Roxburgh, Franciscan Friary

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Alternative Names Convent Of Grey Friars And Church Of St Peter
Canmore ID 58413
Site Number NT73SW 13
NGR NT 72037 33750
Parish KELSO
Former Region BORDERS
Former District ROXBURGH
Datum OSGB36 - NGR

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Accessing Scotland's Past

The Friary of St Peter's was located near Roxburgh, standing to the south-east of Kay Brae by the banks of the River Teviot. Its general location is fairly well known as parts of the buildings were still standing in the early nineteenth century. Today nothing survives of St Peter's, but a house named The Friars by Teviot Bridge is a reminder of their presence.

The exact year when the Franciscans built their friary remains unclear, but it is believed to have existed before 1243, and possibly as early as 1235, when the churchyard of the friary church was dedicated. The friary was occupied until the mid-sixteenth century, when it was partly destroyed in an English raid. Its lands passed to the Kers of Cessford at the Reformation.

The friars at Roxburgh were often caught up in the wars between England and Scotland. For example, in 1296, the warden of the friary delivered King John Balliol's fateful letter to Edward I of England, denying the supremacy of the English crown.

Text prepared by RCAHMS as part of the Accessing Scotland's Past project at

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Archaeological Notes

NT73SW 13 7194 3372

(NT 7194 3372) Convent of Grey Friars and Church of St Peter (NR) (Site of)
OS 6" map, (1938).

See also NT73SW 54.

Shortly before 1243 a house of Minorites or Greyfriars was established at Roxburgh. The buildings of the House included the church of St Peter, beside which was a cemetery dedicated in 1235. The friars sold their property at the time of the Reformation to Sir Walter Ker of Cessford, and part of one building survived into the 19th century. The situation of the friary is therefore known and has been marked upon the OS map.
RCAHMS 1956.

No remains exist here.
Visited by OS (RDL) 4 December 1963.



Notes A country house was built for the earl of Roxburghe on the site of the Franciscan Friary, which is depicted on an estate map of 1736 titled A Survey of Floors by William Wyeth (NAS RHP 3234). The cropmarks of the Friars mansion that are visible on aerial photographs in 2006 are described under the site entry NT73SW 20.

Further details

Books and References

Brooke, C J (2000) Safe sanctuaries: security and defence in Anglo-Scottish border churches 1290-1690, Edinburgh
Page(s): 220-221 Held at RCAHMS F.5.31.BRO

Innes, C (ed) (1851) Origines Parochiales Scotiae: The Antiquities Ecclesiastical and Territorial of the Parishes of Scotland, in Innes, C, vol.1 Edinburgh
Page(s): 452-496

RCAHMS (1956) The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. An inventory of the ancient and historical monuments of Roxburghshire: with the fourteenth report of the Commission, 2v Edinburgh
Page(s): 253, No.521 Held at RCAHMS A.1.1.INV/14

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Charity SC026749