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Ferniehirst Castle

Ferniehirst Castle, the ancestral home of the Kerr family, is located a mile (1.5 km) south of Jedburgh in the Scottish Borders. It was built in 1476 by Sir Thomas Kerr but was destroyed on several occasions during the next 100 years. The castle was sacked by the English in 1523, attacked and retaken in 1549 with the help of the French and captured by the English once again in 1570. In 1593 it was almost completely demolished by James VI as punishment for the then Laird assisting his enemies. Rebuilt in 1598 in a T-plan, it was occupied for two centuries before falling into decay. Between 1934 and 1984 it was leased by the Scottish Youth Hostel Association. In 1983, Peter Kerr, the 12th Marquess of Lothian, purchased the castle and began a major restoration, opening it to the public in 1986. The Marquess has added a new wing to serve as his private apartments.

It is claimed that the castle is haunted by a ghost known as the 'Green Lady'. Curiously the castle was designed for use by left-handed people, a characteristic of the Kerr family, with, for example its 'left-handed staircase'.

The separate 17th Century chapel was reroofed in 1935 following some years of deterioration.


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