Historic stone now fit for a fairy queen

Melrose Community Councillor Val Miller at the Rhymer's Stone.
Melrose Community Councillor Val Miller at the Rhymer's Stone.

One of the Borders’ best viewpoints has been given a clean-up, thanks to its links to one of the region’s most mysterious legendary characters.

The Rhymer’s Stone – erected in 1929 by the Melrose Literary Society and later moved a short distance to a viewpoint at the foot of the Eildon Hills by the town’s community council – was looking a bit worse for wear but Borders College students have now given it a facelift.

Melrose community councillor Val Miller said: “It’s been 20 years since we created the viewpoint, and it was looking bit tired, so we decided it needed a bit of a tidy-up and rejuvenation.

“We’ve cut the hedge, engaged a contractor to power-hose the stone and laid new gravel, and the students have done a great job rebuilding the small wall as a project and they have also repointed the cobbles in the path.”

The viewpoint is said to mark the site of the Eildon Tree, where Thomas the Rhymer – born Thomas Learmont – supposedly met the queen of the fairies, but it’s his links to a nearby town that brought about the clean-up.

Val explained: “There is going to be a visit by an Earlston walking group which is organising a ramble at the beginning of October, so we really wanted it looking as good as it could be as there are going to be people coming from far and wide into the area to see it.”