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Newlands (parish)

The following lengthy account of the parish was printed in the Imperial Gazetteer of Scotland, edited by John Marius Wilson and published by A. Fullarton & Co. in 1868.

NEWLANDS, a parish, containing the post-office station of Noblehouse, in the north of Peebles-shire.  it is bounded on the north by Edinburghshire, and on the other sides by the parishes of Eddlestone, Lyne, Stobo, Kirkurd, and Linton.  Its length south-south-westward is about 9 miles; and its greatest breadth is about 3 3/4 miles.  The river Lyne, flowing in a southerly direction, runs 2 1/4 miles along the western boundary, and 3 3/4 through the interior; and receives on its left bank, in drainage of a large part of the parish, the streams of Dead and Flemington burns.  The Tarth describes over 2 3/4 miles the whole of the south-western and southern boundary to the Lyne.  These streams are in request with the angler.  A ridge of gently-ascending heights extends between the Lyne and the Tarth, occupies the south-west corner of the parish, and is variously occupied by wood and pasture.  Along nearly the whole of the west side of the parish extends a hilly range bearing various subordinate names, and the general one of Kellyheads, parallel to the Pentlands, and interrupted only by the glen of Flemington-burn.  Along the west base of this range lies the vale of Dead-burn and of the Lyne, forming the central belt of the parochial area, and comprising most of its arable ground.  The hills are, for the most part, green and heathless, and frequently dotted and clumped with wood.  Trees thrive in every part of the parish, and cover about 340 acres.  The land occasionally or regularly in tillage comprises upwards of 3,300 acres; and is chiefly a clayey loam, with a subsoil of close stiff till.  The rock of the Kellyheads range is trap, abounding in fissures and rich in iron ore; and the rocks in the eastern district, on the estates of Whim, Lamancha, and Magbiehill, are those of the coal formation, comprising limestone, sandstone, shale, and coal.  The limestone is extensively worked; the sandstone has been worked chiefly farther down in the vale, in the hill of Broomyleas; and the coal is limitedly worked.  Chalybeate springs are numerous; and there are artificial ponds at Whim, Lamancha, and Magbiehill.  There are twelve landowners, with each a rental of upwards of £100.  The estimated value of raw produce in 1834 was £8,448 for crops, £2,110 for produce of sheep-pasture, £1,830 for dairy produce, and £1,502 for sales of black cattle.  The value of assessed property in 1860 was £7,500.  On the tops of several hills are circular strong walls called rings.  Drochil-castle, situated at the confluence of the Lyne and the Tarth, and not very much dilapidated, is said to have been built by Morton, Regent of Scotland, but not finished when he was beheaded.  The parish is traversed lengthwise by the road from Edinburgh to Dumfries by way of Moffat; and its north-eastern extremity adjoins the Leadburn station of the Edinburgh and Peebles railway.  Population in 1831, 1,078; in 1861, 987.  Houses, 197.

This parish is in the presbytery of Peebles, and synod of Lothian and Tweeddale.  Patron, the Earl of Wemyss.  Stipend, £262 16s.; glebe, £26.  Unappropriated teinds, £37 14s. 7d.  Schoolmaster's salary now is £45, with fees, with £15 fees, and £20 other emoluments.  The parish church is a neat building, erected in 1838.  The previous church was in part an ancient edifice, exhibiting a mixture of Saxon and Gothic architecture, and is now a ruin.  There is an United Presbyterian church, with an attendance of 140.  This church was originally a Relief one, built soon after the origination of the Relief body.  There is, at the eastern extremity of the parish, an assisted non-parochial school.  The ancient parish church belonged, for a time, to the monks of Dunfermline, but afterwards became a free rectory.  Lord Chief Baron Montgomery, the first Scotchman who acquired the dignity of Lord Chief Baron, was a native of the parish.  The Rev. Charles Findlater, author of the Agricultural Survey of Tweeddale, was long the parish minister.  Dr. Alexander Pennycuick, the author of a small volume of poems, and of a poetical description of Tweeddale, was for some time proprietor of Romano.  See NEWHALL.

Annette Peebles
Last updated Monday, 17-Jul-2000 22:13:14 MDT