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Arts and crafts in Scottish Borders

Scottish Borders is in Scotland. It has a population of around 114,000 and covers approximately 473,000 hectares. Here is a list of nearby or neighbouring counties: Cumbria, Dumfries and Galloway, East Lothian, Edinburgh, Midlothian, Northumberland, South Lanarkshire, West Lothian.

The mainly rural Scottish Borders is administered from the village of Newtown St Boswells. The region was formed in 1975, when a number of historic counties were merged and it has been called Scottish Borders since 1996. During the Roman period the famous Ninth Legion was said to have marched into the area and vanished, prompting some believe the construction of Hadrians Wall. Over the centuries the area was the scene of a number of conflicts, reflected in the many fortified towers and castles that were built. Traquair House is thought to have the longest record of human habitation of any house in Scotland. The earliest parts of the house were built during the 15th century and it stands on the site of an earlier hunting lodge dating back to the 12th century, which was used by Scottish kings and queens. The House is now open to the public and hosts a number of social and cultural events, including a literary festival, Medieval pageant and the popular Traquair Fair. Within the house visitors can see paintings, furniture and decor from various periods. The museum has exhibits including Jacobean glass, early printed and illuminated books, embroidery and items from the life of Mary Queen of Scots. In the surrounding grounds, there is a community of craft workers, craft workshops and some craft shops.

Other historic buildings in the Scottish Borders include Abbotsford House, which was once the home of the famous Scottish Romantic writer Sir Walter Scott, who had the house built on the banks of the River Tweed in the early 19th century. Floors Castle is a country house, built during the 1720s and among the richly decorated and furnished rooms are paintings, tapestries and porcelain. Paxton House was built during the 18th century and has a collection which includes Chippendale furniture and a gallery of paintings on loan from the National Galleries of Scotland. Set among picturesque parkland, the house is used as a venue for events including music recitals and art exhibitions and runs a range of educational programmes and activities. Opened in 1866 in the town of Innerleithen, Robert Smails Printing Works is now an industrial heritage museum. The printing process uses Victorian era technology and enables visitors to learn how stationery and other such printed goods were once produced. The Borders Textile Towerhouse in Hawick has a collection of mill machinery, fabrics, clothing and archival material showing the areas historic importance to textile arts and crafts, as well as looking to the future. The skills of local textile workers have long been employed by some of the worlds famous fashion houses and talented local designers are being inspired to create contemporary fashions.

James Augustus Henry Murray

(Born 1837 in Denholm in Scottish Borders), Nonfiction

Murray was the editor of the Oxford English Dictionary between 1879 and his death in 1915. It is interesting to note that he left school at 14 because his parents could not afford the school feel.

James Hogg

(Born 1770 in Selkirk in Scottish Borders), Fiction, Poetry

Writing both in English and Scots, Hogg wrote poetry, short stories, satirical sermons, essays and an unautorised biography of Sir Walter Scott.