The Waterloo Monument, near Ancrum

10 fascinating facts about… the Borders

The Scottish Borders boast of their own unique identity, compared with the rest of Scotland and the north of England.

It is unlike its near neighbour, and is also unique to the rest of Scotland – it’s a fascinating area with a rich, long and proud history.

Here we present 10 fascinating facts on the Scottish Borders.

Thomas the Rhymer was a 13th-century laird born in Earlston, who, legend has it, was carried into Fairyland by the Queen of Elfland, who gave Thomas the gift of prophecy.

Edinā€™s Hall Broch, near Duns, is one of the few brochs found in southern Scotland.

The 212-mile coast-to-coast Southern Upland Way begins in Cockburnspath and finishes in Portpatrick.

The Borders is famous for its annual common ridings, where towns such as Hawick, Selkirk and Galashiels celebrate their history.

The Waterloo Monument, near Ancrum

The Waterloo Monument, near Ancrum, was last year briefly home to a 1500ft zip wire, the long est ever in the UK.

The fishing village of St Abbs is popular with scuba divers because of its crystal-clear waters. David Bellamy established the area as Britainā€™s first Voluntary Marine Reserve.

The word ā€˜dunceā€™ comes from the 13th century theologian Duns Scotus. His unorthodox thinking was rejected by the church, and his name became a synonym for ā€˜stupidā€™.

Dryburgh Abbey is the burial place of David Erskine, Earl of Buchan, Sir Walter Scott and Field Marshal Earl Haig.

The explorer Mungo Park was born near Selkirk in 1771.

The Siege of Roxburgh Castle, in 1313, was the first major conflict in the First War of Scottish Independence.