A ‘ROMAN’ SUMMERHOUSE

In the front field of the Nursing home, Grange Hall, on the north bank of the Tweed at Leaderfoot there is an Edwardian Summerhouse built of all sorts of marked Roman stones from the nearby huge 1st/2nd century fort of Trimontium.

You can see it from the weekly Trimontium Walk, away across the Tweed near Broomhill Farm looking like a double garage in the distance. Closer to, you’ll need stout shoes or your wellies, as you encounter longish grass, lots of friendly thistles and Leaderfoot sheep – or their calling cards.

The story is that a Mr Roberts, the Edwardian owner of what was Drygrange House took cartloads of stone from Trimontium and had them built into (a) an arch (now demolished) and (b) a summerhouse. The inside is still lined with fumed oak, surrounding selected 16th/17th century stones built into the Roman walls. Just right for tea and muffins – and a lump or two of your very own history to stir your curiosity.

The three ‘pillars’ that face you have a Roman stone ‘basin’ or a Roman drain at your waist level; the niche above the middle ‘pillar’ is filled with a Victorian fumerary urn and the walls are totally made of bits and pieces of Roman masonry and stonework. (Not something that Historic Scotland would encourage today)

The Trust has consolidated the roof, put some slabbing – and a fence with a gate – round the outside, so that folk could have a good look at these intriguing stones; and lately erected sliding doors to protect the inside. The approach to the building is to be made easier by a path round the Hall

The Trust is very grateful for the cooperation of Grange Hall Nursing Home.