Scottish Borders

The small village of Reston, in the Scottish Borders, lies 2½ miles (4 km) southwest of Coldingham, on the A1, the main east coast road from Edinburgh into England, in the valley of the Eye Water.

Shown on Timothy Pont's map of Berwickshire, in the 1600s, as two farms of East and West Renton, it had become a single settlement by the time of William Roy's great map of the 1750s. Its growth was partly as a result of the increase in travel in the 18th and 19th centuries, since it stood on the main Scotland to England road. In 1832, the English reformer and traveller, William Cobbett, describes the Houndwood Inn, which stood about 2 miles (3 km) north of Reston, on the main road, as 'a place for changing horses convenient and clean'. Only a decade later, the railway reached this area, in the shape of the North British Railway, and later the branch west to Duns was opened, which encouraged the development of Reston, as it became the centre of livestock trade for the area, displacing Duns. By the beginning of the 20th century, it had population of 500, meriting a post-office and a couple of inns.

Despite the closure of its station in 1964 and its livestock market in 2001, the village retains its primary school and agricultural contractors, together with food processing. One of its inns, 'The Wheatsheaf' has become small hotel, and the other 'The Red Lion' is a public house. The East Coast Main Line still passes through the village.

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