Maxton Scotland
The Parish Web Site - Scottish Borders




Littledean Tower

Littledean Tower

Littledean Tower, situated near Ploughlands, was formerly a very important defended house, for many years the home of the Kers of Littledean, a branch of the Kers of Cessford. Built in the late 15th century, it is of unique design, using the fact that it has the Tweed on one side to create the design. The folklore of the Parish contains stories which are linked to Littledean and its none too pleasant occupiers of the past. Today, the ruins are rapidly crumbling as the weather does its worst. For many years, it was recorded as the birthplace of Duns Scotus, but it has only recently been proved that the evidence for this was an elaborate forgery.

Ploughlands, on whose land lie the quarries from which came the stone for the building of Melrose Abbey, is close to Littledean. The quarries remained in use until the early part of the 20th century. Today the quarries are abandoned and are being infilled with building waste.

Ringley Hall, tho' just beyond the Parish boundary to the east, is closely linked with Rutherford. It is the remains of an ancient British fort. The ramparts can still be clearly seen in the wood, just to the left of the main road, where it straightens before going past Roxburgh Newtown.

St Cuthbert's Well which is still marked on the Ordinance Survey maps, was just to the west of the village. Described as a petrifying well of medieval origin, it was, unfortunately, destroyed during road re-alignment in the 1960's.

The Parish, until 1964, boasted two railway stations - Maxton and Rutherford, part of the St Boswells to Tweedmouth line. Probably the most important days in their history were when, in 1948, the East Coast Mainline was closed due to flooding and the only open route was through Rutherford and Maxton. Locals still remember seeing the 'Flying Scotsman' on the single track with a 25 mph speed limit!

Parish History | Muirhouselaw and Rutherford | Littledean Tower