Visit Kelso and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Kelso, Scottish Borders. Situated on the rivers Tweed and Teviot, Kelso is a busy market town surrounded by parkland; it was described by Sir Walter Scott as the most beautiful, if not the most romantic, village in Scotland. In the Middle Ages Roxburgh was the royal burgh, but Kelso became prominent by virtue of the ford of the Tweed and by the bridge over it built in 1754; later, in 1800, a five-arch bridge was begun by John Rennie. This bridge took three years to build and was the model for Waterloo Bridge, London, built in 1811 and demolished amidst the lamentations of many Londoners in 1934. The square is spacious; it is dominated by the elegant town hall, which has a plaque by Polish Forces in gratitude for the town’s hospitality during the Second World War. Kelso has many fine houses including Ednam House; this was built in 1761 and, although now a hotel, the Italian ceilings have been preserved.
The greatest architectural attraction of Kelso are the ruins of Kelso Abbey, founded by David I in 1128 and destroyed by Hertford in 1545. This used to be regarded as the ruin of a small abbey, but investigations and a description dated 1517 in the Vatican Library now suggest that the remains are only the extreme West end of the largest and most imposing of Border abbeys. The building is of Norman-Transitional work, unique in Scotland, with a plan having western as well as eastern transepts and a tower over both crossings.
To the North West of the town is the magnificent Floors Castle, which has been described as the largest inhabited mansion in Britain; it was designed by Sir John Vanbrugh for the 1st Duke of Roxburghe in 1718, remodelled by Playfair in 1838—49. Golden gates and handsome lodges were added in 1929. French prisoners from the Napoleonic wars built part of a wall round the estate and also a theatre. There are extensive, very fine grounds and gardens, including a holly tree said to mark the spot where James II was killed by a bursting cannon at the siege of Roxburgh in 1460.
Nearby towns: Belford, Earlston, Greenlaw, Jedburgh, Melrose, Wooler
Nearby villages: Ancrum, Bamburgh, Carham, Coldstream, Denholm, Dryburgh, Kelso, Kirknewton, Kirk Yetholm, Newtown St. Boswells, Roxburgh, St Boswells, Stichill, Town Yetholm, Wark
Have you decided to visit Kelso or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Kelso bed and breakfast (a Kelso B&B or Kelso b and b)
- a Kelso guesthouse
- a Kelso hotel (or motel)
- a Kelso self-catering establishment, or
- other Kelso accommodation