Willie Shand: A Visit To St Abbs


You can see some pretty spectacular coastal scenery where I was today — St Abbs, about 14 miles north of Berwick-upon-Tweed.

Named after St Aebbe, a Northumbrian Princess who founded her monastery here in the 7th century, St Abbs is a must-see for those who enjoy nosing around quaint old fishing villages.

There’s always lots of activity around the harbour. The lifeboat station perched high on stilts there surely makes it one of the most easily identifiable places between Berwick and Edinburgh.

The station is important, as the coast in this area of the country can be dangerous. That’s why many a sailor and fisherman owes their life to the St Abbs independent lifeboat.

St Abbs is a Mecca for diving enthusiasts, and is one of the UK’s top diving sites. Meanwhile, for those who prefer to stay on terra firma, a walk round the coast by St Abbs Head can be no less rewarding.

A popular 4-mile circular sets out around the headland from the NTS National Nature Reserve on the outskirts of the village. Because I set out early this morning — heading round by Northfield Farm, the Mire Loch and Pettico Wick — I found the cliffs virtually all to myself.

Well — myself and several thousand guillemots, fulmars and kittiwakes. But don’t be tempted too close to the edge. Unless you can sprout wings, it’s a long way to the bottom!

 

 

Read more about Willie’s – and the PF team’s – travels in our Travel section.

Alex Corlett

Alex is the "Friend's" Features Editor, working with the talented Features Team to bring you everything from cryptic crosswords to financial advice, knitting patterns to international travel and inspirational real life stories. Always on the hunt for a new feature idea, Alex also enjoys cycling and loves a good tea room.

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