Marshall Meadows: Origins
In the 1780s a rich merchant built his country retreat in about 15 acres of ground which slopes gently towards the rugged sandstone cliffs between Berwick upon Tweed and the Scottish border. With little regard to expense, he imported huge blocks of beautifully rendered sandstone, and, bearing in mind the enormous cost of glass at the time, furnished the resulting building with lavishly tall 12-pane sash windows in the true Georgian style. Thus, Marshall Meadows became the most northerly permanent building in England, standing a mere quarter of a mile or so from the border itself. At the time of writing (October 2011) sadly little information was available about the house’s subsequent occupants, uses or indeed the identity of this entrepreneur (a situation which we intend to rectify, however).
Marshall Meadows: A Country House Hotel
The estate was eventually sold in 1969, and became an hotel. The North Wing extension to the old build allowed for offices and a spacious ‘Function Room’ as well as the provision of a total of 19 bedrooms.
Today, despite the proximity of the A1 Great North Road, and the East Coast railway line, between which Marshall meadows lies, any intrusion which they might represent is almost entirely screened out by the mature trees to the west in the Upper Garden, and the long curtain wall to the east on the edge of the so-called Mink Farm.
Through the wood on the south side of the estate flows the Marshall Meadows Burn, with its small lake and waterfall, descending in due course to the sea in Marshall Meadows Bay, whilst to the north farmland stretches openly to the border and the low, rolling hills of Scotland.
Marshall Meadows: First… and Last
This is an almost magical place. The air is so clean and fresh that on a clear moonless night, when jackdaws have settled in their roosts and the late gulls meander poetically inland, you can expect no better view of the stars anywhere in England (I know, I’ve been there!) In the early morning, the sun can be blindingly bright, so much so that we found difficulty in capturing the contrasts of light when photographing the house for this website!
As a totally independent contributor, I possess no axes (sharp or otherwise), but if you can come and see for yourself, you will discover the relaxed, friendly atmosphere of the hotel, the deliciously authentic ‘Borders Breakfast’, and dinner of locally sourced fish, meats, vegetables and dairy produce, followed perhaps, by a nightcap in the small, but copiously stocked bar, putting a worthy end to your day. And then, a night of uninterrupted, peaceful sleep. Not to be forgotten.
If you can’t, you will forever wonder… (Romantic old fool! – ed.)
Marshall Meadows Country House Hotel:
Truly the First… and Last hotel in England