Abbotsford Trust sends Scott on the road

Abbotsford in the Scottish BordersAbbotsford Trust sends Scott on the roadA hunting knife belonging to Bonnie Prince Charlie, King James VI’s hunting bottle with leather case and Sir Walter Scott’s top hat are just some of the items from the collections at Scott’s Abbotsford home in the Scottish Borders that will go on display as part of a special exhibition touring the Scottish Borders.

Scott on the Road comprises over 20 objects from the historic home which is currently closed while it undergoes a multi-million pound refurbishment.

The objects will tour three different Scottish Borders Council Museums & Galleries Service venues in Hawick, Selkirk and Innerleithen as part of a free exhibition.

The initiative aims to showcase to Borders residents and visitors to the region a sample of Scott’s collections and illustrate the historical and cultural significance of the novelist and his Scottish Borders home. The main house at Abbotsford will re-open to the public in 2013 and a new Visitor Centre is currently under construction and is scheduled to open later this Summer.

Other items on display as part of Scott on the Road will include Scott’s spectacles, walking cane, goose-feather quill pen and writing box as well as portraits of Scott, a miniature painting of Prince Charles Edward Stewart, the Montrose Sword, a pair of 18th century Scottish pistols and an iron thumbscrew.

Dr Sandra McNeil, Learning and Engagement Officer, The Abbotsford Trust said: “Abbotsford will re-open next year following vital restoration work, but while the doors are closed to visitors, we thought this would be an ideal opportunity to take some of the precious objects normally displayed in the house into the Borders community.

“It’s a small sample of the collections gathered by Scott together with some of his personal effects and brief background on his life, his Abbotsford home and his links to the Borders.  We hope it will provide a flavour of the fascinating attraction that Scott’s home and our new visitor centre will become once they are completed.”

Rosemary Hannay from Scottish Borders Council Museums Service said: “Scottish Borders Council Museums are delighted to host this fascinating touring exhibition which offers a unique insight into the contribution Scott has made to Borders life and culture.  Several of the museums which will host the exhibition have close links with Sir Walter Scott, both as a writer and as a local sheriff and we hope that both visitors and locals will take this opportunity to view some of the extraordinary collection held at Abbotsford.”

Scott on the Road will visit the following venues:

Borders Textile Towerhouse, Hawick (1 May – 17 June 2012
St Ronan’s Wells Visitor Centre, Innerleithen (25 June-26 August 2012)
Sir Walter Scott’s Courtroom, Selkirk (15 September-31 October 2012)

All of the objects displayed as part of Scott on the Road are normally on show at Abbotsford and will return to the attraction when it re-opens in 2013.

For more information on Abbotsford, visit


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