Tony’s Ancestral Tour

Tony Wilson at Skirling KirkyardLast year we met Tony & Joanne Wilson from California when they joined Borders Journeys for an ancestral tour. This year Tony decided to join Christine Woodcock’s Geanealogy Tours of Scotland programme to undertake further ancestral research in Edinburgh’s archives. Taking a break from his research, Tony booked a further ancestral tour with us in the hope he’d expand his knowledge of the areas where his ancestors lived.

Leaving Edinburgh in glorious sunshine we travelled south to Lanarkshire. Our first stop was at Carmichael Kirk where Ian’s research had found that several of Tony’s Brownlee / Brownlie relatives were buried in the kirkyard. Tony was delighted that we found all three family headstones. As we located the final headstone a hailstorm started followed by snow – it was going to be the proverbial four seasons in one day today! This is Tony and Joanne’s sixth visit to Scotland, the sight of Scottish snow delighted them!

At Covington Kirkyard we found several more Brownlee / Brownlie headstones. Nearby at Carmichael Estate Tearoom we had delicious homemade vegetable soup – something that was much needed having spent the morning visiting exposed kirkyards.

Near Skirling we located Heavyside Farm where some of Tony’s Wilson ancestors had lived and worked. At Skirling Kirkyard Tony visited the headstone of his three and four times great grandparents. This time we found a further headstone that may prove to be Tony’s five times great grandfather.

Driving via Broughton and Dreva, we had afternoon tea at Dawick Botanic Garden. Over tea we discussed today’s finds and Ian gave Tony guidance and advice about how to advance his ancestral research.

Our final visit of the day was the beautifully preserved Stobo Kirk. The kirk dates from the late 500s when it is said to have been founded by St. Kentigern (more popularly known as St. Mungo). It is said that St. Kentigern converted Merlin to Christianity and baptised him at nearby Alterstone. Much of today’s kirk dates from around 1120, however there have been many additions and reconstructions over the years – most notably in 1863 and 1929. Tony and Joanne were fascinated by the kirk’s beautiful stained glass and tranquil situation in the beautiful Tweed Valley. From Stobo we travelled back to Edinburgh.

It was a pleasure to meet Tony and Joanne again and be part of Tony’s ancestral journey. We wish Tony much luck with his continued ancestral research.

Tony Wilson

More photographs of Tony’s tour can be found on Borders Journeys’ Facebook.

If you would like us to create a private tour for you, we will be happy to offer you our advice and plan the tour around your requirements so that we can build the perfect tour for you. We recognise that for many of you this may be a once in a lifetime opportunity and our emphasis is upon making your time in Scotland an experience you’ll always remember.

FacebookFollow us on TwitterTripAdvisor

Comments are closed.

Social Widgets powered by