St Cuthberts Way 2009



The Townhouse, Melrose:

Melrose is a lovely small border town famous for the remains. There are lots of hotels to choose from here, and several B&B’s to suit all budgets. I had a good week at Cheltenham races so William Hill’s paid for my bed and board. This hotel was recently refurbished and has a decent bistro as well. The room was huge and quiet and really well furnished. We ate in the bistro and the food was good, all in all an enjoyable stay....until I breakfast and had to pay the bill

Ancrum Craig B&B, Ancrum:

When I drove up here on day zero to check the location I nearly got stuck on the track that leads into the driveway. The lady of the house came around the corner enquiring if we’d changed our minds. It reminded me a bit of Little Britain – but although old fashioned, it was clean and very comfortable, and the owners have run it for 30years or so. We had tea made for us on arrival and a fire lit in the lounge, and it has a tremendous outlook over the surrounding landscape. It is some distance from Ancrum and you would need transport down to the local pub to eat – about 1 ½ miles away. The local pub for an evening meal was The Cross Keys and I think that applied to the owner. She was busy when we got there and insisted we sat down with a menu, saying to me in a lilting Scottish ‘do you understand’. I understood she didn’t like me standing at the bar as she couldn’t serve the locals in the snug without serving me as well. So that kind of p*%£& her off, but I stood my ground and got a drink. The food was just pub grub, and it filled a spot but no more.

There may be a better choice of places to stay and eat at nearby Jedburgh, but the B&B was good and the breakfast was well done.

The Border Hotel, Kirk Yetholm:

This hotel is the first watering hole you see at the end of the Pennine Way, and a very welcome sight it must be. The rooms have been refurbished recently and I stayed in the Teviot room – very nice as well and well appointed. We ate in the bar in the evening, and it had a good atmosphere early on with good food and service. Later on it went a little quiet as the diners disappeared but it was a very enjoyable stay. Service at breakfast was great – we were the only ones staying! There are several B&B’s close by and more in Town Yetholm a short distance away.

Rockcliffe House B&B, Wooler:

This B&B is one of many in Wooler. It is just off the high street but in a quiet location, and very handy for the local Italian restaurant called Milan – part of the adjacent hotel. The B&B was clean and the service was lovely by the young lady who runs it. The room was a decent size and breakfast was good and set me up for my long final day. A nice little town is Wooler. The Milan was an ok Italian restaurant and reasonably priced – but I suppose that’s all in the eye of the beholder.

Bamburgh View B&B, Holy Island:

Run by a couple from Yorkshire, and newly refurbished rooms. A lovely welcome and a good sized room, with everything you will need. Close to the abbey remains and the local pubs. Holy Island has a few B&B’s dotted around and they are not from anywhere – it’s a small place and very quiet when the tide is in and everybody has gone home. We ate at the Crown and Anchor – one of the two pubs. It was Ok but nothing special. But it was a very relaxing place to wind down the end of the walks as we couldn’t leave until the tide went out at 10:30, and better still no one could arrive either!


General Info

All of the places we stayed had a WiFi connection, which was handy as I had my notebook with me, and that allowed me to download my pictures every night and post a message to the walking forum I use.

The rooms also had a settee to sit down and have a well earned cup of tea at the end of the days walk.

All of the proprietors were very friendly with the exception of the landlady in the Cross Keys in Ancrum – but we all have our off nights don’t we?

If you are thinking of doing this route then some planning and thought has to go into your selection of accommodation – and campers I’m sorry, but I didn’t really look for any campsites. 


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