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

Highland Tour pt3

A man from the Scottish Borders visits the Scottish Highlands, then discusses how the Borders can compete with the stunning Highland landscapes

Old Melrose WW2 Bunker

In pictures – Our visit to Old Melrose WW2 Bunker

Shorts – Buzzard

While out filming I get a lucky shot of a buzzard

Deep Cave Exploration

A man searches for a mysterious cave on the Scottish Borders East coast.

Eildon Hills Standing Stones

A man looks at a standing stone in the Scottish Borders which faces the Eildon Hills. Then wonders if this stone is maybe part of a far larger temple.

In Picture: Cavers Castle/House Nr Denholm

Take a look at the Then and Now of this building

Shorts – Black Douglas Outlaw King

The Black Douglas in the new Netflix movie Outlaw King

Loch Ness and Skye

Scenery highlights from touring Loch Ness and Skye

Soutra Aisle – In Pictures

Some pictures of our visit to Soutra Aisle

Shorts – Relics of Roxburgh

The ancient town of Roxburgh lies buried and forgotten. Only 2 stone relics survive from the lost town. A man takes a look at them.

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.

Hume Castle

A man explores Hume Castle and talks about its history.

Braw Lads Gathering Galashiels 2019

All the Scottish Border towns have “Common Ridings” or Gatherings each summer to commemorate the history and traditions of each place. The horse has been an integral part of Border culture since the Reiving times.

King Arthur in the Scottish Borders

A man investigates the connection of King Arthur in the Scottish Borders.

Cave of the Black Douglas

A man searches for the mysterious Ancrum caves and then goes on to look for a cave reputedly used by the Black Douglas himself near Jedburgh

Borders Horrific Xmas

A man investigates ancient monuments and lost villages of Berwickshire then has a supernatural experience at Foul Ford

Fast Castle Scottish Borders Tours

A man talks about his tours of the Scottish Borders this year while visiting the spectacular ruins of Fast Castle.

William Wallace’s Castle?

A man traverses the Gameshope valley near Talla reservoir in the Scottish Borders, searching for the site of a castle said to have been the stronghold of William Wallace

A Tale of two (Scottish Borders) Cities

It may be strange to learn that there was once 2 cities within the Scottish Borders in the 13th and 14th centuries that were highly regarded as the centre of European politics and economy.

Scottish Border Legends: Little Jock Elliot

A man investigates the life of notorious Scottish Border Reiver, Little Jock Elliot. And looks into the real reason Mary Queen of Scots was in Jedburgh

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”

 

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