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Bob Jarmson leads the way

Peebles West station 1948

Beryl Thompson takes the lead

 Dorothy Paterson first through the gate

Cross Manor Bridge

Carole Lough stepping out

 Steep steps up to railtrack.

Ladies on track

Lyne Station

Crossing Lyne Bridge over the Tweed

Back on to terra firma

Rosie the dog and friends go for a swim

Sponsored Walk  - Saturday 18 June 2016

Report - Jim Paterson. Photos - Dorothy & Jim Paterson

The St. Mungo's team ready to go
This year, we are returned to an old favourite; the figure-of-eight route from Peebles, via Manor Sware, across Kirkton Manor Road Tweed Bridge and along Tweed Walk (North Side) to Lyne Station, returning along Tweed Walk (South Side), re-crossing Tweed Bridge and back, past Neidpath Castle, along Tweed Walk (North Side), a total distance of approximately 7½ miles. Organiser Ian Dickson also included a 'short' route for those finding the full route just a bit too much.

We gathered outside St. Mungo's church on a dry, if rather cool summer morning, before jumping in a couple of cars to drive down to Peebles for the official start. There we met some other walkers from Roslin, who came along for the walk and to enjoy the fantastic Peebleshire countryside.

The sun had by now broken through, and with our backpacks donned we set off along the south side of the Tweed, under the Tweed Bridge, which dates back to the 15th century, though much improved since then.

The first stretch leaving Peebles was over the tracks of the Peebles, Broughton, Biggar, and Symington railway. The last train was in 1950, so we were too late to catch that one. However the path passes the site of the old terminus station, now residential housing.

We turned south, away from the river, by South Park Industrial Estate to reach open countryside where we again turned west. Crossing the fields we climbed towards Manor Sware, skirting South Park Wood. Stopping at the view point we were able to take in the outstanding views across the River Tweed, toward Broughton Heights, Manor Valley, and Dollar Law.

Downhill now toward Kirkton Manor, crossing the Manor Water bridge, built in 1702, meeting some fisherman getting their rods ready for a day on the river. Here we met the 'short walk' crews who had driven over from Peebles to join us. Together we crossed back over the River Tweed, being careful not to let Majorie's dog Rosie jump over the side (30 foot drop), as did her previous dog Murphy! We rejoined the Peebles Broughton railway track, long lifted and now a walker and cyclists track. Hugging the River Tweed the track heads for Lyne Station. An abrupt stop occurs just as you cross the Lyne Viaduct, crossing Lyne Water which flows down from Romano Bridge. We took this opportunity to stop for a bite of lunch, since the cast iron viaduct offers a great place to sit.

After lunch we headed through the beautiful Lyne Station village,
where we could see where the railway had progressed, and the old station building, now refurbished as a private dwelling. Passing a group of kyak enthusiasts getting ready to launch into the Tweed we crossed over the footbridge to the south side of the river, to start our return route to Peebles.

Climbing up the path to Kirkton Manor we came across Barns Tower, a peel-tower dating back to the late 16th
century. Built by William Burnet the 4th Laird of Barns and his wife Margaret Stewart of Shillinglaw - a family related to the Stuart earls of nearby Traquair. The tower is now a romantic cottage holiday let, popular with those seeking out the Peebleshire countryside, just like us.

We cut across the fields before reaching Kirkton Manor, returning downhill to the side of the River Tweed, this time on the south side, to reach the bridge where the 'short walk' crew, finished and drove back to Peebles. The more sprightly among us carried on over the bridge to rejoin the old railway line, this time heading east toward Neidpath Castle and Peebles.

The results of the floods over the winter were noticeable by the amount of river bank erosion and stone spoil deposits in the river, caused by the fast flowing waters at the time. We came off the railway trackbed just before the Neidpath Viaduct.

Designed by Robert Murray, a local architect living in Peebles, the viaduct is unusual, with all eight arches being semicircular, skewed and constructed with helical courses, crossing the Tweed obliquely with four of the piers in the water. The whole structure is built on a graceful curve of radius 440 yards (400 m) so as to align the route with nearby Neidpath Tunnel, at the eastern end of the viaduct and to the south of Neidpath Castle.

We were now on the last leg of our 7.5 mile walk, passing Neidpath Castle to reach Hay Lodge Park, crossing the footbridge to retrace our walk along the railway trackbed to the Tweed Bridge. At last we spotted the Heron that we had been on the lookout all the way alongside the river during our walk. Sitting majestic on the Cauld Water, ignoring the deep water signs to keep off. By the way Cauld refers not to the temperature, which I'm sure it was, but the Scots word for a Weir, in this case where Eddleston Water meets the River Tweed, over the weir heading towards the North Sea at Berwick-upon-Tweed.  .   

Our reunited party called in at the Leadburn Inn for well earned light refreshements on the way home to Penicuik. A great day out under blue sky and sunshine. Warm but not too hot for walking, with only the occasional attack from the dreaded midges.

The sponsored walk proceeds helps to fund the upkeep of our church buildings.

Lunch stop

Smiles all round at lunch

gosh its warm now

cooler under tree shade
Published 20 June 2016

Penicuik: St. Mungo's Parish Church (Church of Scotland). Scottish Charity No SC005838