Eskdale: Not just Beatties and Littles

Samye Ling Tibetan Monastery, Eskdalemuir Eskdale in Dumfriesshire is to some, a rather out of the way, insignificant place. However, it’s contribution to humanity has certainly been impressive ; the birthplace of Scots language poet and co-founder of the Scottish National Party Hugh MacDiarmid; the birthplace of arguably Britain’s greatest ever civil engineer Thomas Telford; […]

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Hot Trod into Liddesdale

Here’s a tale that’s got pretty much all the elements which made the Border Reivers so infamous in the 16th century. Cross-border cattle stealing in Northumberland by classic reiver names, hot trod, and an end in Liddesdale where murder and revenge are cruelly meted out. Lonely Pundershaw farm today deep in the heart of Kielder […]

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Buccleuch Estate Maps

Relatively Scottish has always been very interested in the family histories of those who lived on the Buccleuch Estates sometime in the last 300 years. I think that old maps are an important means of helping to understand the lives of our ancestors. Those of you with an interest in historical maps of the Buccleuch/Queensberry […]

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What’s in a name ?

Emily Atack was the latest celebrity to feature on the BBC’s Who Do You Think You Are programme this week.  It was very interesting to hear the revelation that her relative Sir Paul McCartney could easily have been known as Sir Paul McCarthy if his Irish ancestor’s name had not been misheard by an official […]

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Gone but not forgotten

From time to time, I find that my clients in USA, Canada or Australia had ancestors who lived in miners’ rows in Ayrshire or Midlothian. Understandably, they often plan to come back to Scotland to see where their ancestors lived. But I often have to tell them that they’ll find little or no evidence of […]

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Eskdalemuir Roots of an Empire

General Sir Charles William Pasley (1780 – 1861) was a distinguished British soldier and military engineer. He had a brilliant mind and his writings are generally considered to have influenced the development of the British Empire. He was fundamental in setting up the Royal Engineers regiment. He was born in Eskdalemuir in Dumfriesshire on 8th […]

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Clackmannan to the Borders

Today we tend to think of mainly rural areas like the Scottish Borders as areas that have suffered from depopulation as people have moved out to find suitable employment. It’s not somewhere that you’d choose to find lots of skilled jobs and good prospects. However, one hundred and fifty years ago, things were very different. […]

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