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£2.45m for Abbotsford

10 May 2010

Culture Minister Fiona Hyslop today (Monday) announced funding of £2.45m for the home of Sir Walter Scott, Abbotsford.

Culture Minister Fiona Hyslop

The Minister said: “Abbotsford gives us a glimpse into what life was like for Sir Walter Scott, share the beautiful inspiration he enjoyed around him and learn more about a man who is invaluable to our literary heritage.

“Abbotsford’s attraction to Scott’s admirers’ draws people from across the globe to the Scottish Borders, which in turn generates the local economy and tourism.  Scott’s International reach for Scotland is enormous There are so many reasons to appreciate this incredible home and what it represents to the Borders and Scotland as a whole.”

The funding will allow for further repairs to the category A-listed building and provide improved facilities for visitors with a new visitor centre.


Scott’s writings played a key role in the international development of Romanticism.  Abbotsford House is seminal in being the first Scottish Baronial style house where a conscious effort was made to re-create an authentic Scottish castle and to achieve antiquarian correctness and its influence was of national and international importance.

The funding is made up of £1m from the Scottish Government; £800,000 from Historic Scotland and £650,000 from Scottish Enterprise.

Jim McFarlane, Managing Director of Operations for Scottish Enterprise said: "Abbotsford House is an iconic building within the Scottish Borders. The funding package that's been put together from all the agencies involved reflects the importance of Abbotsford both in terms of its historic importance and also its potential to enhance the region's tourism offering and develop the wider economy."

Sir Walter Scott purchased the farm and farmhouse known as Cartleyhole in 1811.  He changed the name to Abbotsford to commemorate the monks of Melrose who had owned the land and used the nearby river crossing.  
In 2009 Historic Scotland awarded £500,000 for repairs to the house. These continuing works will provide much scope for training in traditional skills development within the project.

David Parker, Leader of Scottish Borders Council, said: “We are delighted that this funding has been awarded to Abbotsford House. This means that vital repairs can be carried out and that the facilities for visitors can be developed to encourage more people to visit this historic site.”

Notes for editors

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For further information

Lesley Brown
Communications and Media Officer
Communications and Media
0131 668 8603 or 07920 768096