Visit Galashiels and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Galashiels, Scottish Borders. Situated on both sides of the Gala Water, and pleasantly and spaciously laid out, Galashiels is a busy Border manufacturing town, noted especially for tweeds and woollen hosiery. Wool-mills were in existence here as long ago as 1622, but main developments came in the 19th century with the building of the first Scottish carding-machine nearby in 1790. The Scottish Woollen Technical College was founded here in 1909, and is the centre for wool studies in Scotland. Incidentally, the word “tweed” in connection with the wool industry has nothing to do with the river, for it is a misprint of the word “tweels” the Border name for woollen fabrics.
The mercat cross in the town dates from 1695. The war memorial comprises a fine statue of a mounted Border “Riever”, or moss-trooper, with the massive clock-tower behind, designed by Sir Robert Lorimer. The granting of a charter in 1599 is celebrated annually in the early summer with the “Braw Lads' Gathering”, in which a mounted procession goes to various parts of the district, including Abbotsford. The town crest can be seen on the North West fašade of the municipal buildings, and shows a fox trying to reach plums hanging on a tree, with the motto “Sour Plums”. This commemorates a Border foray of 1337, when some English soldiers were caught while picking wild plums, and were killed.
On the South side of the town is Old Gala House, a l5th-century mansion, now the headquarters of the Gala Art Club.
A short distance South East of the town on the Melrose road, near Langlee, is a tablet recording Sir Walter Scott's last journey to Abbotsford on his return from Italy in 1832, shortly before his death.
A little North West lies the fort and broch of Torwoodlea. The fort is a ruinous structure, measuring 450 ft by 350 ft inside. A broch was built on the inner rampart, probably after the Roman occupation ceased in A.D. 100; it was knocked down when the Romans returned in A.D. 140.
A stretch of the ancient earthwork known as the “Picts' Work Ditch” or the “Catrail” can be seen on the high ground to the West of the town. This dyke extended South over many miles; where it is now most distinct it is about 25 ft broad, with 12-ft-thick ramparts on each side standing 6 ft high, but it varies greatly, and there is no general agreement about its purpose. On the slopes of Buckholm Hill to the North of the town stands Old Buckholm Tower, now roofless.
About 2½ miles South of Galashiels are the striking remains of the Rink Fort. There appears to have been an early oval settlement, followed by a circular enclosure, 200 ft in diameter, formed by two concentric ramparts; there are ruins of a massive stone wall on the inside rampart.
Nearby towns: Earlston, Innerleithen, Melrose, Newkirk, Selkirk
Nearby villages: Ancrum, Ashkirk, Clovenfords, Dryburgh, Ettrickbridge, Gorebridge, Jedburgh, Lauder, Lilliesleaf, Newstead, Newtown St. Boswells, St Boswells, Stow, Tweedbank, Walkerburn
Have you decided to visit Galashiels or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Galashiels bed and breakfast (a Galashiels B&B or Galashiels b and b)
- a Galashiels guesthouse
- a Galashiels hotel (or motel)
- a Galashiels self-catering establishment, or
- other Galashiels accommodation