"A parish situated nearly in the centre of the county of Roxburgh. It stretches 6 miles in length along the N. side of the river Tiviot; its breadth does not exceed 4 miles. The rivulet Ale runs through the parish, which, with the Tiviot, contains plenty of trout. The soil is rich, consisting of clay and sand, and in some places of a loam. There was formerly a great extent of wood in the parish; but none of long standing remains, except in the environs of Ancrum House, on the banks of the Ale. Several young thriving plantations, however, are now beginning to embellish the country. The site of Ancrum House is very picturesque. Free stone of an excellent quality is found in the parish; and shell marl has been got in some of the mosses. The Roman road from York to the Forth passes through the N. corner of the parish. There are the remains also of a Roman encampment. The district of Langnewton is annexed to this parish. Population in 1801, 1222." From Gazetteer of Scotland published 1806, Edinburgh.



The Borders Family History Society has published a booklet of Ancrum and Longnewton monumental inscriptions.

Nigel Hardie has transcribed and published parish of Ancrum mortcloth records for 1733-1850.

A list of pre-1855 gravestone inscriptions in Bewlie cemetery is given in the following volume:

Gravestone inscriptions prior to 1855: Vol 2. Galashiels Old Cemetery, Ladhope and Bewlie Cemeteries
published by Selkirkshire Antiquarian Society, 1969 (listed in the LDS Family History Library catalogue in microfilm format, so hopefully available worldwide in LDS family history centres).

The creator of these pages is unsure of the exact location of this cemetery which may lie within Lilliesleaf parish. Burials of people from both there and Ancrum parish are listed.



Graham and Emma Maxwell have transcribed and indexed the 1841, 1851 and 1861 census returns for this parish.



Presbyterian / Unitarian
Ancrum, Church of Scotland

Church History

The following quotation comes from the Imperial Gazetteer of Scotland, edited by John Marius Wilson and published in 1868. This reference was found in volume I, p.42:

"The old parish of Longnewtown forms the north and north-west parts of the present parish of Ancrum, and was annexed to it in 1684."

Rutherfurd's Southern Counties Register and Directory of 1866 lists the following non-conformist churches:

  • Free Church

There may have been other non-conformist churches at different times.

According to Rev. William Ewing's Annals of the Free Church of Scotland (published 1914 in Edinburgh) "From the Disruption [1843] the [Free Church] congregation here was maintained on the footing of a preaching station. A church was bult in 1851 ...". Rev. Ewing gives the membership of the congregation in 1861 as 148, by 1900 as 116.


Church Records

The parish church (Church of Scotland) has registers dating from 1703. Old Parish Registers (before 1855) are held in the National Records of Scotland in Edinburgh, and copies on microfilm may be consulted in local libraries and in LDS Family History Centres around the world. Later parish registers (after 1855) are often held in the National Records of Scotland as are any records of non-conformist churches in the area (often unfilmed and unindexed, and only available there).

The parish registers available worldwide on microfilm include some kirk session records:

  • In part 780/2: collections for 1712-1742
  • In part 780/3: accounts for 1723-1820
  • In part 780/4: accounts for 1820-1839

More information on kirk sessions and their records can be found in the Church Records section of the Roxburghshire page.


Civil Registration

Registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths began in Scotland on 1st January 1855. For further details of this see the National Records of Scotland website.


Description & Travel

The Ancrum Village website includes photographs and a history of the parish.

You can see pictures of Ancrum which are provided by:





An article about the history of Ancrum by J. Lindsay Hilson appeared in the 1928 Hawick Archaeological Society Transactions, pages 20-21.



Ordnance Survey maps covering Ancrum include:

  • Landranger 74: Kelso & surrounding area - scale 1:50000, or 1.25inch:1mile, or 2cm:1km
  • Outdoor Leisure Map number 16: "The Cheviot Hills - scale 1:25000, or 2.5inch:1mile, or 4cm:1km

Ancrum is also covered by an old Victorian one-inch to the mile Ordnance Survey map published by Caledonian Maps. The relevant sheet is sheet number 17 "Hawick & Jedburgh" which also includes Ancrum, Ashkirk, Bedrule, Bonchester, Cheviot Hills, Hobkirk, Lilliesleaf, Minto, Teviotdale and Watling Street.

The National Records of Scotland holds the following as part of its collection of maps and plans:

  • 1826: Plan of Rawflat. Scale 1:3200. Size 65x84cm. Grid (map) reference NT5824. NRS reference RHP.3528
  • 1826: Plan of the Estate of New Belses. Scale 1:3200. Size 70x88cm. Grid (map) reference NT5725. NRS reference RHP.3559

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference NT603249 (Lat/Lon: 55.516194, -2.63054), Ancrum which are provided by:



Here are some figures showing the parish's population through time:

  • 1755 - 1066
  • 1801 - 1222
  • 1811 - 1309
  • 1821 - 1386
  • 1831 - 1454
  • 1861 - 1511