Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Kelso Abbey

A Scheduled Monument in Kelso and District, Scottish Borders

We don't have any photos of this monument yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »

If Google Street View is available, the image is from the best available vantage point looking, if possible, towards the location of the monument. Where it is not available, the satellite view is shown instead.


Latitude: 55.5962 / 55°35'46"N

Longitude: -2.4309 / 2°25'51"W

OS Eastings: 372941

OS Northings: 633708

OS Grid: NT729337

Mapcode National: GBR C3GQ.HQ

Mapcode Global: WH8XZ.MLMQ

Entry Name: Kelso Abbey

Scheduled Date: 13 February 1996

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM90177

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Ecclesiastical: abbey

Location: Kelso

County: Scottish Borders

Electoral Ward: Kelso and District

Traditional County: Roxburghshire


This monument is the remains of one of the series of abbeys founded by David I in the early twelfth century. It was a Tironesian house which was well endowed and, being so close to Roxburgh, had close royal connections. James III was crowned here.

The upstanding remains of the abbey are the west end of the church which is unusual in Scotland in having a western transept. The abbey church was finished in 1243. The remains show a vigorous use of rising arcades, both blind and open, to enliven the high towers. Two arches of the south nave arcade still stand as does the outer parlour and a trefoil doorway now built into the neighbouring monument to the Dukes of Roxburghe.

A monastery of this importance would have covered a large area and excavations in the 1970's revealed part of the south east transept and an infirmary range further east. Doubtless other remains survive elsewhere in the vicinity.

The area to be scheduled is bounded to the south by the River Tweed, to the west by Bridge Street, to the north by the church yard of Kelso Old Parish Church and to the east by Glebe Lane. Principal exclusions to the scheduling are all post-monastic stuctures above the ground which are not in the care of the Secretary of State for Scotland and all plots of ground where burial rights exist. The area measures a maximum of 300m N-S by 220m and is marked in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland


No Bibliography entries for this designation

Historic Environment Scotland Properties
Kelso Abbey
Find out more
Related Designations

Designation TypeListed Building (A)StatusRemoved

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Other nearby scheduled monuments is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact for any queries related to any individual ancient or schedued monument, planning permission related to scheduled monuments or the scheduling process itself. is a Good Stuff website.