Talk:Berwickshire Towns and Villages L

From the Family Tree Forum Reference Library


Now known as Ladykirk, The Kirk of Our Lady of the Steill dates to approximately 1500. The church sits on the north bank of the River Tweed, close to a fording point and just across the river on the English side sits the village of Norham and the ancient stronghold of Norham Castle. From the top of the tower Norham can clearly be seen. History shows the many battles within the region and the battle of Flodden Field took place just seven miles away in 1513.

King James IV vowed to build a church that could not be destroyed by fire or flood, cross border burning raids were commonplace, perhaps this is why the roof is stone? This heavy roof also explains why the walls have heavy buttresses to support the extreme weight.

One of the most recent changes to the building is internal, the pews and pulpit came from the now demolished St Andrews' Church in Berwick.


What at first appears a sparse graveyard is a clue to the fact that Legerwood Parish Church is a very old building. The graveyard features many old headstones, often pre-dating the use of inscriptions they have decorative pictures carved in place of names and dates. The church building dates (in parts) to the 1100's and the interior has a fine Norman Arch in the chancel as shown in the images kindly submitted by Rootschat member Terry Hastie. Some repairs were carried out in 1717 and again in the early 1800's.


Lennel Church was the former parish for the Coldstream area. The church was built in the twelfth century. During the late 1600's and early 1700's the population of Lennel dwindled as people moved to Coldstream following raids by the English which virtually eradicated the village and the church fell into disrepair by 1704. A new church was constructed in Coldstream before 1710 and this was then dedicated as the parish church by 1718.

The Mort House was built in the early 1800's within the ruins of the church, the graveyard was the only burial site within the area and graverobbers were common in the district. Watchmen were recruited to protect bodies kept overnight in the mort house prior to burial.


Built in the early 1700's but using foundations from a church built in the 1300's The Kirk of Lammermuir, Longformacus stands within yards of the much younger Longformacus House and estate. Access to the kirk is only possible on foot, the drive leading to the kirk being the private access road to the house. Along with kirks of Abbey St Bathans and Cranshaw the building at Longformacus forms what are known as the "hill" churches, so called because of their location amongst the Lammermuir hills.

The interior is simple and plain, dark wood panels to the lower part of the walls, whitewashed walls make best use of the light through the windows, all of which are stained glass. The ceiling is again dark wood which highlights the walls even further. The font is a simple wooden item, marked with a small plaque which mentions the church at Ellum, a long since abandoned ruinous church some five miles away close to the site of another large estate.

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