Kirk Yetholm, and its half mile distant twin village of Town Yetholm are seperated by the Bowmont River. They sit on the edge of the stunning Cheviot Hills and are a couple of miles from the English border and the Northumberland National Park. The countryside looks dramatic through all seasons. Yetholm has, at times been a busy industrial town (wool looms in the 18th Century), the seat of the “King of the Gypsies” of Scotland (end of the 19th Century), but is now a quiet, pretty village situated at the end of the Pennine Way. As befits its position, Yetholm also stands on St Cuthbert’s Way (walk from Melrose to Lindesfarne) Yetholm is popular with walkers, with a number of walks for all abilities over the Cheviots or in the Bowmont valley.
The whole of the North Northumberland and the Scottish Borders are there to be enjoyed and explored on beautiful empty roads (barring a bit of agricultural traffic.)
The Scottish Borders have a wide range of countryside, from the dramatic hills, to the rolling fields, and a number of small towns, all with their own long histories. Kelso and Jedburgh are the two nearest to Yetholm. Kelso probably being the prettiest of all the borders towns, with it’s almost gallic cobbled town square, ruined abbey, and impressive bridge across the River Tweed. In fact, most of the towns have an abbey round here and you can’t usually go too far without finding a ruined castle telling of the history of any number of battles between the Scots and the English (Flodden is nearby), or the Borderers themselves (The Reivers). A lot of this history is still relived today by the “Common Ridings” which each town (Kelso, Hawick, Jedburgh, Melrose, Selkirk are the largest, some of the smaller towns and villagers have their own, including Yetholm.) celebrates each year with “ride outs” to reaffirm borders between towns and countries. One of the largest being from Kelso to Yetholm, when (literally) hundreds of horses and riders descend on Yetholm from Kelso led by the Kelso Laddie and his men. Most weeks during the summer one of the local towns will be holding its ride outs and visitors (spectator or rider) are very welcome. You can even hire your horse!
Horses are popular in the Borders, and there are lots of places for you to hire a horse for a trek or hack, but if you wish just to see them race then Kelso has a pretty racecourse with National Hunt racing (Race fixtures here.)
The Borders is world renowned for its fishing with some of the worlds best salmon and trout fishing all within a short distance. Permits, lessons by international fishermen and ghillies all easily organised. Shooting (clays or others) and hunting are all available virtually on our doorstep.
Other, non-animal related, pastimes that are popular include golf (Roxburgh Golf Course is 7 miles away, fifth best inland course in the country) and (Hirsel, “Augusta of the North” according to Golf World!)
And if you need a bit more of a cosmopolitan day, then Edinburgh and Newcastle are only an hour away north and south respectively.
Links to relevant websites are included here.
(Photo “Kirk Yetholm circa 1920 taken from www.scottishgypsies.co.uk, a mine of information on the gypsies of Yetholm.)