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St. Boswells Scotland

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Information on the village of St. Boswells in Scotland.

Boundaries of the Parish

The Parish of St Boswells is roughly 3 miles by 1 miles with the village situated in the north-eastern corner. The River Tweed forms the boundary from the foot of Newtown Glen to the Kelly Burn, which becomes the boundary as far as Hiltonshill Strip. The line continues along the disused Hawick Railway Line to a point south-west of Whinfield, where it turns north west and follows a straight line to Bowden Kirk road. There the boundary line turns east to follow the Newtown Burn past Maxpoffle, Whitelee, the Baillie Memorial Hall, and down the Glen to join the Tweed.

For many years the Holmes Burn was accepted as the boundary between the parishes of St Boswells and Melrose, and the lands of the Holmes, Whitelee and Newtown Mill were assessed and taxed in Melrose Parish. In 1868 this boundary line was in dispute, and was decided by an action in the Court of Session in 1870. The decision "on a question raised by the Common Agent in reference to the Parish Minister's Stipend" was in favour of St Boswells and "took from Melrose and added to St Boswells Parish the farms of Hawkslee, and Whitehill, the Holes and Newtown Mill, also 1000 yards oir therby of the North British Railway line".

That Newtown Burn had originally been the boundary is corroborated in Blau's Map of 1648, and by Stobie's "Map of Roxburghshire" of 1770. The Liber de Dryburgh also conatains repeated notices of the set of tiends of the lands on the south side of Newtown Burn, and it must be remembered that from 1161 St Bosells Parish belonged to the monks of Dryburgh.

In 1775, the year of the first census, there were 309 people living in the parish of St Boswells. By 1794, the number had increased to 500, with 300 of these living in the village of Lessudden.

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