Mark Nicol

Historian – Filmmaker – Blogger –
Guided Tours – Group Speaker

My Latest Video / Blog

Romans in the Borders week on Discover Scottish Borders

A week’s worth of my videos on how the Romans lived and influenced the Scottish Borders area.

About Discover Scottish Borders

Discover Scottish Borders is a website and social media stream to showcase an intrepid explorer of the Scottish Borders and the borderland between Scotland and England. I cover the Myths and legends as well as strange places – I also have a love for the wildlife that frequents this area! My website is for everyone who has a connection with the Scottish Borders, whether you live here, have visited (or even want to visit), your ancestors came from here or if you just like the look of this beautiful region!

 

Technically, as it stands today the Scottish Borders is a council areal formed in 1975 – Although my work is not to be confused as solely concentrating on the council area but rather the whole of the Anglo-Scottish border area that has seen some of the most extravagant moments in history of the British Isles
Historically, the term Borders has a wider meaning, referring to all of the burghs adjoining the English border, also including Dumfriesshire and Kirkcudbrightshire — as well as Northumberland, Cumberland and Westmorland in England.

Roxburghshire and Berwickshire historically bore the brunt of the conflicts with England, both during declared wars such as the Wars of Scottish Independence, and armed raids which took place in the times of the Border Reivers. Thus, across the region are to be seen the ruins of many castles, abbeys and even towns.
The Scottish Borders has seen evidence from Pictish tribes, Roman Strongholds right through to important battles and documented papers that played a vital part of the several Wars of Independence.

Mark Nicol is the driving force behind Discover Scottish Borders, meticulously researching, scouting and presenting his videos that are unique and full of informative information and bringing the Borders Regions history and tales to life that are almost forgotten.
This is all done in Mark’s free time and days off!
 
 
It all started off one day with Mark exploring the local region and producing certain videos that were a way of documenting his explorations with a little bit of a fun element to add to better viewing and in context with Mark’s personality.
Things started to get a bit more serious when, with the near completion of the Borders Railway he decided to research the tourist capabilities of the areas of Galashiels and Tweedbank. This lead to a series of videos for visitors coming off the train to explore, such as walks and places to visit.
This captured a larger audience and viewers and in turn gave Mark a thirst to seek out the history and folklore of the regions in depth. At the time of writing this Mark’s YouTube channel has close to 200 videos each with its own story to tell.
The videos reach out far a field to the like of the USA, Canada, Australia and South Africa where people have a heart in the area from previous ancestors.
Discover Scottish Borders is growing all the time and becoming the hub for information of the Borders Regions.
Recently Mark has appeared in a BBC Regional Broadcast with his own segment telling the tale of the Border Reivers.
Mark is also in demand as a speaker at local community groups where he showcases his self-learnt knowledge.
Also, Mark takes carefully selected visitors to the region who want to explore the area and see for themselves the delights the regions hold.
When starting out and developing Discover Scottish Borders, Mark’s aim was to get people out and visiting these places and seeing for themselves. This can be gauged by the amount of correspondence we receive on the interest of subject matters.
Not only that, Discover Scottish Borders has been the forerunner of encouraging bloggers and YouTubers to produce their own content of their visit to a site and the exploration they have had, leaving a greater footprint of information as so more visitors may enjoy and discover the delights of our region.
In 2018 Mark was a finalist for “Visit Scotland: Scottish Thistle Award” as Regional Ambassador. Which is basically the Oscars of Scottish Tourism.
Things are looking well for Discover Scottish Borders!

More Of My Work

Scottish Borders Smugglers

A man investigates the smuggling trade in the Scottish Borders throughout the 18th and 19th century. Visiting smuggling hotspots inland and along the coast.

War & Religion on the Tweed

A man searches for the lost and forgotten Chapel of St Cuthbert on the banks of the River Tweed, along the way looking at other churches and legendary stories from the area

Shorts – Black Douglas Outlaw King

The Black Douglas in the new Netflix movie Outlaw King

Edin’s Hall Broch

They don’t make them like this no more!
Edin’s hall Broch near Duns

Scottish Borders Dolphins

A man films dolphins from the town of Eyemouth

Scottish Borders Mass Graves

A man searches for forgotten mass graves in the Scottish Borders, all fuelled by religious persecution in the 17th century.

Sunrise and Spirits

A man climbs the Eildon Hills in the Scottish Borders to witness the sunrise and find the mountain spirit.

Johnnie Armstrong of Gilnockie

A man notices a similarity between 2 statues in Galashiels and Carlisle.
And then goes on the trail of the most notorious of the Border Reivers, Johnnie Armstrong.

Discover Scottish Borders Meets Borders College

Mark met students from Borders college studying Scottish Borders History and took them to a scary and dark place…..

The mark of the Roman Legion

A man searches for the mark of the Roman legion Legio II Augusta hidden in a secret underground chamber called Crichton Souterrain, in Southern Scotland.

Highlights – Scottish Borders Tour 2018

Highlights from our Scottish Borders history and mystery tour last year 2018, and looking forward to the May 2019 tour.

Borders Monoliths & Hillforts

A man finds a strange hidden monolith in the Peebles area of the Scottish Borders then goes looking for the place where it’s builders lived!!

Ruberslaw Scottish Borders

A man climbs Ruberslaw in the Scottish Borders for the first time and wonders at the stunning panoramas.

Otters in Galashiels

A man and his greyhound spot some otters in a small secluded burn near Galashiels

Scotland’s Yew Trees

A man searches for Yew trees in the Scottish Borders at the site of a 6th century abbey Old Melrose. None of these Yews have been recorded before.

History During Lockdown

A man finds some interesting history on his doorstep during lock-down!

Holy Wells of the Scottish Borders

Inspired the Chalice Well in Glastonbury a man searches for similar sacred water sources in the Scottish Borders, with some dramatic results

Summit for Sunrise

A man is drawn to climb a hill near his new home and decides to do it in the pitch dark of morning so he can catch the sunrise. Stunning scenery of the Scottish Borders near the town of Innerleithen.

Turnbull Family Origins

A man searches for ancient fortified sites associated with the notorious Border Reiver family of the Turnbulls.

Scottish Independence March Galashiels

All Under One Banner, peaceful demonstration march against Westminster rule in Scotland. Thousands of people took to the streets of Galashiels on 1st June 2019 to show their support for Scottish Independence.

What Else Do I Do?

Day and Extended Tours

I operate day tours and extended tours originating in the Scottish Borders and outreaching to the rest of Scotland & parts of England to tell the tales of the Anglo-Scots Borderlands

The Itinerary is customised to aid history buffs, spiritual seekers, family heritage research and general appreciation of the Scottish Borders beautiful landscapes and rolling hills

Group Speaking

I am also available to provide talks for groups who are interested in the history of the Borders Region

As you can see, Mark has a real passion for the unknown and forgotten history and presents his videos in a unique way to engage an audience and bring a fun way of keeping the Borders Spirit alive”

 

Follow me on…..

Follow me on my Social Streams where exclusive and extra content can be found
A like and follow of my channels goes a long way in encouraging me to create more fascinating content for you!

Contact me