The 24 local sites of Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum

Together they piece together the wider story of the conflict, both past and present.

The Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum (go here for more info) is comprised of dozens of physical sites. These sites are dispersed across the United Kingdom. The sites are generally organized as either local or distant. There are 24 local sites and 8 distant sites. Below is the entire list with short blurbs on each site.

The sites

1. Flodden Field: The Battlefield itself, where it all began. The armies of James IV and the English Earl of Surry met here on the 9th of September 1513. Today there is a granite cross, erected in 1910, marking the field. A trail for visitation is available. Field and marker are pictured below. 

Image source: Paul Barlow via Wikimedia Commons

2. Abbotsford: Sir Walter Scott’s famous tragedy published in 1808, Marmion, had its dramatic ending on the battlefield of Flodden. This work has earned a special place in the history and culture of the Scottish Borders. The work was written at Ashiestiel, the country home that Scott rented near Selkirk in order to be Sheriff-Depute of Selkirkshire. Scott acquired the Abbotsford Estate in 1811 and built on the house for 14 years. It became the archetype for Scottish Baronial architecture throughout the world. Abbotsford house is pictured below.

Image source: Ad Meskens via Wikimedia Commons

3. Barmoor Castle: A common stopping point for English armies on their way to Scotland through the 1740s. The current gates were erected in 2010 to commemorate Barmoor as the site of the English Camp the night before the Battle. The gates are made of wrought iron and boasts the banners of the English Army, the Tudor Rose, and the main English weapons of 1513 (the bill, various swords, and the longbow and arrows).

4. Berwick upon Tweed: This was the staging post for troops before battle. Was also an important import port for supplies preparation. Soldiers were garrisoned here at the time of the Battle. The body of James IV was brought here for embalming before being buried further south.

5. Bolton Chapel: Earl of Surrey’s army mustered near here days before the battle. The Earl used the chapel for worship a number of times.

6. Branxton Church: The Church of St. Paul was originally built in medieval times but was rebuilt in 1849. It served as a temporary mortuary after the Battle and as a burial site for some casualties. The Chancel arch dates to the 12th century and is the earliest surviving element. The Church is pictured below. 

Image source: james denham via Wikimedia Commons

7. Coldstream: Two sites are located here, the Coldstream Museum and the ford at Tweed Green and the Cistercian Priory of Coldstream. The Cistercian Priory was founded in 1166 as a Nunnery and remained so until 1621. Fragments of stonework of the Priory are in the museum.

8. Ellemford: A common muster site for Scottish armies including James IV. It is a flat sheltered area that offers easy crossing of the river. Near the English Heritage car park there is a former chapel that houses a standing exhibition on Border Warfare and the Battle of Flodden. Cannon and infantry used the Etal Bridge during and after the Battle but only the foundations of the Bridge remain intact today.

9. Etal Castle: The Manners family manor was established in the 13th century. It was abandoned in the 15th century. Today the ruins are mostly the gatehouse and the keep. Pictured below. 

Image source: By Otter via Wikimedia Commons

10. Flodden Hill: The site of the Scottish camp before the battle.

11. Flodden Peace Centre: Opened in 2013, during the 500th anniversary of the Battle. The Crookham United Reformed Church, within walking distance of the battlefield, is the base for the Centre.

12. Ford: The closest chapel to the Scottish Camp. It is very likely King James IV attended Mass at the Church of St. Michael & All Angels. It was built during Norman times and extended in the 19th century by architect John Dobson of Newcastle. Ford Castle is pictured below. 

Image source: Andrew Curtis via Wikimedia Commons

13. Hawick and the Hornshole Monument: A year after the Battle, 1514, a skirmish between local youths and English soldiers unfolded. The local youth rode out from the town of Hawick to fight the English soldiers. This occurrence is celebrated annually in Hawick through ceremonies and the Common Riding. Today there is a memorial marking the occurrence near the bridge.

14. Heatherslaw Mill: The Mill has 1306 as the earliest dated reference. It is thought to have ground corn mostly uninterrupted for over 700 years. The Mill most likely provided flour to both armies during the Battle. The building seen today was constructed in the 1830s and is part of an industrial complex.

15. Hume Castle: Family seat of the Earl of Home at the time of the Battle. The castle acted as a muster point before the Battle. The castle has quite a long and bloody history. Albany decided Earl Home would be the scapegoat for the loss and waged a campaign against the Home family. Eventually, Earl Home was hung as a traitor for abandoning the battlefield. Hume Castle is pictured below. 

Image source: James Denham via Wikimedia Commons

16. Kelso: Kelso Abbey was where James IV was crowned in 1488. Some of the dead may have been returned here after the Battle.

17. Ladykirk Church: Originally named Our Lady Kirk of Steill. Built in the late 1490s on orders from King James IV. The church is a good architectural example of late Scottish Gothic. It is currently home to a bust of King James IV and one of the few stone roofed churches in Scotland. The Church is pictured below. 

Image source: James Denham via Wikimedia Commons

18. Norham Castle: Established by the Bishops of Durham in the early 12th century. Developed the still visible stone form during the subsequent 100 years. King James IV captured this castle shortly before the Battle. The castle was also fought over during the English Civil War and the War of the Roses. JMW Turner famously painted this castle.

19. Selkirk & the Fletcher Monument: Selkirk is a historic border town. Halliwell’s House Museum, located in the marketplace of Selkirk, has displays relating to the Battle and the border reviving. Two important artefacts are a sword and the Macclesfield Banner. The Fletcher Monument is a bronze statue of a man wearing armor (thought to be Fletcher) and carrying a banner. The statue was erected in 1913. It commemorated the lone survivor of 80 Selkirk men who went into battle. Fletcher is said to have returned with a banner captured from the English. The market place of Selkirk plays an important role during the Common Riding which is carried out annually. The Fletcher monument is pictured below. 

Image Copyright: Walter Baxter via Creative Commons

20. Swinton Kirk: The first written record of a kirk on the Berwickshire site is from 1098. The original building was stone and was built around a wooden Celtic church. It has since gone through many changes. The ‘Flodden Bell,’ which is one of the oldest in Scotland was rung to sound the death of so many men at the Battle. It has an inscription in Latin saying “Mary is my name, 1499.”  The Church is pictured below.  

Image source: James Denham via Wikimedia Commons

21. Traquair House: Scotland’s oldest inhabited house. It was originally a royal hunting lodge. The House has had over 27 Scottish monarch visitors as well as ties with Mary Queen of Scots and the Jacobite Uprisings. The House is pictured below. 

Image source: By Graham Laird via Wikimedia Commons

22. Twizel Bridge: The bridge was built in 1511 and was the only dry crossing of the River Till between the Tweed and Etal during the Battle. It is likely that both armies crossed this bridge. Accounts indicate that the English Vanguard including the English artillery crossed the River Till by way of Twizel Bridge on the morning of the Battle.

23. Wark Castle: Although very little remains today, it was a very important border castle during its time. Wark on Tweed is less than 4 miles south-west of Coldstream. Today it is a small village of just a few houses. The castle was built in the early 12th century. During the reign of Henry VIII an artillery fortress was constructed.

24. Weetwood Bridge: Thought to have been first constructed in the early 16th century to be a crossing point over the River Till. The bridge is on the route from Wooler Haugh where Surrey’s army camped.

A map with all ecomuseum sites listed is pictured below.

Image Source: Peter Davis   

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