Borders Walking Festival

The stunning Ettrick and Yarrow valleys will be explored during the 2019 Scottish Borders Walking Festival.
The stunning Ettrick and Yarrow valleys will be explored during the 2019 Scottish Borders Walking Festival.

Tickets for the 25th Scottish Borders Walking Festival, based in the Selkirk and Ettrick and Yarrow valleys, go on sale next week.

Scotland’s top outdoor writer and presenter of the BBC Adventure Show, Cameron McNeish, will be at the opening night celebrations, the festival taking place from September 7-14.

This year’s festival includes 28 guided countryside walks of varied lengths and challenge, taking in routes along the Southern Upland Way, the Grey Mare’s Tail Waterfall and the Ring o’ the Loch to the famous Three Brethren and many more.

There will be seven daily free and easy strolls led by local experts and enthusiasts, including a James Hogg Poetry walk in Ettrick, a stroll with a Bowhill Estate ranger and a tour of historic Ettrickbridge, led by village residents.

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The festival will also see presentations on photography by Selkirk Camera Club and local history and culture by groups such as Discover Scottish Borders, the theatrical ‘Dr John Muir’, Selkirk doctor at the turn of the century, a pub quiz and of course what Scottish festival would be complete without a ceilidh?

Keith Robeson, senior ranger at Scottish Borders Council, who has been involved since the very beginning, said: “The Borders really lends itself to walking and the festival moves around different towns every year, so gives walkers plenty variety, while being held in September gives us an excellent chance of good weather in Scotland.”

Sue Briggs, chair of the festival steering group, added: “We’re really lucky to have the Selkirk Farmers’ Market and the Yarrow Show on during our festival week and the town will also be decorated with weird and wonderful hats as part of the Souter Stormer Yarn Bombers HatFest competition – Border Bunnets.”

“It is going to be a brilliant atmosphere.”

The festival is supported by Scottish Borders Council, Live Borders, Selkirk Community Council and Ettrick and Yarrow Community Council.

Councillor Tom Miers, executive member for planning and environment, added: “Having started in 1995, it is testament to the various organisers of the Scottish Borders Walking Festival that it is still going strong.

“Selkirk and the surrounding Ettrick and Yarrow valleys have so much to offer in terms of not only scenery but history which will attract local people and visitors.”