Lighting up the Scottish Borders

Lighting up the Scottish BordersIn Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, the Scottish Borders Heritage Festival in September is set to be the biggest yet.

The festival will run throughout the whole of September and will celebrate spectacular heritage sites through light, music, storytelling, re-enactment, theatre and performance.

In addition to walks, talks and exhibitions, the festival will be hosting new highlight events in castles, tower houses and abbeys, bringing the unique and colourful history of the Scottish Borders alive.

The exciting programme for 2017 includes four new creative commissions that will take place each weekend across the regions: Lighting the Borders, Sounding out the Past, Where Teviot Rins, and Illuminating the Past. The full programme is available on the new festival website –

The opening event, ‘Lighting the Borders’, which specifically celebrates Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017, will see over 25 historic locations illuminated with light, story and song from 1-3 September.

Sites taking part include Hume Castle, Peniel Heugh, Smailholm Tower, Fatlips Castle, Eyemouth Fort and Neidpath Castle.

Working in partnership with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and students from Selkirk and Galashiels primary schools, three historic houses (Aikwood Tower, Bowhill House and Abbotsford House) are the setting and inspiration for ‘Sounding out the Past’.  

‘Illuminating the Past’ will see two medieval and early music performances at Melrose and Dryburgh Abbeys incorporating the celebrated ‘Hawick Missal Fragment’.

‘Where Teviot Rins’ will be a bespoke performance presented in the Wilton Lodge Park walled garden in Hawick, celebrating the rich life and history of the River Teviot in story and song.  

A heritage seminar that explores the myths and legends of the Scottish Borders takes place at the Heart of Hawick on 16 September.

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