heritage enthusiasts.

The featured houses are: Mellerstain House & Gardens, Gordon; Manderston, Duns; Gunsgreen House, Eyemouth; Paxton House, Berwick-upon-Tweed; Thirlestane Castle, Lauder; Floors Castle, Kelso; Abbotsford, Melrose; Monteviot, Jedburgh; Neidpath Castle, Peebles; Traquair, Innerleithen; and Bowhill, Selkirk.

The painted suite of bedroom furniture is one of the key pieces in the Paxton House collection.

The painted suite of bedroom furniture is one of the key pieces in the Paxton House collection.

They are all part of the Big Houses in the Scottish Borders Group which jointly produced a leaflet last year and are following up its success with a new online map, highlighting the attractions of the Borders which will enable people to plan their tour, from west of Peebles to the east coast.

The online map is based on the leaflet version, which was designed by Galashiels graphic designer, Winnie Stewart, and illustrator, Diane Lumley, also from the Scottish Borders. It combines illustrations of the grand houses and castles with a custom scale map of the region, showing exact locations of each house, road numbers, the Borders railway and stations, cycle and footpaths and other places of interest.

It also includes links to each of the properties, for visitors to discover more about what each venue has to offer.

The Big Houses in the Scottish Borders is a non-profit organisation that was formed in 2012, to enable the visitor attractions to work collaboratively and share ideas, fundraising opportunities and marketing activity.

Helen Currie, chair of Big Houses in the Scottish Borders, said: “Following the success of our joint leaflet, which showcased our fantastic properties, we are delighted to now have it available online, making it easier for people to plan ahead.”

The online map is at: www.bighousesgroup.com.